Recovering

It was 2004 and I was happy. I was planning on going to school for another year and finishing my degree in English Writing. I was losing weight and felt good about myself. I don't remember if I was on medication or not. I don't believe I was. My husband had been out of work for a year and we couldn't afford health insurance. We lost the house and foreclosed. At the last minute my husband got a job at RTD as a bus driver. We moved out and into a duplex that was  owned by one of the members of our church. He was good enough to let us live there for 800 dollars a month for a two bedroom apartment. Since we had the foreclosure we had bad credit and couldn't find another place to live so we agreed to live there. We lived there for a year and a half before moving to Glendale where we live now.

The good feelings I was having intensified in June. I was seeing a counselor and started medication. I was taking Depakote and Wellbutrin. The Depakote wreaked havoc with my menstrual periods and the Wellbutrin gave me insomnia but I was stable; so I thought. I started to feel better and better and everything seemed to be going great. I started focusing on my counseler who was a young male in his thirties. We had good sessions. I felt good because finally I had  a sympathetic ear to my struggles with depression. I slowly began to have a delusion about my counselor. I thought we should be together and that it was God's will. I kept my thoughts to myself. The last week of June things got out of hand.

I had a delusion that I was married by God to my counselor. I began having sexual fantasies about a person who was invisible and was talking to me through my mind. I began hearing voices and thought that God was talking to me. I had the delusion that I was spiritually married to my counselor and that God was talking to me. I had a breakdown in the Brown Palace Hotel where I felt God was leading me to. I ended up in the hospital but was released that night. My poor husband had a scare where the police stormed the apartment believing that he had a gun because I had a delusion that he was going to kill himself. It scared him shitless. He told me later after I got out of the hospital. I felt so bad to have put him in that position.

I spent two weeks in the hospital. At first I was really delusional and had to be in lock down. I couldn't go to the bathroom and peed on the floor. I tried to escape and was caught so they locked me in a room for a couple of days. It was really bad. I was delusional and hypersexual and really combative. They gave me Lithium and Haldol the whole time I was there. Then they released me after a week. I was still sick, though. I was delusional again and my husband called the police again and I went into the hospital. I spent a total of two weeks in the hospital. I was discharged but I still was hearing voices. I didn't understand why they were releasing me. I was on Lithium, Haldol, and Resperdol.

I came home and was really scared because I was still hearing voices and seeing things. I stayed home and tried to stay safe. I didn't want to go back to the hospital. The Resperdol kicked in and the voices and hallucinations went away after a few days. After that I began to be very depressed. I wanted to die. I was suicidal but I didn't want to go to the hospital so I stayed in bed all day. I don't remember much of 2005 and 2006. I was so depressed. I layed in bed all day and stayed up at night. When I was in the hospital I couldn't sleep even with all the meds I had in my system. A couple of times I went to the ER because I thought I was having another manic attact because I couldn't sleep. I realized later that my biological clock had been altered and I stayed up mainly at night.

I sought treatment form a mental health center but they rejected me because I had been in the hospital. I was so frustrated about this. I found a private psychiatrist but she was expensive. We paid her fee so  I could get the medications I needed. She referred me to a center where they charged less money and I have been going there for the last seven years. I have been on Lithium and Haldol and medication for my thyroid.

The mental health system in the country is broken. It's almost impossible to get disability even if you need it. I applied three times and was rejected all three times. The last time I used a lawyer and was rejected. It's tough. Mental health centers are more concerned with liability than treating patients. If you have no money and no insurance you will go untreated and end up homeless if you have no family or friends to help you out or to stay with while you try to get help from the State. People fall through the cracks all the time.

It's been a real struggle living on one income. My husband has been under pressure since he is the sole breadwinner. He is now unemployed and we are living on savings. I am working with Vocational Rehabilitation to find a job. I feel better now and I think I can hold down at least a part time job.My husband is under tremendous pressure as our money runs out for bills. We have no health insurance so my medication costs more. I need to be on my medication no matter what. I can't afford to be in the hospital at all.

I had two goals the last eight years. Stay alive and stay out of the hospital. We had to file bankruptcy so we couldn't pay a big medical bill. I have learned to cope with my depression but honestly I couldn't hold down a job even if I wanted to. The medications I take keep me out of the hospital but they don't take away the symptoms completely. I still have bad days but I think I can be consistent enough to hold down a job. I might have to work at night because I just don't sleep at night. Holding down a day job would be a challenge. I need regular sleep to keep from going manic.

Back in 1993 I was newly diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. I didn't have a place to live or a job. My father let me live in one of his rentals for free. I was getting used to my medication and having depressions. I was on food stamps and trying to learn to work and keep a job. I feel like I am right back in that situation again. I feel like I am in survival mode. I need to stand up for myself and make sure I get the help I need to find a job. I need to work on my writing and try to teach myself a skill. It's really hard right now. With both me and my husband out of work in such a bad economy one's worst fears get's a hold of one. I hope to be working by October and I hope my husband will be working too. I want to stay positive and hopeful. I got through 1993 and  I can get through 2012 too.