To say my life before medication was chaotic is an understatement. Emotionally I was all over the place. But physically, I was doing pretty good. As far as I knew I was a normal person, with normal feelings. I always knew I was different than most. Wondering if there was an explanation for the way I was. I wondered if there was a reason for my chaotic behavior and rapid mood swings. Prior to my diagnosis, I had little reason to believe that there was anything wrong with me. I had little reason to believe that I suffered from any form of mental illness. Even despite suspecting it myself.
Before my diagnosis, I thought I was just dramatic and immature, believing I was simply weak minded and needed to grow up. Although I didn’t really know how. Life before medication was just life for me. And I lived for the day. Broken relationships and job hopping filled my life. I lived alone because it was just easier that way. I did not have to justify my actions, and I was free to do whatever I wanted when I wanted. The only way I felt normal was to abuse drugs. Full of energy, I could go days without sleep due to what I now know is bipolar mania. Even feeling supercharged at times.
I lived a secluded life, even traveling alone. Full of anger I avoided contact with people as much as possible. However, I was always depressed and lonely despite choosing to seclude myself. I avoided contact with other people because I found it nearly impossible to trust anyone else. Living in a near constant state of fight-or-flight, I walked around with my body tight and my fists clenched. Always torqued up and ready to strike, paranoia controlled my life, my thoughts, and my actions.
Life after medication – Who am I now?
Only four months have passed since my initial diagnosis. Originally I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and PTSD. But in the weeks preceding my diagnosis, I began realizing that I suffered from symptoms outside of Bipolar Disorder. I realized I actually suffered from the symptoms of psychosis. As a result, that diagnosis would later change to Schizoaffective Disorder bipolar type. I have had my medications switched 4 times as a result. These changes were the result of side effects of the medications. Side effects ranging from mood changes and feelings of anxiety to physical muscle twitches and spasms.
Lately, I have felt unsettled and restless, like I cannot stop moving. Even spending a lot of time feeling tired and sleeping more. The worst part is not being able to focus on anything. I sit here in front of this computer for a few minutes feeling unable to concentrate. Here lately, I have been unable to write more than a paragraph in my blog, only to be distracted by something else. I really have not been on medications long enough to even tell how well they are working. I don’t even know who I am yet without the mania and paranoia. It is still too soon to tell. I just hope the new me is not a medicated me.