Drugs? 

*I just wanted to make note that my dosage increased again today. I’m now at 150mg/day, which is split into 75mg twice a day. I take my meds at 8am and 8pm respectively.

What?? So 6 weeks ago I started on a new medication. A mood stabilizer called Lamotrigine, or Lamictal. I like to explain my mind by comparing it to football. I love sports, but I don’t like football lol. Anyway, I’ve been questioning my playing field. I’ve been certain of the players (BPD, as, like the players, the outcome of the game, my day, is determined by events, plays, skills, etc, and responses to them), but the playing field on which my days fold out, didn’t seem quite right. That, and I KNOW depression is a big ugly monster in my life, but now that I’ve eliminated the majority of my BPD triggers, that is, relationships and people in general (not all that healthy, but working on it), I’ve become hyper-aware of these sporadic, extremely elevated, high moods. My regular lows and highs aren’t triggered by anything, they just are. Again, speaking in relation to football, some days the sun is shining, other days it’s chilly out. Maybe it’s snowing, raining, nice and warm, light or dark. These element of a football game are simply there, and they have no great impact on the outcome of a game. Unless of course it’s especially muddy and chilly, then the players have a harder time employing the skills and plays that they can normally use on a “good” day. Get the comparison? The weather, the condition of the playing field on which the game is played? It just is, and is uncontrolled.

About 4 years ago, even before my BPD diagnosis, I’d found myself severely depressed after what was an extremely good mood the day before. I wondered out loud (on Facebook even if I remember correctly) if there was such a thing as a *bipolar spectrum*. These moods were definitely in stark contrast from each other, unprovoked, but I knew it didn’t fit the typical bipolar bill. I’d thought about it again from time to time over the last 4 years, never too seriously. Until recently. So I requested time with a psychiatrist at my town’s Mental Health facility that I am already hooked up with, and Bob’s your uncle. Lol OK not exactly. I don’t ever get to say that in context and it’s just fun to say. Anyway, so I started talking to a new (to me) psychiatrist and after a lengthy chat, we are trying a medication to see whether or not it makes a difference. I’ve taken antidepressants on and off the last 17 years or so. Different meds, varying dosages, and they’ve never made a lick of difference.

I’m the type of person who reads and researches the crap out of something if I don’t understand it, until I do. Or at least until it’s much more clear to me. I pick up buzzwords and explanations, which is often translated as “useless information”. I have a lot of that 😁 Upon investigating mood disorders, I’ve realized the distinction between bipolar and unipolar. Up to this point I’ve been treated as unipolar. That is, only depression. That makes sense since I’ve only ever talked about the depression. Why talk about the odd GOOD day that I have? Those aren’t the problem. In fact, on my “good” days I am extremely productive. I’m chatty and super social, I’m wildly positive and nothing and nobody can bring me down. Absolutely euphoric. There’s nothing remotely negative or self-destructive about it. I’ve come to learn that these short-lived, “good” or “high” days are called hypomania, or hypomanic episodes.

So it’s no wonder antidepressants have never worked for me. It’s not depression soley, it’s a MOOD disorder. Seems I’m somewhere on this bipolar spectrum.

I started the Lamotrigine (mood stabilizer) 6 weeks ago. It had to be started slowly because the side effects can be pretty vicious. It’s a bit frustrating because I want to see an improvement and I want to see it NOW! I can be a bit impatient at times heh. The first 2 weeks I was splitting a 25mg pill into 2. So 12.5mg twice a day. Then week 3 & 4 it was 25mg twice a day (50mg). Weeks 5 & 6 were 50mg twice a day (100mg). I’m just starting week 7 today and it’s now 75mg twice a day, or 150mg/day. This will be for the next 2 weeks, then week 9 I’ll be at 200mg/day. That’s 100mg twice a day. Apparently that’s where it tops out. Most people seem to notice a real difference between the 150mg and 200mg daily, and I’ve just reached the threshold of that. So far so good. The improvements so far have been really off and on, very back and forth, and I’ve attributed that to the fact it had to be started very slowly at a very low dose. I’ll try to remember to check back in over the next few weeks to see how things are unfolding 🙂 Does anybody even read these things? Probably not, I don’t share them anywhere anymore. I keep my brain tings to me. All too recently, people have proven why I DON’T TRUST ANYONE. Strangers are ok 😉 That’s it for now!

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