Thursday, February 23, 2012

This is my life.

I have reached breaking point.  There is only so many times I can ride the wave before I get totally and utterly exhausted.

Enough is enough.

I am drowning.

I need to walk away.  I need to think of myself.  I need to be stronger... for me.

Brett has been in a low for a few days now.  Same shit... different low.

I can't take it anymore.

I can't live like this anymore.

Something has to give.

I am sick of walking around scared to my wits ends that my husband will be the next one to jump off a bridge.  So I keep quiet.  I don't say anything to him.  I keep the peace.  I baby him out of his low.  I cradle him back to the surface.  But in the meantime, I am gasping for air.

I am exhausted.

I have put myself aside for too many years.  I have put on more weight than I would have EVER dreamed of, because I have not looked after myself.  I have acne from the stress of my life.  I look in the mirror and I am not happy with the girl who is looking back at me.

I am an empty shell.

My soul is being destroyed one Bipolar episode at a time.

I want out.

But I have no out.

I love this man more than anything in the whole entire world.

More.  Than.  Anything.

He tells me things will change.  He says he will make a conscious effort to change.  He gets angry at himself for "putting me through this".

But I have heard it all before.  He has promised it will be the last time before.

So, today, I am making the change.

Things will change... but I will change it.

Today.... today was MY wake up call.

Watch me change my life.

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  1. Danielle, I am hearing you. Although my hubby does not suffer from Bipolar, he's on meds for depression and the moods are quite scary.
    I get easily overwhelmed and frustrated too, and for a long time I just took everything to heart. In the end I realised that I can only do so much.
    There is support for you out there, get it in place now. Take some time out when you can. Write down what you feel to clear your mind. Enjoy your kids. And most of all know you're not alone. Big Cuds, Jac at Common Chaos Chronicle xox

    1. Thanks for replying Jac. I have been living with this for so long that I don't take it personally anymore. I have learnt to walk away. I need to walk away. But it gets lonely at times. I want my sidekick back... We work well as a team.


  2. Well done on saying it out loud so to speak. Very Brave! (hugs)

  3. Hang in there like a sloth on steroids baby! Falling into others' pot holes is tough, exhausting and bone busting. But only you can choose to climb back out and keep on walking. Good on you for sharing. It has to help. Dim xx

    1. Thanks for the giggle Dimity. "Sloth on Steroids". That is ME! Although I really don't like the sound of being a "sloth", do they wear lippy?

  4. Unfortunately, it seems as though that is the way when a loved one struggles with mental health problems - you end up sacrificing who you are, and putting your own needs aside in order to continually support your loved one, while you ride the wave of all the ups and downs year after year. My brother has been (and still is) the anchor in my sister-in-law's life. My sister-in-law has lived with Bipolar for most of her life. Since she came into our family, it has been a roller coaster ride for all of us, but in saying that, the person who has had to endure so much over the years is my brother. But through it all, no matter how bad things got (and they got bad), he was always there for her. I never really understood how hard it was for him until he broke down recently and cried "What about me? With everything I have to deal with, and battle through, does anyone really know what I go through every day? Who is here for me?". It upset me to realise that for all these years, each of us has put so much time, energy and concern into my sister-in-law, when all that time my poor brother has struggled with no support or counsel of his own. It's all well and good for the rest of us to help out when we're witness to an episode, but at the end of the day, when we go home to our 'peaceful' households and lives, my brother is left to deal with everything by himself. His life is constantly in turmoil, and so it seems is yours. The thing that you both have in common is your immense love and devotion to your partners. They are truly blessed to have people like you and my brother in their lives. It takes a rare person to endure all that you do, and still remain so in love, supportive and devoted to your partner. It may seem like small comfort, but always remember how special you are for all that you do. You are the one thing in your husband's life that he can truly depend on.

    1. Thanks Rhana. Your words have touched me. Your brother and I should go on a holiday together... we would have a kick arse time! x

    2. You guys deserve a holiday!!!! God knows, it would be awesome for you to have a break from it just to re-charge the batteries. I know, we should all start saving up for a girls' spa weekend somewhere!!!! I know a few mums who'd be keen for a wine/whinge/chill-out weekend!

  5. Biggest hugs Danielle - i hope you can find a way to be there for Brett and still honour your own needs (physical and emotional). I don't have bipolar but have battled depression and anxiety and still get low periods. It took a severe toll on my marriage and am grateful for my husband standing by me. I know how much of a toll it took on my husband though- and can only imagine the impact of bipolar on you. Good on you for drawing a line and putting yourself back on your priority list - you deserve it hon!

  6. Hi Danielle,
    My fiance has Bi-Polar as well.It is extemely difficult at time.I know exactly what you are going through.Having to do EVERYTHING by yourself while they are laid up in bed cause they dont even have the energy to get up. They sleep all day, going into my room when he is going through this, it just stinks of morning breath from the time he has been in a dark room sleeping. Trying to wake him and sit him up just to make sure he has something to eat or drink. I get tired and I have put on ALOT of weight myself. It sucks big time. I have recently started to put myself first for once also.Stopped smoking which helped alot, and went back to baking and making more homecooked meals rather then something quick and easy.Baking/cooking is my passion.It made me feel like me again doing it.I am also getting my hair done soon as it has been almost a year since I have been to a hairdresser. Just know you are not alone. We are out there, doing it day by day. Tiffany- from Surviving Four Kids! :)

  7. WOW Danielle, I think my fiancee and I both could of written this post. I suffer PND and Social Anxiety and my fiancee suffers from PTSD.

    Living with mental illness, and living with someone who has mental illness, are both the hardest struggles in someones life.

    It is great of you to support your hubby and realise when you need some you time.

    Hugs to you both and to your children.

  8. I have some understanding of that fear that you need support and help but don't want to ask too much of your husband in fear that asking one thing of them might just be too much for them to handle and cause more damage than good. So in the mean time you work yourself until you are a shell, devastated, empty, exhausted and needing help yourself. I met my husband in November of 2009. We married in June 2010 and I was pregnant with our little boy. The next year was a steady decline into an abyss. My husband was working as a Mental Health Support Worker and it began to take its toll. A month after we were married he began having heart palpatations and what we thought at the time was diabeties related health issues. We later learned that it was panic attacks and severe anxiety caused by his failing mental health. By the time my baby boy was born in February 2011 I had a husband who was on a knife edge. The following 3 months were hell as my husband who had desperately wanted our baby didn't bond with him, wouldn't do anything to help me care for our son and who spent our first wedding anniversary asleep while I cared for our newborn, drank a couple of glasses of the moet I had saved for this "happy" occasion and cried myself to sleep. Something had to give and I finally told him enough was enough and he needed help. Then came the slow "recovery" back to some form of normality. But of course that is a falsity anyway. Medication helped but I have a husband who I adore, who is the love of my life, but who stays home with our son full time (while on workcover) while I work part time to help support us. Who does only the necessities during the day while I work, come home, cook dinner, deal with Caleb and make sure that he is ok. Sometimes I want to get away. Sometimes I cry in the car so he doesn't know that I have had enough. Sometimes I want to scream and ask "when do I get to be cared for?" And then I pull myself back together and continue on because if I'm not ok then everything will fall apart.

    So I get it ... at least part of it ... and I wonder what the answer is! I am waiting to see where your journey takes you xxxxx

  9. I don't have any experience, and I dont know what it would be like. All
    I know is that even though we have never had the chance to meet (my bad for missing events) I am here for you. If you ever need anything, seek me out. I have two shoulders, and two ears; I'm sure I could lend any of those to you.

    Know that whatever you choose to do, you have people behind you supporting you from adar, that are closer than you realise when you need someone.

  10. Fairly well said and a great way to end!! With a new lease and outlook. Great realization!!
    I went through a journey 2-3 months ago when a good friend of mine stated she thought I would be the happiest person in the world because I used to love creation, capture the special moments and live life to a fullnes. Since then I decided that I wasn't going to allow my husbands state of happiness (or lack of) and his anxiety and his depression and his stuff to control how I feel and how I am and when/if I go out or not. Since then life has been easier for me to deal with, newfound happiness in my heart and a real genuine re-falling-in-love with life and all that it holds.

    Yeah, it's not always easy, it is lonely, and I do get overwhelmed with the complexities of life but it sure is an improvement to last few years. I know I'm blessed.

    I have support through my best friend/sister in law, mil takes kids often, few extra really special people that I see regularly and all that helps too.
    But it also means that I can support others in difficult times and that has its heart rewards also. I love helping others.

    Now, if I can shift the excess 20kg baby far I'll be just-about-all-set :)
    Remain blessed beautiful lady with 5 big reasons for a wonderful life (+1 Man)

  11. Oh Danielle, I hope you get the support you need. In fact demand it. Just because you're not the one with the illness doesn't mean you should be forgotten. Please remember that.

    You shouldn't have to shoulder this all on your own.

    Love & stuff
    Mrs M


I am a Mama of Five. A wife to one. I believe in documenting life using stories. I love telling you mine and would love to hear yours.

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