Tomorrow, April twenty first, is my thirty eighth birthday. In a way, I never thought this day would come. At the end of my twenties I was in the dark pit of depression. I was living with my parents. I did not want to get up in the morning. All day I longed to be in the bed covers. Everything was black, sometimes it is again.
I have tried dozens of medications, still searching that keeps me safe from my own mind. I am now seriously considering electric convulsive therapy (ECT). My psychiatrist is putting in a referral for me this week so I can go see another doctor in this quest of soothing the depressions and silencing the hallucinations. I would have to travel an hour and a half for this procedure. Uh.
Anyway, I digress. Thirty eight. There was a day this past year when I was done. I was going through a very stabbing depression and I did not want to get any older. I looked at my life and it was way to long. Women on my mom’s side of the family live into their nineties. That seemed too long, still does. I thought if I lived into my eighties that would be fifty more years and I could not ride this rollercoaster that long.
As you know, I have tried to commit suicide four times, each time resulting in a longer prison sentence in the psych ward. This illness is ugly and hard and hides below the surface of a smiling face and laughter.
But yet, here I am, celebrating my birthday tomorrow. Inching closer to forty. (How the hell did that happen?!) You know what saves me from death, besides all the roommates and healthcare professionals, is love. Forgive me for getting a bit preachy here, feel free to skip this part. I believe in God and often question why he has placed this beautiful curse on me. But I know He loves me; that is why I am still here. I am blessed with the most supportive family a woman could ask for. They have taken me to appointments, made sure I took my medication. They have visited me in the hospital when they could. My parents ave kept a close eye on me for up to three weeks to keep me out of the hospital.
I know some of you do not have that kind of support. I read forums in which people say that no one believes that they are bipolar or believe in the illness at all. Perhaps you do not have faith to fall back on. I have barely any friends, but the ones I do love me and I them. I know it is hard, but ladies and gents if I can do it with my crippling version of this disease in addition to my others I know you can.
Make your birthday a big deal. Make plans with others, even if it is just with your grandma. Or fly solo – nothing wrong with that. Order a pizza and watch your favorite movie. Buy yourself a pretty cupcake or buy a cheesecake and eat the whole damn thing. You do you. Do not wait for the surprise party or for the cards in the mail or the phone calls. Love yourself. Celebrate another day you have made it because I know how hard some of those days and another day, another year, on this Earth is something to be celebrated.
I am proud of you. You are out there killing it, crushing it one step at a time. You will be okay. When it comes, I want to wish you a beautiful birthday. xoxo