So, I do have one thing “wrong” with me that you can’t really see the vast majority of the time. I can’t really say how long that I’ve had it, as it wasn’t until I got to Texas that the diagnosis was finally, painfully made. Unlike the Factor Five, I can’t even come close to explaining it, and I’m more afraid of it manifesting itself in one of my children than the FVL. It has also been what made me remark that I am the “bad gene receptacle” of my brothers and I. It’s bipolar. There, I said it.
At first, the shrinks I saw tended to just think that it was any number of petty little things. Maybe I was just some undisciplined brat. Perhaps it was PTSD from childhood traumas and that I was just coping in my own way. Or it was Borderline Personality Disorder, and I was just more or less screwed because there really wasn’t all that much that could be done for that.
So, countless years of sporadic help, I finally started the road to being properly diagnosed, and even more slowly, in fits and starts, getting properly medicated.
For all those years, in Iowa, North Carolina, back to Iowa, then onto Texas, I went through peaks and valleys of depression. More and more, though, there’d be times that I’d simultaneously go, go, go and not want to get out of bed. Those were the worst. The times where I’d be so down, yet I’d still find a way to spend way more than I should on a whole bunch of crap I couldn’t rightly justify. I’d do everything and anything to feel better and hate myself for it in the end.
Finally, while living in Killeen, I was finally diagnosed as bipolar, and then the dance with medications began, interrupted by a few moves and two pregnancies. Then, finally, my doctors and I found a regimen that works well for me.
Sometimes, things don’t work as well as they should, like a few months when my stabilizer was suddenly turning me into a zombie. We switched that out for a different stabilizer and things are better than ever now.