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JanCarol

JanCarol - undiagnosed! Off all "bipolar" drugs!

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JanCarol

Hi !

Frank asks:
 

On 12/5/2019 at 5:41 AM, Frankgrimes said:

 Did you have the burning and physical pain and temperature issues during your taper?

 

It's complicated, because while I was on lithium, I lost complete interest in everything, and so - the doctors were happy to take my ovaries & thyroid, so I have a complex endocrine problem.

The lithium damaged my kidneys - I still have bouts of what I call "kidney dumping" where the kidneys dump so much fluid it is impossible to sleep because I have to get up every half hour.  (When on lithium, I had full blown diabetes insipidus, and it was like this every night.)   It's possible - with water and electrolytes - to prevent these.  They usually come when I am stressed and not paying as much attention to how much and what I am drinking.  

 

I have chronic pain, pretty much all over.  It doesn't take much to set me off.  But is that from the lithium?  The injuries?  The thyroid (chronic tendinitis)?  I can't say that is all about the lithium.

 

For several years I had autonomic dysregulation - I couldn't control my temperature and went absolutely mad with overheat and cold.  I lived rugged up for most of the year, even though I live in a subtropical climate (like middle of Mexican coast).  But then I would overheat.  Then freeze.  Then overheat.  I still have a narrow window of what is comfortable for me - sweats can turn me into an evil witch.

 

For the pain, my best answer is magnesium.  I take 400-600 mg of good quality magnesium daily.  I soak in magnesium baths.  If I miss my magnesium baths I will get painful cramps.  When I get the opportunity, I go to the Float Tanks, which are saturated with Epsom Salts magnesium.  I can never eliminate the pain, as I'm buggered six ways to Sunday - but I can feel better.

I get a lot of massage, at least 2x a month.  Again - I cannot say that it is the lithium which did this to me!  But it is easy for me to overtire, easy for me to become racked with pain.  I survive day-to-day with a topical CBD balm.  This is the strongest one I've found:  Saving Grace Relief Rub

 

The other damage I'm left with is what the medicos call "pre-diabetic" - or what I call metabolic disorder.  I'm fat.  It is extremely hard for me to lose weight, even though I walk & do tai chi daily, go to karate 1-2x a week.  Eat simply.  I probably eat half of what my husband does, and to lose 100 grams is a major victory.  Additionally, my digestive system goes out of balance very easily - and I get IBS.  I've been working on my gut biome with prescription probiotics.  I haven't quite gotten to the poo transplant, but I had IBS for 7 years.

 

Additionally (and I do think this is the lithium) I had a long period of cardiac irregularities.  I think on my thread I called it the Badger in my chest.  The cardio folks called them ectopic heartbeats - and said that exercise made it better.  Well I had been exercising, and I did take some herbs (hawthorn, motherwort, beet powder), and continued to exercise, and that just cleared up.  Went away like it was never ever there.  I think it was something I had to go through as a withdrawal symptom.

 

Moodwise, I am still challenged.  I have to do my daily rituals and make sure there are enough aminos and fat in my diet (that's meat, folks!) to stay on the path. I have a default to suicidal ideation anytime things get rough - from years of being suicidal and walking with it.  I'm not saying I am in any danger, or that I ever have been in any danger.  It just wears one down to have to "not entertain" those thoughts, or to "change the channel" because those thoughts are heavy and have gravity.  So I perform my daily rituals which are, currently:

Lots of fish oil (4000 iu) and Magnesium (400-600 mg)

Some medicinal aminos - NAC, Inositol
Lemon Water with MSM and mushroom complex for digestion

Sun walk (must do or mood falls) - challenging in 100 degree weather

Medicine Wheel - greeting the medicine wheel to ground and orient and pray and prepare for what I have to do.

Sleep - about 9-10 hours a night

Exercise daily - about 20-30 minutes of tai chi plus extra practice when I teach and go to classes.

Meditation daily - just 10 minutes, to still my heart and center my mind.

 

Then there's the social maintenance of - talking to people (sometimes on the internet, sometimes face to face - I hate the telephone).

This is about 2 hours of "maintenance" - sometimes more on karate or tai chi days.  Just maintenance - the bare minimum of what I need to survive in this world.

 

I don't know how "normal" people do it.  Just run and run and run and never stop to see where they are in the universe, or take care of their bodies.  I think this is why we have a sick society.

I hope you see the Sun today (I won't, as it's too blasted  hot out there!  but I will pass through sunshine on my way to my massage!  AHhhhhhh!)

 

 

 

Edited by JanCarol
clean up sloppy writing

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JackieDecides
On 12/5/2019 at 6:58 PM, JanCarol said:

Sun walk (must do or mood falls) - challenging in 100 degree weather

 

I so understand this - my mood has been SO much different since I moved to a climate with much less sun. it's supposed to be cloudy all day today (maybe all weekend) and I dread this.  I use my Happy Light but can't tell if it's helping or not. 

 

 

On 12/5/2019 at 6:58 PM, JanCarol said:

I don't know how "normal" people do it.  Just run and run and run and never stop to see where they are in the universe, or take care of their bodies.  I think this is why we have a sick society.

 

I think this is VERY true. 

 

I'm sorry your life is so hard but I'm glad you know how to take care of yourself. ❤️

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JanCarol

So the thought came to me this morning:  The whole world is going into withdrawal.

Some of it is cold turkey, some of it is tapering.  The scarcity of goods, as factories shut down.  The scarcity of money as businesses go under, people are laid off.  The isolation of, well, isolation.  The loss of freedoms.  The increase of police state, quarantine, and the inflation of medical powers.

If I look at this COVID19 crisis as withdrawal, we are in for interesting times.  And the time scale is longer than anyone is predicting.

My thoughts are that in a years time (March 2021) the dust will start to settle and we will see what we are left with.  It's not totally appropriate to talk about COVID19, but y'all are aware of withdrawal, and the rest of the world is not.  Most people have no idea what they are in for.  But if you look at it as withdrawal - the same advice applies.

Be kind to yourself.

Wait, be patient.

Be curious.

Take care of your body.

And be kind to yourself some more.

Interesting times.  I hope you see the sun today!  (good for immune system, too)

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Shep
Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, JanCarol said:

Most people have no idea what they are in for.  But if you look at it as withdrawal - the same advice applies.

 

The parallels are striking, aren't they?

 

If anybody knows how to shelter in place with NetFlix, it's someone who's been through withdrawal. 

 

We'll survive this. 

Edited by Shep
fixed typo
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Glosmom

Told my mother the other day, "I have been sheltering in place for 4 years with Glo.  Nothing about the world seems different to me right now. :) "  Wishing peace and hope to all who are suffering.  Glosmom

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JackieDecides
On 3/30/2020 at 6:49 PM, JanCarol said:

It's not totally appropriate to talk about COVID19

 

why do you think so? it's a huge change for some of us and we can't help but be stressed by it as everyone is. why not talk about it? 

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JanCarol
3 hours ago, JackieDecides said:

 

why do you think so? it's a huge change for some of us and we can't help but be stressed by it as everyone is. why not talk about it? 

 

I talked about it, didn't I?

Not inappropriate, just not as relevant to this forum as a more general one.  Not *totally* relevant.  Other than as a stressor we all feel.  It feels like 911 every day.

The only way out of this is through - just like withdrawal.  In my Prayers, it has come to me that if we respond with fear, we lose.  The only way through is to respond with love.  Care for each other.  Learn how to be kind in closed quarters.  Learn how to communicate caring from a distance.  Make sure our neighbours, loved ones, and strangers are fed and cared for.  Learn about strangers and "The Other" so that we can care.

Fear will only make things worse and is a waste of energy.  Focus on what is important, let that rise to the top of your attention and awareness.

The virus will do what it will do - just like in withdrawal, the drugs will do what they will do.  It is what it is.  There are ways to ameliorate with self-care.  For the virus it is keeping hands and face clean and protected0. And sadly, avoiding human contact.   For the drugs, it's keep the changes simple and soothe the nervous system.  Very similar feelings for a different phenomenon.

Take care yourself, and - talk freely.  I just didn't think it's right to fill these pages like the Evening News - all COVID all the time.  (and oh yeah turn off the news once you know what you need to).


I hope you see the Sun today.

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FarmGirlWorks
On 3/30/2020 at 6:49 PM, JanCarol said:

So the thought came to me this morning:  The whole world is going into withdrawal.

Some of it is cold turkey, some of it is tapering.  The scarcity of goods, as factories shut down.  The scarcity of money as businesses go under, people are laid off.  The isolation of, well, isolation.  The loss of freedoms.  The increase of police state, quarantine, and the inflation of medical powers.

 

Yes! Spot on! Thank you for so clearly articulating this. I was irritated with people who are going "crazy" at the injustice of being isolated. And then becoming fearful and dark... oh how that is familiar territory.

 

Like @Glosmom said, we've been in isolation for a long time... We already have the tools and know how to get through this.

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Happy2Heal
7 hours ago, FarmGirlWorks said:

Like @Glosmom said, we've been in isolation for a long time... We already have the tools and know how to get through this.

 

 

I understand that for a lot of us, this is true, but for  me it's the opposite

 

being in an unfeeling medicated fog for decades, *that* is when I was in insolation. I rarely left my home except to see a dr, get more drugs or buy food twice a month. I  had no friends, didn't socialize at all, had no job, nothing. I had my pets and my computer and that was it.

I lost nearly 2/3 of my life to being medicated and detached from life.

I can't even account for what I did with all that time, I don't know.


Getting off the drugs, that's what opened up my life. The anxiety of withdrawal was so awful, it was worse than the anxiety of going out and  meeting and being around other people. It forced me to get out and do things. It literally gave me a life that I never had before.

Now I have friends, I have a social life, I have a volunteer job, I enjoy going places and doing things with others, as well as doing some things alone when the mood strikes me.

 

so this enforced isolation now is very triggering to me. It's deeply upsetting. It reminds me of a time when I was more like the walking dead. I hate it!!


Many of my friends have at least a spouse or roommate or others whom they share their living space with, and some are still able to work and more or less required to) they are not totally alone as some of us are.
I bristle with anger when they keep suggesting that staying home is not that much of a sacrifice- well, maybe for them, it isn't, but they are not totally ALONE.

 

I get annoyed when they repeat on the updates on our local TV channel that we are "all in this together", of course I know what they mean, but no, we are not "together" in a literal sense and that's the problem for some of us.

 

This just underscores, I think, how WD recovery is different for everyone and how dealing this new challenge can be different for us too.

 

My main emotional response to our "current affairs" so far has been anger.

it's disrupted my life in so  many ways JUST when it was starting to get really really good. I'm 64 yrs old, I'm getting closer to that finish line and don't want any more of my precious time here to be stolen from me. This all makes me very angry.

 

I think that grief is surely a part of it too- and isn't anger one of those stages of grief? along with denial? (I was in denial at first, and probably still am to a certain degree, if only to avoid the intense anger and grief)

 

@JanCarol as always I enjoy your perspective on things and am glad that you shared it.

10 hours ago, JanCarol said:

Fear will only make things worse and is a waste of energy.  Focus on what is important, let that rise to the top of your attention and awareness.

 

 

well said! hard to do but worth trying at least!!

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JackieDecides
10 hours ago, JanCarol said:

if we respond with fear, we lose. 

true and I guess it's true for life as a whole

 

10 hours ago, JanCarol said:

 turn off the news once you know what you need to

 

I wish everyone understood this - same with facebook

3 minutes ago, Happy2Heal said:

this enforced isolation now is very triggering to me. It's deeply upsetting. It reminds me of a time when I was more like the walking dead. I hate it!!

 

I'm so sorry - I feel like it's worse for me, too.  

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JackieDecides
10 hours ago, JanCarol said:

I talked about it, didn't I?

yes, and I'm glad! I meant to post earlier (and got distracted by the 12 other windows I have open on my computer trying to connect with people) that I was very glad to read your post and agree with a lot of what you said. 

 

I have been trying hard to get over "envy" but I continue to struggle with it. now I really envy those who are able to work from home and it irritates me to hear people complain about it.  

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JanCarol
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Happy2Heal said:

being in an unfeeling medicated fog for decades, *that* is when I was in insolation. I rarely left my home except to see a dr, get more drugs or buy food twice a month. I  had no friends, didn't socialize at all, had no job, nothing. I had my pets and my computer and that was it.

I lost nearly 2/3 of my life to being medicated and detached from life.

I can't even account for what I did with all that time, I don't know.


Getting off the drugs, that's what opened up my life. The anxiety of withdrawal was so awful, it was worse than the anxiety of going out and  meeting and being around other people. It forced me to get out and do things. It literally gave me a life that I never had before.

Now I have friends, I have a social life, I have a volunteer job, I enjoy going places and doing things with others, as well as doing some things alone when the mood strikes me.

 

so this enforced isolation now is very triggering to me. It's deeply upsetting. It reminds me of a time when I was more like the walking dead. I hate it!!

 


Hey Happy2Heal, good to see you here!

I hear what you are saying.  The same is true for me.  And it is different for everyone - just like this COVID thing is different for everyone.  Some of us have loved ones in the front line of human care.  Some of us have isolated elderly relatives.  Some of us have scarcity of goods (I expect that to be a major problem here in Oz because of the tyranny of distance).  All of us do not get enough contact.

When I was on drugs, I was in this socially isolated little bubble.  Sure, I had friends and made some effort on their behalf - but it was mostly selfish.

THEN, coming off them - it was like the way the colours are brighter when you are happy.  These people in your life were able to show me THEIR lives, their cares, their families, and we shared our concerns.  We would have deep experiences - and the simple comforting cuppa tea ones.  We learned things together.  We communed on so many levels.

They are making an effort to keep in touch by telephone.  But it's hard to communicate that I hate the telephone.  Give me a cuppa tea any day.  Doesn't matter where, or often with whome (I love all my friends).

I used to take / make 1 phone call per week.

I am getting 1-2 a day.  It's getting so that I'm telling people - maybe tomorrow?

This is also hampered by the bad knee.  Because I hate the telephone, I pace when I talk.  I hang out the laundry (have a headset - helps with hearing impairment, too).  I make my own cuppa tea (but it's not the same as a shared cuppa tea).  If I'm really struggling, I quietly play a stupid game on FB and listen.  

Made worse by:  I haven't been doing anything.  So have very VERY little small talk to make.  I can talk about the thoughts I have when I look at the sky.  When I face the rising sun and think about new beginnings, when I face the setting sun and think about change.  The two of these together are blowing my mind right now. . . 

But that doesn't answer the first questions:  How are you?  How you going?  How's Hubby?

Same, same, same.

 

1 hour ago, Happy2Heal said:

My main emotional response to our "current affairs" so far has been anger.

 

Har, yes!  I hear you! 

 

I watch - minimal news.  Maybe one headline a day.  If an article or video really grabs me, I'll check it out.  Most of my information now is from first reading this epidemiological analysis:  https://medium.com/@tomaspueyo/coronavirus-act-today-or-people-will-die-f4d3d9cd99ca

 

Once I understood that, and understood the curves and timescales we are looking at, I just watch the stats.  So far I've found Turkey, Greece, Italy, China (amazing flat curve now), Australia, US, & UK most interesting.  Yes, I have fear.

I got an insight tonight from watching The Hobbit.  It's a paraphrase from Thorin Oakenshield (I think?) or one of his mates.

Fear.  We all have fear.  Courage is when you move through it anyway.

 

Then there's the Frank Herbert Dune quote. . . 

Quote

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

 

And I remain.  Yes, I fear.  But it's just another feeling.  And fear has a way of making things bigger than they are.  I'm not saying this isn't big - it's huge.  Probably the defining moment of my life.  Of all that I've experienced, this is the one which will make or break me.  But it will do what it does.  All I can do is my best.

 

1 hour ago, Happy2Heal said:

I think that grief is surely a part of it too- and isn't anger one of those stages of grief? along with denial?

 

Brilliant insight!  YES I grieve.  We had it GOOD.  And now we're gonna get it good.  And in a year's time, what will our lives look like?  (I will keep my thoughts to myself on that one)

And we're good people!  Like - even at my worst, what did I do to deserve extinction?  Or to be thrown back to the survival level of being human.  and yes:  YOU ARSEHOLES!!!!! that thought that gold (shades of "The Hobbit" again, Dragon Fever) is worth destroying people?

There is an excellent book about grieving - preparing us for this:  Francis Weller, "The Wild Edge of Sorrow."  She's very poetic, too, which makes her a good read.

 

37 minutes ago, JackieDecides said:

I have been trying hard to get over "envy" but I continue to struggle with it. now I really envy those who are able to work from home and it irritates me to hear people complain about it. 

 

Hey Jackie, thanks for reading - I know that I have it better than most in the USA (where my family and past friends are).  I have it better than many in Oz.  People care about me.  I care about them.  What more can we do?  (I'm gonna have to figure out how to call mobile phones without paying a fortune - they are charged by the minute here to the caller - and all my friends only have mobiles....)

EDIT ADDITION:  Those who are complaining - do you remember what it was like when you first came to SA?  Or anyone does?  And there's been a medication problem, and attempts to withdraw have thrown you into a state of extreme panic?  They're still in denial, too.  Remember how you learned the time scale - OH this will take awhile...and as you started watching it unfold, you were more able to adjust?  People are going to have huge varying degrees of acceptance (what H2H was talking about above), denial, anger, bargaining.  In China, they just welded your doors shut for quarantine.  Will we need it to be that drastic?  Anyhow, reality will dawn on different people at different times.  Read the epistemologicaly article above.  It will help you understand the time frames.  I've tried communicating it to others - just like I've tried to communicate the dangers of psych drugs and the hazards of withdrawal from them!  They will hear what they are ready to hear.

And thank you both for the stimulating conversation.  Hmmm.  Connection?  Just a little bit.  With strangers - that we know.

I hope you see the Sun today!

Edited by JanCarol

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