Today, I was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder. My psychiatrist and eating disorder therapist both agree I have it. After running separate diagnostic tests, they both came to the same opinion.
At first I was overwhelmed with emotion. I couldn’t stop crying. My brain always goes the worst case scenario, and I couldn’t keep myself together. Luckily, I’ve made progress. A few years ago, I rarely reached out for help when I needed it. I told my four close friends I needed help in a group text and asked one of them to call please me. Within minutes, I was on the phone one of them. She reassured me and helped me get to a place where I could take the next steps I needed.
I’m going to list some other thing I never would have done years ago that I did today. I called my boss and told her I needed the rest of the day off. I went to Kaiser because I know they have a walk-in clinic. I called my grandparents and told them what happened and how I was feeling.
Each of those things helped me to feel better. When I called my boss, she was kind and understanding. She told me not to worry about a thing and take the time I needed. At Kaiser, I had a later appointment time with my eating disorder therapist. She did a test with me that also said I had bipolar disorder and talked with me about it which made me feel much more calm. My grandparents were loving, caring, and everything I could wish for in family at this time.
I picked up my new bipolar medication today and took them both before hopping on the train home. On my way home, I was thinking about some worry I had. I honestly can’t even remember what it was about now. And I thought to myself, “I can’t remember what I was thinking. That’s incredible.” Let me explain, my thoughts typically race at 100 miles a minute when I’m upset. It often feels impossible to focus on anything because these intrusive negative thoughts creep in no matter what I do. But in that moment, I realized my thoughts weren’t racing. I took that medication hours ago now, and my thoughts still aren’t racing. The medication worked.
I’m cautiously optimistic about this new diagnosis. It gives me hope, and sometimes I felt hopeless. Now I can focus on how to get better instead of trying to figure out what’s wrong with me.