Friday, March 23, 2012


This morning for the first time in about a month and a half I feel pretty normal. Hoping it lasts. I got about four hours of sleep, and the tiredness I feel right now feels like a normal tiredness, rather than the jittery awful exhaustion of my body wearing out before my mind does. I only had one bad moment so far today, and it only lasted about 20 seconds. Intense seconds, but ones I knew would end, and they did. It's so weird how the feeling is now accompanied by a strong bitter taste flooding my mouth, when it hasn't been in the past.

Yesterday was bad. Work was stressful. Back when I had all the health problems at the end of January and the beginning of February, I was given a large, complicated project involving legal changes to medical product claims for a national-brand product website our company writes and maintains, and apparently I missed implementing a few changes from the 245-page legal-change document. (No small wonder, since I was recovering from surgery and an anesthesia-necessary intestinal biopsy right at the time the hypomania started up, but I can't forgive myself for it anyway.) My boss called me into a huddle room and explained what had happened and that she'd basically been thrown under a bus about it in front of her new boss, so it sort of blew up, although my boss handled it really well. She had a meeting with the PM after her meeting with me and it wound up turning out to not be that bad. The project manager who'd done the bus-throwing was actually much more concerned about the project being over budget and the fact that no one from the copy department had told our department that the client-facing doc I'd sent to the PM had to be formatted in a certain way. So it was more a matter of miscommunication than the things I missed, which turned out to be minor and were caught before coder implementation. But the time between the first meeting with my boss and her returning from the meeting with the PM and letting me know it was okay was awful. I was already shaking and buzzing, since I'd had little sleep the previous night, and during and after the meeting the shaking got a lot worse. Then the migraine started despite all the drugs I kept throwing at it, and by the time the workday was over I felt ready to crawl under a rock and die.

The shaking was bad all day yesterday. I couldn't stop moving. I just now looked at the Barnes Akathesia scale and I was at about a 3.5 or 4 out of 5 most of the day yesterday. I went with my brother to the Hunger Games premiere at midnight and though I was very interested in the movie and wanted to engage with it, it was extremely uncomfortable to have to sit still in the theater. My legs were shaking so hard that the seats on either side of me were moving from it. I felt bad for the poor girl sitting next to me, but I couldn't stop. Every time I tried to force it to stop, this horrible tingling shot through me and I felt like I was going to scream, so I just kept doing it. By the time I got home it was starting to wear itself out, and I got to sleep around 4 or 4:30. Then I got up for work.

Now I feel used up and tired out, but it's a good tired out. Like a normal, genuine tired, that normal people feel when they don't get enough sleep. So even though it's not pleasant to be foggy-brained and have a slight headache, I'm actually really happy about it. I feel more sane now than I've felt in days. Though it doesn't feel it will last, I'll take it while I've got it.

I had a facepalm moment yesterday when I realized I've been in a mixed state for at least three weeks. Funny how these things are so hard to see when you're in them.

Haven't heard back yet from the psychiatrist that the Abilify was authorized by the insurance company. I saw him on Wednesday and they said it would take 24-72 hours for it to go through, so hopefully by tomorrow I'll have it in my hands. This calm feels somewhat like the eye of the storm and I know it isn't going to last, so it'll be good to have this new thing to try when it does return. I'm nervous that it will increase the agitation/weight loss problem, but still willing to give it a try and see what happens.

Today's picture, taken a few years ago in northern Ohio early in the morning. It feels like a waiting picture. I am waiting.


  1. That shaking is THE ABSOLUTE WORST. Back when I got pregnant with my third child, I was coming off a really peculiar symptom - three months of absolute blankness. I had no ability to focus or retain anything in short term memory. From about May to September in 2003, I literally have two memories: a single week in June when I left home for a training, and one day when I nearly ran a red light, slamming on my breaks at the last minute, and only realizing after i'd stopped that I was driving. It was like my mind just up and disappeared. When I came back to my brain, I realized I needed to get help. As little as I wanted to, I went to a doctor, who of course refused to treat me for bipolar disorder despite my symptoms, because they always want to treat you for depression first. I allowed them to put me on Wellbutrin, despite the fact that the first time I'd been on it, it gave me hallucinations. (Like bad ones, like seeing dead men strung up in my ceiling fan.) I guess the pregnancy tempered it, and it didn't give me hallucinations. Morbid thoughts, oh yes, but I didn't recognize them until after I was off it. And when I went post-partum manic, that was compounded by the Wellbutrin. I got that shaky, unable to stop moving feeling every day and was up until 4 in the morning, rocking, clasping my hands together until they cramped, and then it would all crash and be over, and I could finally sleep. That is not something I'd ever wish on anyone.

    btw, I know we just met, so in case you haven't seen it on my blog, I just thought I'd give you a heads up. I'll be out of the country for two weeks starting this Sunday and won't have a whole lot of internet access. I'll have some posts auto-scheduled on my blog, but won't be reading blogs. I'll catch up with you when I'm back, but it's going to look like I've disappeared for a few weeks, and that's why. :)

  2. Yeah, they do always go for the depression drugs first--which of course are the ones a person with bipolar should not be on. Or, say, a person with a terrible undiagnosed tooth infection.

    Akathesia is not your friend. Or mine. Or anyone's.

    I saw on your blog that you'll be out for a while--I hope you have a really great time!