Tuesday, August 28, 2007

My brain

My brain is not happy with my current dosage of Abilify, the drug I take to keep from becoming a raving lunatic.

This is the med where I'm at my max dosage.

Owen Wilson allegedly tried to kill himself this week, and my friends and myself strongly suspect bipolar disorder. I would prefer that he become the poster child for the disease rather than Britney Spears, of whom I also suspect bipolar.

I'm going to explain what goes on in my brain at these times so that I might provide some understanding.

There's a stretching feeling. It feels like your brain is a rubber band that has reached its limit. It also feels like your brain is suddenly on the outside of your skull with your skull inside it. I believe that anyone who claims the brain has no nerve endings is a liar, because every bipolar person can feel their brain. When rubber band brain relaxes, it sends you into a deep well of despair that can very easily lead to suicide if you aren't medicated. Then rubber band brain stretches again, and one of several things happens.

It stretches just far enough to allow you to feel joy and happiness over everything. The world is your oyster. You can do anything, and often try to do EVERYTHING. Even things that might not sound like a good idea to other people. Spending money you don't have, boinking random strangers, etc.

It stretches to the skull itself. At this point you start doing everything at triple the speed of usual. You write more, paint more, compose more, talk faster, clean faster, drink more, smoke more, and possibly even run around in circles to expend some of the energy. This is the point that almost every bipolar person LOVES. The possibilities that erupt out of your own skull are invigorating, and you don't want it to end. However, if you're not under treatment/under the wrong type of treatment it leads to...

Stretching past the skull. The point where it feels like your skull is inside your brain banging around. This is when the irritability and rage begins. Hair trigger tempers. Sarcasm. Rage that every living creature runs from because they can sense the danger to come. This is when people kick their dogs, beat their children, and often take high powered weapons into heavily populated areas and start firing. This is NOT a good place to be obviously.

And here's the kicker. For people like myself, ALL OF THESE STAGES CAN HAPPEN IN ONE DAY.

And right now they are. Which means my meds are no longer cutting it. And in order to keep myself and my family safe, I need to find another option.

This, frankly, sucks ass.


Safeena said...

YOur description is invaluable, especially for ppl who are dealing with a beloved other person with the same clinical problem.

Kelly said...

Wow, thanks for 'splaining that, Julie. I would've never guessed it was like that. That is awesome insight.

If you don't mind my asking, have you always had this? Or can you remember a time when you didn't feel this way?

I'm so sorry the meds aren't working. Do you have any idea of what else to try?

Julie said...

I must have had this since I was about 7 years old because that's when my mom said my behavior changed and I stopped being happy. I also attempted suicide at age 13 (hello puberty) and then started engaging in stupid, risky behavior at about that time too. I had a full blown break when I was 26, after the death of someone really close to me, and that was when I FINALLY got diagnosed.

If they had diagnosed me at 13 my life would have been far different. But I probably would never have moved to NC and met Rich and had Livvie, so I consider upwards of 20 years of hell a fair trade.

Cyn said...

I have felt some of those things but never to that extent. I do not think I am bi-polar. Yikes that sounds horrible.