I was twenty six years old with the world at my finger tips. I had made it through obstacles and difficult times most of my life. However nothing had prepared me for the road I was going to travel on for the next two years. I was in the middle of 5th Avenue in Manhattan when I froze and had a debilitating panic attack. I was hit with tragedy and disappointment consistently for six months before my life as I knew it was shattered into a million little pieces. I was escorted into the emergency room. I couldn’t stop crying, the doom I felt was like a boulder on top of me. After going through my history with my doctor I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I was relieved to finally have an answer for my manic behavior for the past year always following with a debilitating depression. I thought I would take my medicine and be fine. I learned I had a long journey of medicine trials and disappointments. I felt ashamed because many people thought I should just snap out of it.
After going though what felt like a merry-go-round of the same doubtful emotions, I decided to have ECT to correct my rapid cycling. I was so scared but put on a brave face for my family. They were in agony watching their once vibrant daughter and sister become drained of herself, hollow inside. After the ECT my life slowly came back together and one by one each shattered piece began to fit again. The past two years were the darkest times of my life, they shadowed every dream and aspiration I had. With medicine and the correct treatment my dreams and aspirations are no longer shadowed by doubt. They are within arms reach and I will push my self to reach them and beyond.
Having a mental illness is difficult but not impossible. It has made me stronger, given me a multifaceted view of the world, and made me realize that I had already climbed the mountain any other obstacle is merely a hill. I want to help other people with mental illness. I have bipolar and always will. However I had mixed cyle/rapid cycling bipolar. Medication was not sticking I was fighting with everything I had. ECT was a savior for me but I am the one who had the bravery to do so. We are more in control than we give ourselves credit for. Inform yourself, take care of yourself and most important never ever give up on yourself. God gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. Best of luck to everyone of you. You are not alone never lose hope it will get better.