My introduction was supposed to go this way, “Hello, I’m Bobbie, a food and travel writer, a pastry chef by profession, and a traveler by passion. Blah blah blah.” But, today is not one of those days when I feel like I’m just jovial about anything. So, my intro would be this way, “Hey Dear Readers, thank you for being there and asking me how I am for the past couple of weeks despite the non-existential dramatic outbreak. I’m doing OK. Not bad, not good, but stable (Thank God). Let’s just say, today is one of those days when I dread having this diagnosis.” I’m not happy, but I’m not sad at the same time. I’m having this hasty diarrhea of thoughts running through my brain a thousand miles per hour. So, 3 months ago, I was clinically diagnosed with Bipolar 2 Disorder with Hypomania. *Sigh* (I literally sighed while I wrote that.)
I’m OK, but I am upset. Why? Because there are days like this when you just don’t know how you feel and you’re anxious all the way through your gut. The trigger? Nothing in particular, and that’s the most annoying part. *sigh* Coping with stress and all the other outside triggers is the most important part on how to deal with this disorder. But, right now, nothing seems to work. I tried my psychiatrist’s advice to breathe in and out and relax. Believe me, I tried. I didn’t get the best of it. I am writing this because I want people to know how it’s like in the mind of someone who’s just not “bored”. We can always say, “do something”, or “keep yourself busy”. If it was that easy, I could have done so.
As I woke up today (mind you, I’m also struggling with flu), I had breakfast, played with my dog, cooked for lunch, prepared for church, actually went to church, walked home from church to my house (yes, I walked without the four wheels), went out for coffee with a friend, fed my dog, and now writing this blog post (so let’s keep it busy), yet I am having this very anxious feeling and butterflies in my stomach. THAT’S THE MOST UPSETTING PART. Not knowing where it’s coming from. Ask me why, ask me what my problem is, and I will let you know the answer. “I’m Bipolar, I don’t know. I will let you know when I do.”
Let’s all stop the stigma that having a mental disorder is just being bored, or overly dramatic, or not having enough faith with a higher being, or just being plain insecure about everything. Having a mental disorder actually do exists. I am a living proof and I am telling you, the struggle of not knowing your triggers and how to cope is a serious condition which is mentally and emotionally exhausting. Let us all be clear, some of these disorders are caused by chemical imbalances in the brain that can be stabilized through medications and psycho therapies. Just like when you get an invisible sickness like Diabetes or Gastro-Intestinal Flu. You can’t see it, but you can feel it and you need medications for it.
MAY IS MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH. A month from now, I may still be struggling, or I may be more stable. We don’t know, but one thing is for sure. I will be out there, together with my fellow mental health advocates, fighting our own battles while trying to take away the stigma, not just from this generation, but as well as for the future advocates.
Do we share the same advocacy? Do you have a story to share? Let me know. I’d love to hear from you. 🙂