Hello everyone. My name is Angela. I live in the Midwest part of the USA. My blog is Https://www.iammyownisland.wordpress.com
Because We all need to find a way to live with ourselves
I can’t remember how long ago I started it but it has been several years. I write it like a journal. It has become a support system for me as this community is so gracious and caring. I am a social worker by trade and am a single mom raising three boys. Two of them with mental health issues themselves. I love make-up and fashion. My children and my parents are the most important people in my life. I am blessed to have them. I am affected by mental illness as I struggle with acceptance and believing in recovery.
I always knew I was different in my head even as a teenager. I was often suicidal and would go from being so happy to being so sad. I hid it well for years. I was the life of the party and never let anything stop me. This is also why for me I never did any hard drugs. I was fearful they would kill me. I just knew it was more than depression. My darkest days came after I took my job as a social worker. I am good at it, but it is stressful which brings on the negative of the disorder in greater forms, I feel. I decided when my doctor wasn’t listening to me to get a psych eval as I knew I had more than depression and it turned out I have bipolar with Borderline Personality disorder. I got the double whammy. This leads me to my darkest day. I had no hope and when I get to no hope I know I will become suicidal. I know it is taboo to talk about suicide, but it is something I fight in my head sometimes days on end sometimes I can go months and be fine but if we talk about darkest days these are them. I just don’t want to live. The pain is too great. I got that way a year and a half ago and spent ten days in the hospital. It ended my marriage which really was a blessing in disguise but of course has its own regrets. Once again I advocated for myself and made a tough choice. That is a key for me in all our mental health journeys we need to advocate for ourselves as best we can.
As I said above, recovery is a hard concept for me in mental health terms. But if I had to think of it as attainable I would say two things advocacy and hope keep me in check on maintaining some kind of recovery. Medication is a must but finding that right combination is difficult. Right now, I think I need a med change and I plan to advocate that at my next appointment. I struggle with accepting having a mental illness on some days. I question why we as people have been chosen to be different and to have this struggle. I am lucky as I have had my job for six years and I have family that loves me, but it doesn’t diminish the anguish I often feel. I accept that this is a life-long disorder and there is no cure. I accept that it makes me more empathetic and a better person in different ways than others. If I can just get that sweet spot in recovery I know I can accept it all that much better. I am just not there yet. I guess it comes down to having patience. The number one thing for me is I have hope that things will improve, and I will have more good days then bad. That I will get better. I am in a rough spot currently so this is hard to write and be super positive but that is the reality of bipolar. It is so ying-yang. I use mindfulness and grounding skills to stay focused. I have started using gratitude to remember what blessings I do have. I am working on naming my feelings and regulating them. What is illness and what is a regular human emotion. All in all, I am a work in progress and really that makes me no different than anyone else. Thank you for taking the time to read my jumble of words and thank you for allowing me to share my story.
Here is a link to Angela’s Blog titled I am My Own Island.
Thank you for sharing your story.
You are an amazing person and a strong survivor.
You deserve much praise and honor.
Your story is your glory.
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Thank you for being you.
Much love and hugs, Sue
“There’s no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
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