I haven’t written in awhile, and, truth be told, there’s not been a whole lot to say. I am, thankfully, adjusting well to my meds. I am no longer spending weeks at a time in the grips of depression; when it happens, it resolves quickly. It is also not usually that severe. Though some instances, for various reasons, are.
One such instance is something that really seems silly, but it illustrates quite well what living with a mood disorder is like. A great deal of my depression triggers over the last two years have been due to health issues that have come to light or that I have developed (hypertension, pneumonia, a cancer scare, and many more). One of the few things that still seemed to function correctly were my eyes. So, it came as quite a shock to me when I went in for what I assumed would be a routine eye exam (which I hadn’t had one in almost 20 years) and found out I had astigmatism and farsightedness. I am now wearing glasses. This triggered one of my more severe bouts of mini-depression that I have had since I got on a decent dose of my mood stabilizer. To say that pill has been a Godsend to me would be a massive understatement.
At my last doctor’s visit, I was quite happy to learn that she is ready to ween me off the antidepressant I have been taking for about 22 months. That’s progress!
As someone who has Bipolar II Disorder, my “normal” mood is generally somewhat down (my own description for this was melancholy) with very infrequent episodes of hypomania. And, as previously discussed, it is only recently that those came to light. I am just coming off the first episode of hypomanic symptoms in a couple of months. The most notable symptom is extreme irritability over the last few days. I have also had some difficulty concentrating and a few other minor symptoms; my driving has been a tad more aggressive the last few days. Thankfully, since my condition is rather well-controlled, it has not been bad.
In reality, this is probably what I can expect to continue to live with, though maybe less frequently as I continue to heal. And it is so nice to feel good, or at least not bad, most of the time.
It sounds like your bipolar is very similar to mine. I’ve been “under control” for a while, but the mood swings still occur, just not as severe. I wish you well.
Not much is said about hypomania being extreme irritability. People think mania and hypomania are elevated mood states. My hypomania is definitely on the irritated side like yours, and I’ve alienated loads of people and lost jobs when in the grip of hypomania. This is a good argument for mood stabilizers 😛 which I take religiously. I hate the person I become when I’m hypomanic.
Irritability is one of the moods I’ve discussed with my psychiatrist. And it is definitely one of the early signs.