the life of zooey who happens to be Bipolar 2
That’s what I got a couple of weeks ago from my therapist. You see, there wasn’t much for us to go over in session. We had a hard time filling up the time. We realized this last fall and went to every other week. Now we were at that point again. We talked mostly about good things, but then it was only 30 minutes at the most. So then we talked about next steps.
For now, it’s a call-as-needed basis. I am astonished that 2.5 years after starting therapy and medication and I am at this place. I thought it would be a lot longer talking and talking and talking and talking. But the fact is, as I’ve said before in my life, “Better living through chemistry,” really means just that. Granted, this was in reference to getting rid of a headache then, but the same applies to Bipolar 2 now.
My therapist gave me lots of coping skills to help keep the depression monster at bay during our sessions. Sometimes I can redirect thinking and critical inner voices. Other sometimes, I’ve learned in my case, I just have to cry out what is bothering me so I don’t turn it inward. Whatever is frustrating me, like a teenager or a freaking asshole of a boss, I just have to let it out. If I feel bad about myself, I say it and work to move on from it. I used to suck it up and swallow down any sort of pain, literally using food as a sedative. I used to turn that stuff back on my own rather fragile self-esteem and put myself down for eating anything. Dear hubby understands my struggles. It’s a true blessing to be married to this man. He is the exact opposite of my ex. Dear hubby does not ridicule me or belittle my feelings like I experienced in my first marriage.
So for me, it took better skills, a positive home life and medicine to get me where I am today. It is a true luxury after years of large chunks of time spent depressed. Yay! I’d forgotten how positive outlook days felt for more than a day or week at a time. Now I can live it.
I do know my mood could change at any time and I could slip into a long depressive state even with behavior tools and medicine. This is always a risk with my illness. But I have the tools now to dig myself out of that black hole, a supportive network and good doctors to help me. And for that I am truly grateful.
This new approach to life truly is now my windfall.