What’s been going on with my life since I published Diary of a Bipolar
It’s been quite a long time since I haven’t written here; or, better yet, haven’t written much of anything. After my last posts back in 2008 I had a lot of ups and downs and have come to accept my bipolar condition and chronic (by definition) status.
In 2014 I pretty much had no severe episodes the whole year, which raised a different set of problems: doing the thing they call “living”. Suddenly I got hit by a lot of things I didn’t care about while all those symptomatic years, like my ever lonely relationship status, a mismanaged career at age 42, a fat body and an all-time low self esteem. Combine all these with the occasional mild depressions and the complete lack of my mild hypomanias, which I used to love and gave a little flavor to my life. If I try to look at things in a half full glass-style, I have to say that somehow I’ve managed to keep a new job for over 2.5 years, been able to pay my mortgage and still have a family and all its members alive since my grandparents died years ago.
I am now under weekly talk therapy with a psychologist, but she seems to be overly focused on the issue that I have no steady partner in my life. I tell her that It’s incredibly difficult for me (this deserves another post) but she insists that I just settle with an average woman and love and sex drive will naturally come. I don’t agree since I tried this with a way better than average girl and it didn’t work, even though I tried my best. So, for this reason, I’m thinking about changing therapists; this is specially tricky since my life insurance only cover a small group of them. I believe I will go for a man this time and hope for the best.
My career, or lack thereof, is something completely different. In the end I got fired from the job that pretty much has defined me as a worker since I started. I got laid off after 5 years. After that I tried an entrepreneurship and failed miserably, which left me depressed and with a low self esteem. So a friend offered me a job in a small company, something new for me (we’re talking about a workforce of 4), but proposed a good salary, all things considered. I took it. Thing is, it was a career shift because on my previous job I was a sales engineer, and this job offer was a computer systems administrator (something most of my colleagues work on). It’s your typical geek job, totally opposed to what I did before. Most of the day alone at the office in front of a computer screen managing databases, systems and connections. I thought I’d go for this job for 6 months or so, while I looked for another one, but 2 years and 9 months I’m still sitting here alone in the office with the 65 year old assistant. She’s a sweet lady, but we don’t have much in common. It’s not like I haven’t tried to get another job, in fact I looked for one most of 2014, where I participated in about 6 selection processes, but I just landed one at a large corporation, doing pretty much the same I did at the previous corporation, but in the end got offered a lousy salary (about 50% less of what I did 8 years ago in the other company, which is a direct competitor). The money just wasn’t enough.
I used to workout at the gym a lot until 2012, but later that year I got a back hernia, which crippled me from training; something I had done for 20 years and had kept me in good shape and boosted me with a very decent self esteem. In 2014 the pain was much less or nonexistent, so I went back to the gym but had a series of injuries on both shoulder joints and so I could never reach a decent body and I kept on accumulating fat. Fast forward to 2015 and I’m hitting the gym again, but using much lower weights and scared of getting injured again. I still have a shoulder injury inside the joint (labrum) which is only 100% recoverable if surgery is done. I’ve chosen not to have the operation and do some kinetic treatment which so far has been decent and I have made it to be able to train with low weights, as I said. The result is pretty much no body improvement. Add to this that I’m 42 now and as a result muscle growth is very hard and the same goes for fat loss.
In general, I have a permanent unhappiness; I guess mostly because I’m not 100% free from depression. My psychiatrist is against adding an antidepressant in the mix (currently I only take Lamotrigine, a mood stabilizer) since it could make me unstable again. He’s just doing his work: making sure a bipolar patient doesn’t kill himself. Some days I feel better, if only for a couple of hours, and think that I’m coming out of this crappy state, but in the end it only lasts a short while.
What can I learn from all of this? Sadly, not much; mostly because I’m not in control of my emotions or willpower, that’s the honest truth. I can only hope for those moments that I’m more productive to actually get some stuff done, but I always end up celebrating instead of doing things. I go out with friends, party and drink. The usual routine. Some days there are exceptions, but most of the decisions or things I have to do scare me to death, especially when they involve financial or emotional risk. Proof of this is that it has taken me almost 7 years to write anything here. This pretty much happened after I finished my book (Diary of a Bipolar). Let’s hope it sticks.
Best wishes to you all and feel free to comment.
Filed under: Personal | 2 Comments
Tags: bipolar, depression, job, lifestyle, relationships, workout