“Jeanie are you awake I need to take your vitals?” Yep I was awake. And totally waiting for my pancakes. It really is about the little things. On the outside you really take those things for granted. Inside pancakes make you smile in the morning.
I sat up, the beds didn’t move up or down. Someone had threatened to smash their head. So I sat up like the good like psych patient I was. And I could smell something, or rather myself. It dawned on me, it had been a few days since I had showered. So I asked about that, my CNA assured me I would get a shower right after breakfast. I had these terrible visions of someone standing over me watching me shower. Good news though, they don’t do that. It’s like a 4.5 min shower you get but you get 4.5 mins to yourself. At least there I did.
I got back to my room, and the nurse was there to set me up to test for seizures. Erg yeah so I had wet hair. We did what we could dried my hair as fast as possible. But really you try to get a blow dryer on the psych unit. GOOD LUCK! We managed though. Finally the doctor showed up. This cap went on my head and they did this and that and it was over. I was like, okay well than.
Needless to say by this point I was finally feeling pretty darn good. No voices, I could sleep, life was good. The Psychiatrist asked me if I was ready to be released on Monday I said, “Sign me up!” I finally found the courage to ask what my diagnosis was. She looked at me puzzled. (Never a good sign) “Your honestly quite complicated (tell me something I don’t know….go on) but I believe you are OCD with Depression and Anxiety.” I left the office scratching my head. Partially from the cap, but mainly because me being OCD was well to be honest this didn’t even sound moderately likely. I change where I want to keep my shoes by the day. Okay though I don’t have a doctorate right, so ok lets roll this out and see where it leads.
Monday came, I had a new Doctor, he said no no seizure activity found. But he said that honestly after reviewing my file from intake to breakfast that morning, he truly believed that my voices were from the insomnia. According to some staff apparently I had circles under circles and looked like a beat dog until I started sleeping again. And that alone will cause the brain to do strange things. Boy did I feel better. I about hugged the man. We set me up to see my official outpatient psychiatrist and off I went.
It was ironic my new doctor was also my mother in laws doctors and he had actually brought her out of a complete catatonic state. Now if that’s not magic I don’t know what is. But I was very very happy to be in his office. And for the previous two weeks I was on top of the world. I could do this and that and that and this and I was basically champion of the universe.
Yeah so there I was talking to him at a mile a min. Alright so more like 100 miles a min. I talk fast normally. Telling him about all my plans and how grateful I was for the help and the prozac. And he stopped me, “So have you ever heard of bipolar 1?” I said “Well, no I guess bipolar but I didn’t know there were different kinds.” He went on, “Jeanie, you’re in a manic state right now.” My mouth dropped. I felt great how could this be bad?! “It’s because of the prozac, in the bipolar mind on an antidepressant there is a chance the serotonin levels can reach too high and cause mania. Now I don’t believe this is normal for you and we are taking you off of it immediately. We do need to make some major changes in my medications though. From mood stabilizers to antipsychodics which don’t let the word scare you, but will hopefully when we find the right one keep you from being depressed.” He continued on to explain bipolar. And I just sat there going, I knew I was bipolar at 18! I knew why didn’t anyone listen?
But he saved me. He literally saved my life. It took many drug changes and life style changes, and a few more trips to the psych unit because this drug or that drug quit working. But once the right combination had been reached, life started for me again. Or maybe for the first time.