One of the biggest challenges with blogging is keeping it updated on a regular basis. Despite having lots of ideas, I haven't posted in a while. However, I'm back at it. I have recently had two articles published on The Mighty: "The Early, ‘Hurtful’ Sign of My Bipolar Disorder" and "How I Cope With Depression as a Stay-At-Home Mom." I was inspired to write both of these articles earlier this year when I was struggling a bit.
The winter is always a challenging season for me; I love it and hate it at the same time. I love the beauty of the snow, but I despise the endless gloomy days. I can handle one day here and there, but after too many gray days in a row, my mood begins to match the sky. On top of that, I seem to experience mood shifts this time of year. The same happened this year. I felt great through the holidays and shortly after the New Year, I crashed. I sunk into a two-week-long depression, which thankfully was much shorter than others in the past, but it was still disturbing. To go from feeling great and productive to feeling like a sloth is awful, especially when you look back and realize that the productivity was actually a result of hypomania.
When I went to the psychiatrist in early February, I told him about the ups and downs I had experienced. He looked back through his notes and told me that I have reported this about every two months. I didn't even know that it was happening that often! Since the depression wasn't as severe as it used to be, I figured I wasn't bad enough for a change in treatment, but the doctor disagreed. He said he'd like to try increasing my mood stabilizer and see how I do over the next few months; the hope is that I will remain stable, without mood shifts for much longer.
It has been two weeks on the new dose and I actually feel a difference. My head feels clearer, I have been more focused and I have even made phone calls that I have been putting off for months. I am so grateful that I have a doctor that is attentive and picked up on this pattern that I didn't. Thanks to his diligence, I feel better than I knew was possible. Hopefully I do well for a long stretch.