Today, I woke up tired. I even had my whoop recovery score to prove it. I had a lot to do today. I felt like wobbly and exhausted inside while somewhat typical on the outside. Except for all my apologies. Ahh sorry I forgot your name *bagel person I see nearly every day*, oh I didn’t pay?, oh, yep, I usually get that don’t I, sorry about that, and even, My name?. The list for today is long, and for the last four months, an exhaustive one.
Before starting any meds, I was manic, mixed, & psychotic a fair amount of the time, yay rapid cycling. I would forget my identity at times. I couldn’t retrieve words when talking with others. In the last couple of years (premeds) I could barely handle myself on my own or in public. I lost social skills, cognitive skills Imagine needing to leave a Victoria’s Secret due to the line, smell & fluorescent lights while holding your teddy bear won at an arcade. If I were up, I’d think I could read & listen at the same time. My brain was always thinking, spinning ideas, and I loved it, handlable or not. This reduced with Seroquel & Lamictal, but nothing else was eased. So we started lithium with a goal: No manic mornings with depressive afternoons, no mixed episodes with their healthy dose of psychotic, no bipolarness besides the symptoms that continue between moods.
Since starting Lithium I’ve been on a slow roll of increasing mental ineptitude, I actually took the Mensa workout test to see if my IQ changed, and yep, down by 4 points. I’ll probably test again next year, it’s just who I am. The cognitive declines: cognition, attention, memory, get so very worse when I’m’ tired. It’s flapping frustrating to get a medicated 7.5-8h of sleep, only to wake up unable to form a cohesive sentence after 20min. It’s embarrassing even after you’re used to it on occasion. For instance, We have a woman living in our home to help provide care to our daughter and she is used to my incoherence, memory, & attention issues, especially in the morning, but it still hits me here and there. The shame of it.
It’s not just a conversation issue. I had to go back to the house 3 times in 5 min this morning, all I wanted to do was drive my daughter to school. I have thoughts that get me happy, sad, inspired, and forget them immediately with only the knowledge that it was a significant thought. I’m used to .. ugh. I forget, midsentence too. Grrrr. I have had clutter around me for my whole life, I don’t notice that it’s there, of course, my mother had me tested, and it came back with a 97% tolerance of disorder, so she eased up a bit. Now I’m following advice and have actually gotten several areas of the house cleared out, but if I start cleaning other areas that I put something away in, I get overwhelmed, my head starts spinning, and I have to stop.
I am getting used to the memory issue, slowly. I realize I forgot something and wait, move my hands around, look around slowly, and I can usually remember my purpose in that space.
Now I am facing down yet another increase in the world of lithium. I metabolize the drug well, I’m at 1,500 and still only at 0.6 with the therapeutic range being 0.8 – 1.2. My friend is only on 900 and therapeutic, I’m a bit jealous tbh. Next week I’ll be going up again. I’m feeling a mix of dread, get this over with already, and hope. I dread the next level of my side effects, I want to get to therapeutic levels now! It’s been ages! And hope that maybe this incoming increase will mean balance. Fingers crossed.
In looking for articles to reference, I found a couple for which I didn’t have a place within the post