Tag: bipolar

Entry #21: Rambling Some Nonsense

I have no particular topic in mind but I feel like doing some writing in this blog. Well, ever since my diagnosis changed from bipolar disorder to schizophrenia, everything seems different. My feeling, my mood, my way of thinking and etc. Accepting that I’m have bipolar was really hard. The process took not days or weeks, but years. Just when I fully accepted that I have bipolar, it was all wrong. Hallucinations and delusions starting to make sense. I never thought that I have those two before, but after I freaked out while having hallucinations, I’m starting to read about it. 

Yup, bipolar does have hallucination if their having psychotic symptoms. That was what I thought I had until I read about delusional. I’m starting to connect the dots. Plus, how can it be mood disorder if the hallucinations and delusions started months before I’m started to have depression? It was weird. As I saw more videos explaining the negative symptoms of schizophrenia, it’s like someone hit me with a brick at my head. Duh! It all make sense. Not talking at all for months, no facial expression for months, isolation from people (when I was in pre-university, I stayed at an empty room at an empty block so I dont have to meet people), etc. I didnt talk for months, so my family was really concern and agree for me to have ECT. That and depression, of course.

It’s weird. Really weird. I was ready to be an advocate for bipolar disorder but it turns out to be a lie. I’m schizophrenic, and I dont have bipolar disorder. I idolized Boltzmann and Carrie Fisher because they had bipolar disorder too, but now, it’s all crumbled apart. Life never give me a break. I’m just a pawn or a toy to be play around with.



Entry #16: Sophie’s Choice

I know it’s have been awhile since I write anything here. I’ve been really really depressed for few months now, and after some times, your energy getting drain. For more than a week, getting out of bed is a challenge. There are some days I didn’t even remember to take my shower as I spend most of my time on my bed. It feels like you have been beat down repeatedly until you have no will power to get up anymore. However, I still force myself to get up. Now, even a short shower, I’m proud of what I have achived. People without this condition would not understand this, but I know, plenty of people with this disorder do.

The reason I feel like writing something today is because I had appointment with my psychiatrist this morning. I have seen a lot of psychiatrists over the years, and he’s my favourite. Before this, I requested that I want to use the Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) machine that is only available at another hospital at my city. Since he never had any experience with TMS, he said he need to do some research on it first. At the same time, I do some reading. It turns out, although TMS doesn’t cause memory loss, it also cause damage to brain’s cells. And to compare with ECT, ECT have higher success rate than TMS. A crappy ECT have higher chances to get better than TMS? Then TMS not so great then.

So, my doctor asked me if I still want to try TMS, but I said I don’t know since what I read wasn’t that great. He said he will make the arrangement if I want to use the machine, however the machine isn’t at the hospital, but at my old university. WTH the TMS machine doing at a university? I’m guessing it’s for some research purposes. In that case, sorry, I would have to say no. I want to get better, not to be a lab rat.

So, now I’m down with medications or ECT. He was quite suprised that I’m considering ECT again as he knows I’m against it. He asked me what makes me considering ECT again. I told him I couldn’t handle the pain anymore. Its been months of major depression and I’m running out of energy to keep on fighting. I’m starting to tearing up. I told him I don’t know what to do. If I go for more ECTs, I will suffer more memory loss and cognitive impairment. I maybe end up cannot continue my PhD study. If my memory won’t recover, there goes my career. All my dreams and my future will be shattered. On the other hand, I can continue experimenting with medications, which what I’ve been doing for the past few years. However, I’m having suicidal urges everyday. And I have almost no energy to keep on fighting. I’m too tired to go on. I may end up committing suicide.

These two choices are so ridiculous and unfair! I’m seriously tired of everything. I don’t think anything about this is fair. Some people may say “it’s a test from God”. Well, what will you do if you are in my shoes? Would you live a long unhappy life with regrets and shattered dreams (which may lead to suicide also), or a short life but doom to hell. Is all these fair to you? Plenty of people who want to live a long life but die at a young age, but I want to die now but I can’t. Is it fair? When someone lose a battle of physical illness, they will be prayed upon and everyone will say good things about them. However, if someone lose a battle of a mental illness, they are doom to hell and everyone will say bad things about them. No. It is not fair! We never asked for this illness. We never want to be this way. We are sick! And we are not faking it to get your intention.

Entry #14: When It All Start

I don’t really remember when it all began. All I know I was 14 at the time. Since my mum was busy with work that year, I volunteer to stay at my school’s hostel, so my parent won’t go all the trouble to send me to school everyday.

I think that is when it all begin. I saw “ghost” for several times. Yes, at that time I do believe that I saw ghosts. I don’t know whether it is ghosts or not, but now I think it is just my halucinations. The “ghosts” was very clear and vivid. That was my first symptoms that I noticed. Then, there was polydipsia and polyuria. Which means extreme thirst and frequent urinations. At first, it wasn’t obvious.

OK, I know that it is not the symptoms of bipolar disorder, but I didn’t know the symptoms back then. Yes, I’m starting to feel depressed at that time. I spend all my free time at a school mosque. Just sitting there while holding a prayers book. I believed that time that it will take away my sadness. All the things that happening to me (sadness, halucinations, polydipsia and polyuria) was only the devil’s works, so I thought. Due to all that, I decided to leave the hostel. I don’t want to live at the school’s hostel anymore. Due to that, I got plenty of backlash from almost everyone, which added more to my depression.

A week after I leave the hostel, my grandma was admitted into a hospital’s ICU because she was unresponsive. I was first heard the news when I came back from school. When my mother told me the news, I felt that my heart been ripped out from my body, then stabbed repeatedly. This was the woman who have been there for me for all my life. I’m  much more closer to her than my own parent. That afternoon, she went into an emergency surgery on her brain. 

Since then, my depression become more obvious. I cried myself to sleep everyday. I refused to go to school because I don’t feel like leaving my bed. No one understand what happening to me. Not my family, not my school. To them, I’m just a lazy teenager that is trying to get away from going to school everyday. I have few major nervous breakdown, and yet, nobody think there is something wrong with me. And, don’t get me started with the school’s counsellor. He called me for a counselling session. I just cried during the whole session and he just sit there watching me cry without doing anything.

It wasn’t until I was 22 or 23 that I know I have a mental illness. I never knew what mental illness was before that. Now, 10 years later, I have tried plenty of medications, and it seems like none suit me well. That is why the last resort was ECT. Although I have mental illness, I always been the brain in the family. However, I’m also always been the socially awkward one in the family. And now, I’m ugly obese mentally ill person who’s a burden to my family.
P/S: My psychotherapist suggested that I end my blog entry with a bipolar quote. So here goes nothing.

I know it’s not a positive quote, but I just love this quote. This is what I’m going thru for the pass few months.

Entry #10: ¬†ECT’s Adverse Effects

It’s been weeks since I did ECT and I’m still regretting it. I’m still having difficulties in memory, disorientation and still suicidal. After some advice from my nephew’s paediatrician, I went to see a neurologist to seek some advice just to make sure there is nothing wrong with my brain. Mostly, to comfort my family, who’s really worried about me.

The neurologist was a very nice and polite person. He did asked about my mental illness, my medical history and my medications that I’m currently on. He then did some physical testes. I think he noticed my disorientation. Then he did a memory test on me. It’s a standardised memory test I guess.

I managed to aced few questions (although he did gave me few hints, I still count that as a success). I can’t remember my own birthday, which is a huge blow for me. I always remember the birthdays of my family members and friends. Then he asked me whether I’m OK in math. Proudly I said, I’m good in applied math and I’m currently doing my PhD is in Mechanical Engineering. Then he asked me some simple arithmetic questions. I didn’t remember the exact questions but it’s something like 7 plus 6 and 100 minus 9. I was stunned. My tears started to fall. I can’t believe I dont know the answers. I used to able do multiplication or division a number up to 5-7 digits to a few digits number mentally. And yet, I can’t do arithmetic. I can’t stop crying. I’m broken. Math is my pride and joy. I love math more than I love myself. But, I have failed!!!

Only God knows what I felt at that moment. The doctor tried to console me. After the session, he said the memory will come back, but he doesn’t know when exactly. I need to rest more and do more enjoyable things so my brain will heal faster and I won’t be too depressed. If not, I may need another round of ECTs. 

I may take a longer leave of absent from my studies, but my supervisor will leave this country end of this year. I don’t have the luxury of time at this moment. I did express my concern to my supervisor last week, but he was extremely supportive. He said take as much time to heal as needed as health comes first. Once I’m OK, then my dream to be successful will come true. I’m blessed to have them as my PhD supervisor. And I’m blessed to have my family and friends. Only God can repay what they have done for me. If any of you are reading this, thank you!

Entry #4: Second ECT

This morning, I had my second ECT. This time, the recovery takes longer than the first ECT. 10 hours after the ECT, I’m still can’t remember things clearly and the massive headache are still there. I took a long nap, but it seems like the headache are here to stay.

Now, I’m tempted to stop this treatment. I have at least 4 more treatments to go, but I dont feel like it. Despite that, reading some comments on my Facebook’s post does make me feel better. I never met these people in person, but it’s like we know each other for a long time. If any of you reading this, THANK YOU!

I am thankful that my family and most of my friends support me throughout these tough process. To my friends from Swimburne University of Technology (Sarawak Campus), THANK YOU! Your prayers means a lot to me.

I have so many people to thanks. My supervisor, Prof Alexander Gorin, you are the best. To my psychiatrists, psychologist and counsellor, your help means a lot to me. I owe you my life.

To whom I forgot to mentioned here, THANK YOU! There are too many people to thank. You guys are the best!

I’m hoping to get better soon so I can get back to my normal life as a PhD candidate and make a contribution in scientific world. I hope so.