Posts tagged ‘bipolar paranoia’

Claiming Victory

20170524_Pink Lily

I made the drive home from church.  Making it there to serve in itself was a miracle.  I probably shouldn’t have driven home but it was the only place I wanted to be.  So I took some medicine and took deep breaths the whole way home.  See, in the parking lot as I was leaving, I felt a panic attack coming on.  I’ve been struggling with bipolar depression lately.  The deep, daunting, paranoia-filled affliction has encompassed me, debilitated me, and encumbered me from doing the simplest things, such as taking a shower or washing dishes, to my most important job, mommying.

Anytime I start to think big, I feel like Satan rallies his demonic troops and launches a full-blown attack against me.  Some might think I’m paranoid.  But this is backed by the Bible (which is my test to see if I’m being paranoid).  And this is Biblical:  Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy.  I’ve got some big things coming up.  At the beginning of last month, I started actively pursuing a way to get my “Think Big and Be Big” scriptural affirmation cards off the ground.  I also got the idea to start a topical small group for writers at my church.

It’s so hard to claim victory in the midst of despair.  I know God has won the war for my soul but that doesn’t mean I don’t get wounded in battle.  But it’s the little victories that lead back to the path of stability.

The other day I was too weary to get out of bed.  I had to ask my mother to keep the kids.  After sleeping for over 19 hours straight, I woke up, and prayed my simple prayer, once again, “God, please help me.”  Then, I got up and cleaned my daughter’s disaster of a room, which took about three hours of concentrated effort.  The twins came in and climbed on everything and wanted to get into big sissy’s stuff and play (which of course, I took some time to do).  Cleaning and spending time with my little ones… It was a small victory, but a victory none-the-less.

Throughout this depressive episode, I’ve tried to get out and do things even if I didn’t feel like it.  I dragged myself to a few play-dates and tried not to isolate myself, which is what I usually do, claiming that I’m sick.  I am sick but “depressed” is a more accurate description.  I hate claiming that over myself.  I’ve been deeply depressed for nearly a month now, but I’ve got some important milestones coming up that I pray will help pull me out.

I seriously considered canceling that writer’s small group, which is set to begin this Thursday (and I’m supposed to be the “leader”).  Me, in my condition, leading a small group of any kind will be, well, another miracle.  But God wouldn’t let me let go of that idea so I know that with His help and guidance, I can do it.

So I have to claim victory, not defeat!  Regardless of how I feel, I know that God’s got me and He has His purpose and plans to build me up and NOT let me down!  I believe that.  I put all my hope in that.  I have faith that He will pull me through this storm.  I claim victory now, Lord.  I have the victory in Jesus.

Double Talk Quote: “Mommy, I’ll sing a song to you so you’ll feel better.” – Bella 5/17/17

Bible Verse: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”  John 10:10

Word that has Lost its Meaning:  defeated

Relatable Lyrics:  Victory In Jesus – the classic hymn

AND THEN I CRIED
“DEAR JESUS,
COME AND HEAL
MY BROKEN SPIRIT”
AND SOMEHOW JESUS
CAME AND BROUGHT
TO ME THE VICTORY!

20170526_funny big red chair - 5 earthquakers, Audrey

Bella (2), Baby “Rain” (4 months), Mica (9), Brooks (2), and “Hope” (8)

 

Bless your heart, little “Rain”, I know how you feel!

*Note:  Sorry if this was a “rambling” post.  At least right now, I’m able to think in full sentences!

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MIA

I’ve been “Missing In Action” for a while here in the blogosphere.  But I have been plenty present in reality land.  Packing and unpacking, playing with little ones, and making time for family, have been a struggle with the move but one I can handle with a little help from my…meds (ugh).

But there were times when I was MIA in real life.  It was 2006 – I call it my missing year because I remember very little from that time period.  I was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder in late 2005 and put on a litany of medications:  One after another in an attempt to see which one(s) would work for me.  I’d try one which would take up to 6 weeks to kick in and then when it didn’t work, I’d have to wait another few weeks to wean off it to try the next.  My sleep pattern was as crazy as ever.  I’d be up for days, just like before when I was unmedicated, except then, the medications made me zone out.  I can’t account for my days or my daze.

That’s when Mia took over.  In paranoia and sporadic breaks from reality, my alter-ego formed.  Mrs. Mia Wallace is a fictional character from the movie, Pulp Fiction.  Whatever made me relate to a heroin snorting, drug dealer’s wife, I have no idea.  But Mia Wallace became the name I’d use when meeting new people, getting credit for new accounts, buying and selling on eBay, or even filling out job applications.  I know this because after coming out of my “state of mental obscurity”,  I saw the havoc she had wreaked on my life.

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I distinctly remember in early 2007 looking into a mirror.  I hadn’t slept in almost a week.  In my mind, the mirror was cracked – shattered just like me, just like the skin & bones reflection I saw, just like Mia.  I was missing something and I just couldn’t take being her anymore.  As I stared in the mirror, I cried and cried.  I cried out to God, begging him, please help me to change.  And He granted me a renewed strength.  Instead of crashing, as usual, I knew I had to first override Mia.  I got to a doctor’s office that very day and insisted on a medication that would make me sleep, that I could take regularly at night to finally get stable.  It took a lot of convincing to not get committed that day.  But that night I slept, and the next night too.  It took a few weeks but Mia slowly faded away.

I recently ordered my credit report. Mia Wallace’s name is still associated with my social security number.  I guess a part of her will always be with me.

Double Talk Quote: “God’s way is perfect.”  2 Sam-e-lonians 22:31 – Hope, trying to say Second Samuel 22:31

Bible Verse:  “And I will execute great vengeance upon them with furious rebukes; and they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall lay my vengeance upon them.” Ezekiel 25:17

Word that has Earned its meaning: Subconscious

Relatable Lyrics:  “Flowers on the Wall” by the Statler Brothers

“I keep hearin’ you’re concerned about my happiness
But all that thought you’re givin’ me is conscience I guess
If I was walkin’ in your shoes, I wouldn’t worry none
While you ‘n’ your friends are worried about me I’m havin’ lots of fun
Countin’ flowers on the wall
That don’t bother me at all
Playin’ solitaire till dawn with a deck of fifty-one…

mia

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Physical Illnesses and Spiritual Ailments

twins sleeping

Physical Illnesses and Spiritual Ailments

Back in March, I started writing a post about sicknesses and ailments.  I wrote:

“Last week everyone in my immediate family (including Grandma), came down with a stomach virus.  It was quite a week, hard and hectic.  I felt like I was losing a very frustrating game of wack-a-mole.  As soon as I’d get one kid down, two more would pop up with tummy explosions and there would be more messes to clean and more comforting to do.  This week, Amor injured his back, and it is bad.  He’s not been this down or out in years…” March 18, 2015 – This is an example of how it had been in our house since last Fall.

Little did I know there was more where that came from.  The very next month, during the week before Amor and I were set to get baptized, every family member (except myself) went through yet another spell of tummy troubles and high fevers.

Then just before an important Church retreat, another family member came down with Lice.  Lice.  Twice.  Really?  I helped her comb the knits out, reminiscent of just a few months ago, when we with through the same thing with Mica and Hope.  Lice twice. (Here’s a past sample of what I’m talkin’ ’bout: https://theearthquakers.wordpress.com/2014/10/29/what-a-week-wednesday/)

Last week was Small Group Rally day at our church.  I was supposed to run one of the booths during all services except for one, during which I usually teach in the 4-5 year olds’ class. But both babies spiked high fevers the night before, so I couldn’t take them to the nursery and therefore was unable to serve.  I took them with me to the rally, wearing them, just kind of hiding out in the back while Amor took care of the human interaction.

Time out paragraph:  I have written a lot, but haven’t published much about my Spiritual vs. Physical thought processes and theories.  See, I don’t want to come across as crazy!  But I do believe there is a Spiritual realm.  That’s scriptural.  But because I have Bipolar paranoia tendencies, I have to constantly test what I’m thinking to make sure it lines up with the Word of God.  (I’m sure this will be linked to future posts dedicated specifically to how I decipher whether I’m being paranoid or whether there is something Spiritual happening.  For now, please trust that “I’m not crazy”, just a Christian with Bipolar Disorder!)  Time in again!

At first, I thought we were just unlucky.  When a sickness comes on any of my 3 kids it always seem to occur on a Saturday afternoon, right after their doctor’s office closes until Monday.  But then I realized that almost all of these ailments, even the illnesses and health problems of our extended family members happened right before a big church event.  There has to be a Spiritual component there.  This was not just physical.

So, I took stock of my own physical well-being over the past year.  I’ve experienced the following non-contagious problems:

  • Anxiety / Panic attacks – which have dissipated fairly quickly upon taking medication and praying (compared to some past experiences).
  • Mastitis (a painful and serious infection breastfeeding women sometimes get) – which came on suddenly one late Saturday night.  My doctor called in a prescription, which would be ready Sunday afternoon.  I went to serve at church anyway, despite the pain and fever.  In the preschool room, my sister, Starla, with whom I teach, laid hands on me and prayed.  I felt the lump dissipate; no need for meds.  All pain subsided by the end of the day.
  • Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) – twice, took over the counter medication & drank plenty of Cranberry juice and it went away on its own without needing medical intervention.
  • Severe back pain -at least twice – treated with heating pad, otc medication and determination.
  • Mania / Hypomania – I’ll take that over depression ANY DAY!

Then I took a good, hard look at all the illnesses that have been through my house over the past year that I have NOT contracted, despite them being highly contagious:

  • Thrush (yeast that babies sometimes get in their mouths, often very painful to breastfeeding mothers) – Bella had it twice, Brooks didn’t catch it at all, amazing!  It was only a bit of a nuisance to me, physically speaking.
  • Lice – twice x2, so four times altogether throughout the house.  I was never infected.
  • Influenza (THE FLU) – everybody had it except me.  Bella’s was bad enough to need a nebulizer.  I had mild symptoms of a cold, that’s it.
  • Several (long) bouts of the common cold.
  • Bronchitis- Grandma got this after catching a cold.
  • Several bouts of stomach viruses – I was nauseated a time or two, but never got sick!

Again back in March I wrote:  “I’ve felt spiritually attacked in a physical way over the past couple of months.  But I refused to let any physical illness get me down!  I am determined to take some ibuprofen, pray, and push through.  Praise God!”

Every time someone has gotten sick, I have settled it within my Spirit that I’m not going to catch that.  I’ve not been afraid.  I have not spoken sickness over myself.  I have not claimed it.  So far, God has protected me from getting seriously sick and I’ve been able to take care of my babies and family members.  It’s like He’s put a protective shield around me.  I won’t boast or say I’m never going to get sick again BUT I can say that, for the first year of my babies’ lives, God’s had my back and kept me going. Amen

Double Talk Quote:  “That was about as long as a Sponge Bob episode.” – Mica after I read her this article (Sorry, I know it was a longgie but a goodie)

Bible Verse: In addition to all this, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.  Ephesians 6:16

Word that has Lost its meaning:  sanitized

Relatable Lyrics: 4 Him “Where There is Faith” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcJ-iEnHn50&index=33&list=PLvTDChO_aBNqeGx4m-6Plh_5WXI0_JG7_  “..There is a peace like a child sleeping, Hope everlasting in He who is able to bear every burden, to heal every hurt in my heart…”

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