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How To Cope When Everything Is Changing

I've lived a lot in my 34 years. I've been a Brooklyn girl, a Manhattanite, an Austin Texan. I've lived in countries all over the world and traveled to exotic places just to write about them. This isn't my first time 'round the block.

But this move to Nashville feels important, like I am cutting the strings that have kept me upright. I am going out alone - moving my arms, legs, turning my...
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Find Where You Belong

I know that when I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder I felt very alone. I felt like I had been handed a life sentence and no one could understand what that felt like. But to be honest, I had been dealing with depression for years. Depression ostracizes you. It makes you feel worthless and unlovable. Depression is not your friend.

For a while I lived in my ice castle alone, allowing doctors and...
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Losing Control

I'm having a rough day.

I was doing fine until I had a phone conversation with a very negative person who sucked the life out of me. It really got under my skin- the negativity. I try to surround myself with positive (or at least stable) people. I often take on the mood of those around me, so when someone comes along and complains about everything in their life, I absorb that. Ufff.

I called...
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Forgive Yourself

I am beautifully bipolar. I am. Some days are great - amazing, actually, and some days suck. Some days I am down so far in the hole no rope can reach me. And I know, I know, "everyone has bad days," but if you live with bipolar disorder or depression or myriad mental illnesses a "down" day may feel like the end of the world. Life isn't just crappy. You are suicidal.

The longer...
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5 Tips On Finding A New Therapist

Finding a therapist is a daunting task. I mean, after all, you will be telling this man or woman very personal information. You may talk about your mother. You may talk about your partner. You may talk about your hopes and dreams. It's a lot.

I have had a lot of therapists - nearly 10. Yeah. I know what I am talking about. The number is really indicative of my moves around...
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Rolling with the Punches

The past four months have been hard. I got dumped via text message over 5 & 1/2 years into the relationship. Then I continued to live in his house until last week. We co-existed. I tried to be friendly. He disappeared a lot and spent a lot of time sneaking around on his cell phone. Make of it what you will. I have.

So, I decided to move to Nashville because my friend Taylor thought...
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Don’t Be Ashamed

I used to be afraid to tell people that I had bipolar disorder. I was ashamed. I thought bipolar disorder was a dirty, dark secret. I thought I was less than everyone else because I was sick. I felt like people wanted me to shake it off and get back to being the Elaina J that I used to be. I had to set up walls and guard them fiercely so no...
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Emotional Support Animals

I got my Bernese Mountain Dog, Hope, in November of 2008. She was born the day I was released from the psych ward in California. After I tried to kill myself and nearly succeeded. I saw this as a sign.

My parents wanted me to get a dog and I wasn't sure I could handle the responsibility. You have to understand that at that time I was emotionally frail. I had a hard...
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Who Am I To Tell You…

This is my 184 blog post on Two years in and I am still being beautifully bipolar. I dole out a lot of advice here. Things I think you shouldn't do. Things I think you should be doing. But maybe you weren't here since the beginning of this blog. Maybe you don't know my story. Maybe you wonder who am I to tell you what's best.

Because I live it.

I take my medication...
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Starting Over

I am 34. Thirty four and starting all over. Sometimes that is shitty. Sometimes that is exciting. Sometimes I am unlucky. Sometimes I am blessed. Just depends on when you ask me about it. I moved out of my ex-boyfriend's house this past weekend and am spending a few weeks at my parents' until I move on. Single at 34 isn't exactly how I thought my life would go, but is it ever?

Being beautifully bipolar can...
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