Thursday, September 11, 2008

Episode Aborted

For a definition and understanding of what a bipolar episode is click on this website.

In the past two weeks I have had quite a few stressful situations all happening in a short amount of time. Some of these are triggers (I'll post on that later). I know this because they are in my wellness notebook (post later). The first big trigger was my dad (who also is bipolar) being admitted to the hospital on an involutary 72-hour suicide watch on Aug 29th. Another trigger is the change of seasons. Not necessarily weather, but from summer schedule to fall schedule. The third trigger is that my memory-processing issue is getting worse. I can't remember anything and I feel LOST. Simple task require so much from me right now.

Last Saturday my DH and I realized that I had temporarily packed my schedule way to full. It is easy to do at the beginning of the school year. We didn't even notice until we were right in the middle of it. On Saturday we decided that after Sunday's activities which were back to back I would cut back my schedule. Well that was good in theory, but I was already so tired and close to the edge I didn't make it through my Sunday activities. I really belived that I HAD to go to a baby shower because I was on the planning team. Looking back this is not the case. I didn't have to go. Most of my friends including the honoree know my situation. It would have been completely fine to call a few people and say I needed to stay home. Especially since I had a leaders meeting of the one ministry I'm involved in at church that night. That should have been the only thing on my schedule that day. So due to my own lack of planning (or over planning) I had a meltdown Sunday afternoon. When I came home a mess my DH was able to help me calm down so that I could go to my meeting. Now I could have skipped the meeting, but this ministry outside of taking care of my family is the ONE thing that I'm really good at right now. It is the only outside committment that I consider mandatory. Since Sunday DH and I have worked an at home 72-hour plan that keeps me from having a full blown episode. Included in this plan:
1. Review activities and decrease schedule by one-third for at least 7-10 days.
2. Reduce stimulation (loud noise, light, talking). Keep days low-key.
3. Regulate sleep - no naps - in bed around 10pm wake up no earlier that 6am.
4. Monitor medicine intake.
5. Be positive and have sense of humor.

If my plan didn't work the next step would have been to call the doctor and get in for an appointment or go into out-patient or in-patient treatment.

My mood stablized on Tuesday. Last night I was able to effectively minister at church.

My dad is still in the hospital. He was on suicide watch for about 10 days. Today he is being transfered to another unit where he will be there for atleast a week. I will have to be very attentive to my feelings regarding this situation.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


Last night I went to the grocery store to pick up a few items. In the check out one of the magazines made a statement about Angelia Jolie having:
WebMD's definition of "postpartum" is "After childbirth. Cf.: antepartum, intrapartum". I would like to offer my congratulations to Angelina on the birth of her twins Vivienne and Knox.
I'm guessing the magazine is referring to postpartum blues or depression. I don't keep up with celebrities. But if it is what is the big deal to them? It is something that she, her family and medical team can take care of together. I've been there. Giving birth is hard. Having two at once is exponentially harder. It take time for a mom to adjust physically and emotionally. I have faith that the people around her will love her though this time and she will come out better on the other end.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Successful 1st night of AWANA

Last night was the first night of AWANA club at our church. If you are not familiar with AWANA is a gospel based children's club for children 3-years-old to 6th grade. I am the co-director for the girls 3-6 grades. The director is under the commander of the whole AWANA program and over the leaders in the 3-6 grade. I have been working together with the other directors during the summer to get ready for last night (and the entire club year). Our leaders are amazing and most have been in AWANA longer than me....some 10, 15 and 20 years! My co-director is one of my biggest supporters with my bipolar. It is exciting to be able to successful work in a children's ministry at church within the limits of what I can handle. I don't do nursery - EVER! The people who know this are the coordinators that head the program so it isn't a big deal to them. They would rather I not get stressed out an freak out in nursery. In AWANA I'm responsible for the adults leaders. I'm responsible for the background work that isn't seen most of the time, but has to be done for club to run smoothly. I am going to continue to learn so much from the leaders who have been doing AWANA for many years and also are raising godly children. My job is to make their only responsibility on Wednesday nights investing in their clubbers lives. That is why they are in AWANA in the first place.

To summarize last night and my feeling the next day. I feel like last night was a success both as a club and personally. I feel energized and ready to work on my next AWANA project. That is one important key in life - do what energizes you and stop doing things that suck the life out of you.