Monday, September 13, 2021

Lithium, Seroquel, and My Quest for Stability


The price of stability for me is filled with daily medicine, therapy, weight gain, doctor appointments, blood draws, hair loss, and more. And being stable doesn’t mean I don’t still have manic and depressive episodes, just means they are less often and less severe. But I wouldn’t  change it for the world.

When I was first diagnosed with bipolar disorder I was placed on Lithium. Lithium is a mood stabilizer. For me, Lithium was a savior for a while by itself but only for a little while. I still struggled with depression and found myself trying different medicine to go with the Lithium to help. Also with Lithium I found myself getting blood draws every few months.

I finally found a combo that worked, for a while. I let the denial get the better of me, convinced myself I was fine and didn’t need medicine after all. With Covid happening shortly after I quit my medicine cold turkey.

I went on a downward spiral. And when I say I crashed I crashed. I had a manic episode. That lasted for months. I blew through thousands of dollars. And I started drinking more often. Many many sleepless nights. Untold amounts of paranoia. I thought everyone was out to get me. I would make up scenarios in my head and then think they were real. I was quick tempered. I eventually started coming down and realized maybe I needed help. I finally was starting to accept being labeled Bipolar. 

Back to the doctor I went. And was put back on the Lithium. Then I started the dance of finding what worked for me medicine wise. I remember trying countless cocktails. Then I had a depressive episode. One where I started shutting everyone out. I isolated myself, the paranoia came back. I felt like a burden to my family. A horrible mom to my kids. I was lucky this time, I had a moment of clarity and asked for help.

After my days inpatient the cocktails trails continued. Until I tried Seroquel. I finally found my Cocktail. Lithium, Seroquel, and an antidepressant. After months of trying, I found something that finally gave me stability. Now the ups and downs are manageable. 

My stability has given me my life back. I am compliant with my medicine. I feel like I’m a better mother. A better daughter. A better friend. Yes I do still have ups and downs, but they aren’t as severe and I have become more open and accepting of help. I go to therapy regularly. I see my doctor every three months. I go to my blood draws and I ask for help if I need it. I can honestly say without my support system, the therapy, and medicine, I would not be here today. I have found a cocktail that works for me. 

Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for help. Do not think it is a sign of weakness. Asking for help is a sign of your courage! You are not alone, whether it be depression, anxiety, bipolar, or many more. Mental health is a disease, just like strep throat or the flu. Don’t be afraid to find your stability, whether that includes medicine, therapy, or a good support system. No one should be ashamed for admitting they need a little help to get there.

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