Well that was January! 

20 days ago I blogged about how January had started very well. The depression had lifted quickly and although I was walking on eggshells I was coping very well. Recently I had thought that my bipolar episodes were becoming much more seasonal but being this well in January has made me realise that doing all I can all year to stay well is vital as the bipolar doesn’t necessarily have a pattern to it.  January continued in this positive way!

Today as January became February I saw my GP and we reviewed my care and crisis plan as I  always do after a bad episode. For me it is important to look at what helps me, what doesn’t help, what can exacerbate my anxiety and after this episode it was important to document the support I had received from mental health services. This time the treatment was excellent and in case I am unable to communicate this in the future it is vital that this is documented somewhere.  For me having a long term mental illness is just like a physical illness and the monitoring of my condition is so important.

Even though I am not scheduled to see my GP until after Easter I know exactly what I need to do if things become difficult in anyway.

So January was great! On Saturday night I went out in London and travelled on half a dozen tubes, plus a London bus and it was such a good night. My anxiety was minimal and I enjoyed the whole evening.  There wasn’t one point that I felt I wasn’t up to it or that the bipolar was preventing me from enjoying myself to the full.  January ended with a birthday party to celebrate my niece’s 1st Birthday which is this week and it was a perfect end to a great month.

I am so thankful for this period of wellness and I am committed to do everything I can to stay as well as I can but always remembering as with many illnesses that it isn’t often in my control and bipolar can affect me when I least expect it and sometimes with no trigger. Remembering this is not my fault is something I will try and remember as even being as well as I do today that isn’t always an easy concept for me.

Let’s hope that February is just as good! 

A positive January … for once

January has historically been a very difficult month for me.  I know that I am not the only person who finds January hard – the dark mornings and evenings, the cold weather, the quiet after the Christmas rush and often having less money can be just a few factors that can contribute to increased anxiety, negative thinking and episodes of depression and other mental illness. 

January became all the more difficult for me when my Grandfather passed away five years ago on the 14th January. He had a huge positive influence in my life, he acted as a father figure, guide, confidant and friend and I still miss him terribly. 

This year for the first time in what seems like years I feel pretty together and relatively well in January.  After what seemed like an impossible 2 months the depression has lifted quite quickly and I feel stable and the anxiety that had seemed like it would never go has improved also.

I am doing everything I can to stay as well as I can, I am probably being over cautious and it does feel at times like I am walking on eggshells. I am avoiding triggers wherever possible – just last week I decided not to attend a funeral in case it acted as a trigger.  I am working very hard at work but having a proper break every day and eating well.  I am enforcing some rest into everyday – today this is having a bath whilst listening to the radio. All this positivity isn’t always easy but I am doing my best and hoping that it is enough to keep another episode at bay. 

I am enjoying things again, singing, meeting friends, planning travels, these are just some examples and yes being back in a routine helps with all these things.  I am so grateful for the support I have had whilst unwell but also for the support I have now, at this moment, when I need reminding that having the odd wobble doesn’t mean the start of a downhill spiral and I need a gentle nudge in the right direction to take some time out!

I am also eternally grateful for the support of my Grandpa, who helped me enormously during some of the most difficult times of my life. Rest in Peace, love always.