Thursday, December 15, 2016

Night Shift Update

    Well, the night shift is working out pretty well.

    As soon as my beloved bipolar husband gets his first paycheck, we won't be in extreme poverty anymore.
    I'm pretty excited about that. Just in time for Christmas.

    There have been two other Christmases where we had oodles of money, but I don't remember either of them. ??
    It could be because when he had both those jobs, I never saw him.
    With the first one, he'd come home between 11pm-2am and go back to work at 6am.
    The second one, they'd actually put him up in a hotel every other week. I saw him on Wednesdays.

    The secret to night-shift success is a full sleep arsenal. A nice, bead-filled, cooling face mask, some ear plugs, and new sherpa sweatpants have kept him sleeping peacefully through the day time. The bright, loud daytime.

    He's been using his happy lamp when he wakes up from about noon to 8pm. I'm sure his wake-up times will normalize soon.

    I miss cuddling with him. Sleeping next to his warm body, snuggling against his shoulder blade and being wrapped in the smell of him.
    He misses me to.

    Knowing about each other's mental differences has really fortified our strong relationship.
    Before he knew about my Asperger's, some of my social interactions confused him.
    Before I knew about his bipolar, I had no idea that his bouts of crazy passion were manias, and that those are something to avoid.
    I feel though, that the parts of each other we rely on aren't related.

    I need him to help ground me. I need him to cook and I need him for the kisses.
    He needs me because I somehow keep him grounded. He needs me to find all the things he puts down and looses track of and he needs me for the kisses back!

    I love him so much that I don't see him as a separate entity.  I feel like he's part of me. Not in a romantic, cutesy way. I literally feel like he is a large part of how I manage to be alive. He's a part of my brain that only functions when he's around.

    It's nice, but it's weird.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Night Shift Day 1

   My beloved bipolar husband just got home from his first day of working night shifts again.
   I'll keep an eye on him today.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Night Shift

    My beloved bipolar husband got a night shift.

    Last time he had one, we didn't know about the bipolar. Since we weren't doing light therapy, he got very depressed. He trusts that he can work past it this time with his happy lamp.

    I think he'll do fine. :)

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Sleepless

    It might be time to break out the happy lamp.

    My beloved bipolar husband has been having a hard time sleeping lately. He says he's depressed. Poor guy.

    I'm concentrating hard on getting into copywriting and finishing my second novella at the moment.
    My blog has fallen through the cracks.

    I'd love to work on healthy eating and exercise next. As soon as I finish my novella and get my first copywriting gig, I'll move my priorities.

    It's amazing how much my mood affects my husband.

   I try my best to be a pleasant person who brings the much needed happiness to those around me, but I feel like the real me is a very gloomy, sad and grumpy bear.
    It's hard because he knows me too well. He reacts to the feelings I'm truly having.

    Yesterday, my coworker, who is 19 years younger than me, was complaining to my boss about some drama in the workplace.
    "And then there's sweet little Breezy." She said for both of us. "Who never has any drama."

    I felt quite happy about that. However, with my husband I can't "fake it til you make it." I have to rearrange myself.
    If I'm feeling negative, I have to look at the emotion I'm having, validate its existence, and then move past it so I can think of how to apply logic to the problem.
    It's really hard, I do admit. It's so nice to be able to do that though.


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Under the Radar

    My beloved bipolar husband told me yesterday that he'd been depressed for a few weeks now. I was shocked.
    Maybe he's gotten so good at handling himself and using coping techniques that I couldn't notice it. As his wife, though, it's distressing. I hope I know him well enough to know when something is up.

    The new baby has been screaming pretty non-stop while I've been at work. It's not surprising because, well, she's not yet 3 months old.
    He keeps saying he'll look for a new job so I can watch her in the day again, but he hasn't yet, That's also not surprising because being employed is honestly, frickin horrible!
    The baby, Lulu (age 3) and Icy (age 2) have all been taking turns waking up at night so chronic sleep deprivation probably plays a role in the crabbiness. I'm surprised the lack of sleep hasn't sent him into more manias, but he is so responsible.
    We've also just been having a hard time this week. Our car battery died and it's a funny one that lives under the back seat, so, it needed to be special ordered. We weren't able to grocery shop, so my husband has been using kitchen wizard spells to conjure food.

    As far as Americans go, we're awfully poor. However, as an American, I do appreciate what we have. If you really look at it, it it quite a lot, so, in spirit of November, I'm going to work on being greatful and happy!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

I've run out of words

    I started this blog four months ago, and I feel as though I'm just repeating myself now.

    Maybe living with bipolars is just this predictable, but it seems like the days are similar.

    Yesterday he cleaned the kitchen like crazy and let me play Sims 4 on his computer all day. It's been a nice break since my own computer has been dead for a long time now.
    Every year we go to the Day of the Dead parade we have here in Missoula, but with the car down right now, the girls and I missed it.
    Our friend and old roommate was in town so my beloved bipolar walked down and joined him at the parade. They seemed to have a good time.

    Our life is so normal.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Seems Good

    It's good when life's good!

    There was a challenging moment last night, since our car is broked and we have 4 kids, but we pushed past it and made more awesome memories.
    We had a great time with our little critters.

    Halloween is both my beloved bipolar's and my favorite holiday and someday, we'll have to go all out for it!
    I'm just so glad that we live how we do with what we have.
    I appreciate this man and all our babies

Monday, October 31, 2016

Late Last Night

    My beloved bipolar and I stayed up really late last night, trying to watch Jacob's Ladder. Lulu, our 3 yr old daughter woke up crying at around 2 am, so we had to switch to something more kid-friendly.

    The rest of the night we spent cuddling our little girl.

    I'll have to keep an eye out for them today.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Diet Crashes

    For two or three months, my beloved bipolar husband was on the keto diet.
   His dedication was truly impressive. He didn't even have any sweets on his birthday.

    He discovered that he is pork intolerant, and that broke the keto diet for him.

    I should have done the shopping that month, but I sent him, and since he had just crashed out of keto, he bought oodles of the things he'd been denied; carbs. Malt-O-Meal, muffins, bread and more bread! Oodles. And no vegetables.
    Well, tummy aches obviously ensued so he's wanting to go back on his diet.

    I like the low-bread, high-fat diets. I feel best when on them. Noodles specifically make me feel bogged down and sluggish, however, I do loves me some fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables tend to be higher in carbs as well.

    As an Aspie, I love routine and safe, stable predictability so to have two or three choices for meals would just make my day.
    Well, as long as it included my favourites:

  • Espresso with stevia and steamed milk or cream
  • mushrooms
  • bell peppers
  • ALL THE DAIRY! CHEEEEEEEEEEESE



Monday, October 24, 2016

Seems a bit Overwhelmed?

    I think my beloved bipolar husband needs a break.

    He's been a stay-at-home-mom for over a year now, and he does a fabulous job. He is so attentive and caring.
    The problem with being a stay-at-home-mom is that he don't get daily breaks. He works from before he wake up, listening in his sleep in case his shift starts early. That happens after his brain finally collapses from exhaustion.  It's hard to sleep deeply when you have babies to worry about at night.
    He gets no lunch break and he works tirelessly all day.

    We have a single set of grandparents we trust to babysit, and they are often busy. They watch the girls maybe once every two or three months.

    I think it might be time for a break again.

   

Friday, October 21, 2016

Support

    I feel bad sometimes that Aspies have so much support, while bipolars are a bit lacking.

    I'm not saying that I wish Aspies had less support. I am grateful every time I explain that the noise makes me nauseous and someone either asks me if I'm "on the spectrum" or nod understandingly when I tell explain that I am on the spectrum.
    As a child I hid a lot stimming because when people asked why I flapped my hands, I honestly didn't know. I learned quickly that there is awkward stimming, and horrifying stimming. I stopped holding up my eyelids and scratching my forearms around people.
    But, luckily, help is relatively easy to find for me now. When I look around for help in school for my Aspie daughter, I have to look around, but it's there. When I look around for help for my bipolar daughter, most people and places seem to just wish I wouldn't. They seem displeased with the idea of being around bipolars until they meet my adorable, sweet little girl and my charismatic, professional husband. Then they don't believe that they both are bipolar.

    I guess it's because I love my family so much that it really annoys me that when I say I'm Aspie, people are alright giving me a bit of leeway, but that it's not something they'd do for my loved ones.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Babysitters

    I wish I could find a babysitter, because I miss my husband.

    Our littlest baby is 2 months old now and, as expected, we haven't had time to ourselves.

    I'd love to chat with him over coffee in the morning.
    I'd love to chat with him over dinner in the evening.
    I'd love to have friends over and drink wine and enjoy some blue cheese.
    I'd love to go out with him.
    I'd love to cuddle up and watch a movie with him. Go eat with him at a restaurant, go play laser tag together, just be alone with him for a few hours.

    I know most of these things will come back after our little one is about 6 months old, however, some of them won't.
    We don't drink when our babies are in the house, no, not even wine.

   
    My mother-in-law watched them one night, and it was magical. We cleaned, like we always do in the morning, and it stayed that way ALL DAY!
    It was like a mythical phenomenon.

    We were able to relax, thinking that our babies were in good hands. We had wine, and it was such a much, much, needed breath of fresh air.

    After we learned how many parenting differences we do have with her, though, that'll never happen again.

    I fear that we could never just get a babysitter.
    With our tiny bipolar girl and our aspie girl, we'd need a trained professional to watch our girls while we were out.
    That's not to say we couldn't train someone, we could, but it'd take a few sessions with us there, and a lot more money than I have right now.
    Some day.
   

Monday, October 17, 2016

Little Girl

I've been worried about my little girl joining the school system.

    Like her daddy, she displays obvious bipolar tendencies.

    I happen to know that that little girl is the sweetest.
    She's an animal-loving socialite with a huge vocabulary and a deep desire to help with the baby.

    All of my daughters are sweet, but she just might be the sweetest. My oldest gets crabby and intolerant of her pile of baby sisters. Icy has a strong passion for mischief and will taunt people, and the baby, well, she's a baby so she'll scream until you figure out the exact perfect temperature she wants her bottle.
    My Lulu, however, is always friendly. I don't think I've ever seen her tire of being around any of her family. She has a deep concern for all the insects, including spiders and we have to "rescue" them for her.
    She's just the sweetest.

    So, when she gets rambunctious and physically cannot stop, she needs someone who cares about her to gently help her take deep breaths and calm down.
    When she can't see the danger of climbing on things, or can't stop herself from repetitively kissing her sister, she needs someone to help her who'll be as sweet to her as she is to the rest of the world.

    However, seeing how the school never noticed that my oldest doesn't have any friends at school, and never told me after she'd been kicked in the face, I'm expecting that if I still can't afford private school for sweet little Lulu, her life in public school would be riddled calls home. I imagine many teachers labeling her as "disruptive" and having "a short attention span." And I can't.
    I can't let my sweetest little girl get labeled like that. She'll internalize it so fast since she's so sensitive to people. I can't let her become vilified for her adorable brain.

    Unlike Aspies, which are becoming socially acceptable, bipolars are still regarded as dangerous and somehow unworthy of the extra effort they'd spare for an Aspie.

    Having such a little girl with a disorder people don't even begin to diagnose until teen years is hard because people don't see it. They just see a hyper little toddler and I'm sure they'd react with punishment when she needs cuddles.

    I guess this is why I'm working so hard to gather money.
    I need my sweet girl to get into a tolerant school.

    That's not going to be public school so I guess I'm going to have to make enough money to send her to private school.

Friday, October 14, 2016

What Bipolar is Not, Plus Bugs!

  I apologize for the strange, unreadable highlighting on this post earlier.

  My beloved bipolar husband and I were in the kitchen talking yesterday about psychology, evolution and both of our mental disorders and we realized that most people have a distorted view of bipolar.

   It seems like people think bipolars are either depressed, violent or histrionic, (overly melodramatic).

    Yes, bipolars are occasionally depressed, perhaps more often than they're manic because it seems like doctors are far more concerned with controlling manias than helping bipolars out of depression. I suppose, unless it's gotten to the point of suicide.

    Are bipolars violent? Well, if a violent person has bipolar, then yes, but that's comparable to saying people are violent when they're drunk. If the drunk person is a violent person, yes they might be violent when they're drunk, but most people I've met are NOT violent. Therefore, most people I've met are not violent when they are drunk. Most bipolars I've met are not violent. Actually, considering I've only ever met one bipolar who was inclined toward violence,
I've met a lot more people WITHOUT bipolar that were violent. 

    Histronic. Your word of the day. My family is unfortunately absolutely riddled with histronic people. It's awful and extremely unpleasant.
    They are terribly unpleasant to be around. I don't share any information I don't need to because anything you tell them becomes drama fuel. If you don't tell them things, they make up their own ideas and use THAT for drama fuel.
    As an Aspie that likes the truth, growing up in a predominantly histronic family was terrible.
    I don't go to family events anymore and if I did get the chance to move out of state, I would without regret.
    My husband is not histronic. We both hate drama and prize simplicity and honesty when it comes to human interactions. It's one of the many reasons I love him so very much.
    One of my great aunts, who was also bipolar, was histronic, and yes, her bipolar manias really drew that out of her, however, that was a piece of her core personality, it was not caused by bipolar itself.


    I think the worst part about this strongly held misconception is that people in the medical field seem to think this way to.
    The MacArthur Violence Risk Assessment  a nicely thorough study of violence's relationship to mental disorder found "A diagnisis of a major mental disorder -- especially a diagnosis of schizophrenia -- was associated with a lower rate of violence than a diagnosis of a personality or adjustment disorder."

    Despite this, when my husband was diagnosed, they seemed very concerned that he was going to hurt someone while he was manic, despite the fact that he'd gone through 27 years of non-violence, wandering through life all undiagnosed and unmedicated.
    I'm not going to say he wouldn't hurt a fly, because the idea that flies get their poop hands all over his food drives him nuts, however, while we were at the children's museum the other day, we found a cricket.
    A poor little thing on the top floor where there is no plants, or anything aside from cars.
    Starvation, being squished, or freezing to death over the winter were the options for this little guy's fate had he stayed where we found him.

    My bipolar husband gingerly picked him up and we took him home so he can live out the rest of his life in our warm house, being spoiled with oatmeal and fruit pieces.






Our new pet for the next few months

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Stimming?

   Well, I learned something new today!

    I learned that normal people stim!

    According to Wiki, stimming is "Self-stimulatory behavior, also known as stimming[1] and self-stimulation,[2] is the repetition of physical movements, sounds, or repetitive movement of objects common in individuals with developmental disabilities, but most prevalent in people with autistic spectrum disorders.[2][3]"


    I often stim by "flapping" my hand, or shaking any object I'm holding. It's quite comparable to twitching and is a great tell that I'm uncomfortable.
    When my beloved bipolar gets stressed, or when he's talking about something that makes him uncomfortable, he does a crab-like finger crawl thing without noticing.
    I brought it to his attention and he was saying that it used to be a lot worse, and he's gotten it down to just his pinkie finger.
   It looks like most of his fingers to me.

    I guess it's nice to know that other people do these things to.

   Yes, it is MUCH more obvious when I do them, but when he does his crab-finger crawl, I feel so much better knowing that someone I look up to so much relies on the same type of stress relief that I do.


 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Saving my fish

    Sometimes, it's pretty easy to see the love in my life.

    My beloved bipolar and I managed to crawl into bed around midnight.
    It was a hard night getting all the girls to sleep.

    Yesterday, while feeding Jesse, our goldfish, my daughter mentions he has an owie on his tail, and then I realize that our fish has a bacterial infection in his tail, and the heater in his tank wasn't keeping him warm enough.
    I mentioned getting a new one, and my beloved bipolar said he doubted that we had the funds to get a new one.

    I've read too many stories about pets and babies who've fought for their lives and it seems that there is a common thread through both those that make it and those that don't.

    The ones that make it have families that tell them to fight, those who explain what in life is worth fighting for.
    Those that don't make it have families who "let them go," who tell them that they don't have to fight anymore, so I sat next to him and stroked the tank, showing him my finger tips. He's hand fed every morning so he associates fingertips with positive thing. I was trying to remind him how much he loves to eat, and trying to make him feel loved by reminding him that we feed him every morning.
    As he barely gulped each breath, he stared at my fingers, and he stared into my eyes, and it seemed like he stared sadly into my soul.

    One thing to mention is that we had run out of his dried krill treats, so he was feeling quite sad. He'd been asking for food all day, dancing at people and following fingers, and each time we gave him a sprinkle of pellets, he got more and more crestfallen. Bit by bit his will to live chipped away as he felt more and more rejected.
    It was horrible to run out of fishy treats in his time of need.

    Well, when we did manage to crawl in bed, I couldn't sleep.
    Usually, I fall asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow, so to have me next to him, staring in the darkness and unable to sleep really disturbed my beloved bipolar.

    So at 1 am, despite our very limited funds, I set off to Walmart for a midnight fish heater retrieval mission.  And more fishy treats

 

    Today, despite his very sore looking, very red tail, he's happy and swimming around like normal.







Monday, October 10, 2016

Disaster Averted!

    I'm so incredibly proud of how well my beloved bipolar husband takes care of his bipolar.

    With teeny tiny kiddos around, (namely, our 2 year old who wakes up demanding, unlike our 2 month old baby, who sleeps angelically through the night) it does make sense that their daddy isn't getting enough sleep lately.

    One morning, while we were having coffee together, he told me he was having a bad mania. He explained how his brain felt it had a rubber band around, and he warned that I might see the worst depression he'd had since before we met.
    So, I braced myself, preparing to run him a thousand bubble baths with salts and readied to dole out a ton of hugs.  I got some milk to steam for his coffee and I was set to spoil the crap out of him.

    The day came where he moped around, commenting on how his life is too wonderful to be feeling the way he was feeling, and then, the next day, it stopped. It Stopped!
    After possibly the biggest mania I've seen from him, he only had a day and half of depression!

    I don't know if it's all the brain training we've done to improve our base level of happiness, or the fact that our lives actually are filled to the brim with love, I've never worried about my beloved bipolar. I'm secure in knowing that in a depression he's never suicidal or self-harmy. He's not even usually sad in his depressions. It's usually just a lack of motivation, a desire to hide himself in video games, more like a physical depression where his body doesn't want to move, like after overexerting yourself.
    Is mania is like emotionally overexerting yourself? Seems logical to me.

   I've seen quite a few other bipolars and I've seen them randomly fight with people. I've seen some that would make me nervous, those who just might be dangerous. Those that might fall into a suicidal depression or hurt someone, or burn something, but out of all the bipolars I've met, including those that aren't diagnosed and therefore aren't on any prescriptions but display obvious bipolar traits, I haven't met very many that are dangerous.
    The few that I have seen that do worry me had reasons. Yes, they were inclined to hurt people, but they were inclined to hurt specific people who continually hurt them on a regular basis. It's like the inhibitor that keeps us from performing revenge in our modern society is dampened. It's not gone, even in the worst I've seen, it's just not nearly as strong as other people I've seen it in.
    It just makes me really value how important it is to be nice to everyone.  

    "Be excellent to each other"
               -Bill S. Preston, Esq

Friday, October 7, 2016

Depression

    Well, my beloved bipolar told me yesterday he was in a depression.
    Due to the mad amount of maniac, he was expecting a hard fall, but I think his deep love of "family" kept him from sinking into the depths of depression. I've never seen him fall that far.

    He's mopey.
    He's withdrawn.
    He's sad and he's obviously needing cuddle-hugs, but he's never up for self-harm. Never. I've never seen him worse than just being, exceptionally down.

   Deep in his depression, he was talking to me as I folded laundry. His youngest baby warmly nestled on his shoulder.
    "I really don't have a reason to be sad." He ranted at himself. "You guys are wonderful."

    As he continued to sadly gush about his adorable pile of daughters, and me, and our relationship, I couldn't help but fill to the brim with loving pride.
    Even though we are currently very poor, every day is a magical blessing with him, with his kiddos, in this life of mine.

    As I sit here at 4 am because my little girl woke herself up with bad dreams in the night I blink my sleepy eyes, I'm hurting from sleeping all funny on my neck because I had a baby on my chest who needed the cuddles. Despite all this, I can't help but just feel so lucky and grateful to be living my own life.

    My beloved bipolar husband and I both had pretty rough childhoods. Both of us had sleepless nights, danger and judgement. Childhood was hard and unpleasant. Every year of it, but living through each year of degradation and misunderstanding and betrayal is worth every year of pure, delicious, unaltered joy I feel every day now.
   
    My beloved bipolar's laugh is a rare thing, but whenever I hear it, the rest of my day is wonderful. I physically cannot get upset after he's laughed. It's an amazing magic skill of his.
    Making my little girls smile is also so amazing.
    The waves of warm accomplishment I feel, knowing that I'm making their little lives as good as I can, is possibly the most rewarding feeling I've ever had.


    Some people resent their kids, their spouses or their lives. Find a new situation, because somewhere, this waits for you.
    Somewhere there is a perfect life for you, with perfect people. You have to find them, and after you do, you have to appreciate the good.
   There will be sacrifice, but if you've found your perfect place, the good will be so overwhelming, the sacrifices pale in comparison.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Communication?

    As an Aspie, I have a really hard time with people. I take everything personally and often I literally cannot speak. The speaking part of my brain will shut off and, unless I've thought about responses, I will stumble to find words like a pre-teen confronted by their crush.


    In two months, my husband will have been a stay-at-home-dad for two years now, so by now, he's very used to my factual, Aspie way of talking.
    It's so awesome to have someone understand how Aspie's works. Someone who knows I don't understand small talk. Someone who won't ask for my opinion, unless they are prepared for my honest answer. He likes talking to me. This is good, because we're married. This is also bad because, for the past two years, I'm the adult he's talked the most to, and now that he's attempting to reassimilate into the adult, human world, he has no patience for small talk. He can't stand when people ask him for his opinion when really they want reassurance, and he can't stand the dishonesty of others.

    Mild dishonesty seems to be a staple of other's conversations.
    People tend to quote things they've seen like facts that they haven't fact checked and that bothers both my beloved bipolar husband and me. I do fact check, so if I bring up the facts, those people shy away.
    I really don't know why they say those things. They usually don't want to debate. The "facts" they present are often unrelated to the rest of the conversation, so it's not to extrapolate on the conversation, and lastly, they are often wrong, so I cannot believe that they use them to feel smart.
    I suspect feeling smart is pro'ly closest to their goals, but it's so wrong!

    Anyway, my beloved bipolar husband went off to play with other adults and came back a bit crestfallen.
    He went with his best friend, who is also quite Aspie, and while there, he found himself stuck in uncomfortable small talk. Even though there were others there that he knew, he found another Aspie and spent the night around the Aspies there.

    Now, he mentioned he wants a job so he can, you know, stop being so lonely, but if he's not comfortable talking to non-Aspies, making connections will be pretty hard.

    In my super social job, I see one Aspie adult to about every ten non-Aspies.
    The new friend forecast is spotty.

    I almost feel like I broke his ability to have "normal people conversations." :/

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Amazing

    So, there was a post on my beloved bipolar husband's facebook that really, really bothered him.

    It bothered him before we went to bed, and it followed him all the way into today. Even now he's not quite recovered.
    He felt wronged by the fact that not many people sympathize with those with Aspergers or Autism. Those like me and his stepdaughter.

    Usually, when he responds to things that he disagrees with, he looks up the facts and presents a very professional, well thought out college-style lecture, but this time . . .
                                                                                                              this time his responses were thick with anger and steeped with loving protectiveness. It was breathtaking. Each sentence was heavy, and each one oozed with passion.
     It was so emotional that I, as an Aspie, had a hard time proof-reading it for him.



    I don't know if you've ever had the opportunity where your mate steps up like that for you or yours, but it's an amazing feeling.

    As an Aspie, that absolute human-ness is very hard for me to achieve, and while it's devastating to me to see so many people intolerant and ignorant of what bipolar is, I don't think I could ever express my feelings so organically.

    I hope that the consistency with which I'm blogging feels similar because this is my way of letting the world know how absolutely beautiful and wonderful bipolars can be.

    Mine's pretty great.

Monday, October 3, 2016

I really didn't realize

    My beloved bipolar husband was doing some video hypnosis courses that we have, which is fine. He decided to watch one, one-hour video a day. That was also a pretty normal-person thing to do. A nice goal. Then he decided he was simultaneously going to do some charisma courses and I got worried he was on the edge of a mania.

    I gently mentioned that he should slow down and that I could see the beginning of a mania emerging, and it seemed like things slowed down.
    However, he told me yesterday that he's in a depression.

    Looking back, I can it now. I can see exactly when it switched, but at the time, I didn't realize at all! I feel so bad!

   

    He was so excited because one of our very favorite hypnotists was web-hosting a seminar where he was planning on having a Q&A at the end!
    This was possibly going to be the first time we'd be able to actually interact with him and we were both SO EXCITED!
    With a nudge, this man could be someone who's known for a very long time in history as someone who made great advancements in hypnosis. He is one of my personal idols.

    His material isn't cheap, but it's often worth its price. Every time we hear about a new product we think about how we could budget to make it fit, and every time we hear about an event he's holding, my beloved bipolar and I are never able to save the funds in time, so we mark the day with moments of silence and significant, sad glances at each other.
    Someday," we keep thinking, "Someday we'll have used the knowledge we've grown from his stuff to build up a business and then, then we'll have enough money to go see him in person. Then, we'll be able to talk to him."

    I figured no one interested in his Q&A would have sticker shock if they'd looked at, and enjoyed any of his products, so when his pitch took FOUR HOURS, I was absolutely shocked.

    That day, my beloved bipolar went from manically excited to depressed within those four hours.

   The drain is obvious now. His energy faded from the kind that a kid has after you hand the cashier the money, in those seconds when they hand them the candy back, to that of a jilted, sad hermit, living on the fringe of society because he feels unloved and shunned.
   
    He instantly dropped all of his hypnosis videos, the charisma lessons and the desire to talk to his friends.


    And, he's been playing video games.

    I should have known. He always uses video games to recharge when he's depressed, or when he's had too much people.
   


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Relief

So, yesterday my husband headed out to sell his blood. Well, it's technically "donating plasma" and they pay you for time, but that's not the way I see it.

    He was denied. They required a note from his doctor saying he's mentally fit to donate.

mmmmkay?

   I am terribly confused, shocked and a bit angry on his behalf that something like bipolar could bar someone from donating plasma, but I do have to say I'm awfully relieved.
    I've done a good job of ABSOLUTELY STAYING OUT OF IT.

    I figured it was totally his deal and I avoided talking about it or reminding him at all. He remembered on his own so I figured he actually wanted to. . . Until he was just about headed out the door.

    "Are you sure you want to?" The words slipped out of my mouth and I winced at my lack of self-control.

    "No," he stated flatly, "but we need the money."

    And my heart sank. My nausea was justified and I felt awful.

    I don't want to be at that point where the man who my life revolves around feels like he has to sell his blood for us to survive.

    So, I applied for a second job. *sigh*

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Aspie Anger

As an aspie, I often feel like John from the Watchmen.

    Unlike the average bear, which are born with communication instincts, I have to constantly learn things, like how to change your voice when you're happy, and how to shriek when scared.
    The people in my life often don't know how I'm feeling.

    Except, my beloved bipolar husband. He knows how I'm feeling.

   Yesterday, after I washed off the stove, swept the floor, washed the couch cushion covers and the throw blanket I didn't have time to finish the dishes. I took the girls to the carousel to allow him a breather from his full-time job as a Stay-At-Home-Dad.

   That evening, while getting the girls down for bedtime, I did need him, but I avoided asking him for much.

    After this fun, but exhausting day, he complains that the dishes he needs to cook with are dirty.

    I felt terribly angry and unappreciated, so I called him "Mr. Complainy Pants." Anyone else would have thought that was cute and pretty much ignored it.

    He knew though. He knew it was my extreme emotions popping out, so he apologized with donuts because he is the sweetest person I know.

Monday, September 26, 2016

I Love the Lulls

I love when there is nothing to report.

It's so nice to have normal time.
I'm planning on taking the Tiny Girl Pile to the children's museum today while our big girl is at school, so I'll have to keep an eye out for little Bubbles getting over excited, but it seems like we're gearing up for a pretty normal week!

Friday, September 23, 2016

The Edge of Mania

    My beloved bipolar husband revealed that two things can spark his "crazy."
    Money and Flies!

    Well, sleep has been so-so. It seems like we've been getting a good 5 or 6 hours a night, which I appreciate greatly.
     We're developing a game where we see who can make the most money starting off with a $20 budget and I think the amount of thinking and research he's doing towards this goal might be the edge of a mania.

    For those of you interested, the clues that he's tip toeing on the pool edge is that he stays up as late as he can gorging on information. He literally can't get enough.
    The whole day, while he's buried deep in research, his eyes are glassy and bright, like a kid who was just handed a big gift box wrapped in pretty paper.
    There is mild hesitation when I ask him to do things. I have to ask him a few times, but when he's full manic, he won't respond at all when I ask him to do things.



    My beloved bipolar keeps a good handle on his mind, so I'm not concerned so far. I trust him quite a lot.


  See ya next week ;)

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Lost Track

    It's been seven weeks now, one week shy of two months, since I've started blogging about living with my beloved bipolar. I feel like some days, I get so caught up on what I should share, that I've forgotten that I just wanted to show people how normal it is to live with, and be in love with, someone with bipolar.

    I wanted to show people how normal our lives are despite his bipolar, or even because of his bipolar.
   I will say that parts of our lives are extraordinary, and people have looked at us with jealousy, however, we have coffee when we wake up. I go to work. We eat scrambled eggs and sometimes forget to brush our teeth. We get tired and cranky. Sometimes we workout, sometimes we go months without working out. We get rained on.

    Life is normal. It has both good and bad parts and everyone has a choice to surround themselves with as much good as they can. You also have the choice to see more good around you. I adore my husband, so I see the good in him every day, and as you think of someone you adore, you'll find it's so easy see the pleasant things in your own life. It's easy to feel happy when every day, you can go out and see at least one thing that makes you happy. A person, a pet, a piece of jewelry even, can make you feel a glowing happiness. Something so simple can make you feel like life is worthwhile. It can make you glow inside. It can even make you feel glad to be alive, because there are all these tiny fragments of happiness floating around you all the time. You might not have even realized that you have collected them around you, quite possibly to remind you to be happy.

    I find happiness frequently in this life I've built around myself and I bet, if you look around, you can see something that makes you happy, today, to.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

In Other News: Aspie News

    I've always thought that my beloved bipolar husband was just incredibly accepting of the challenges I face everyday, all the time, but he said something the other day that makes me feel like, maybe he just really doesn't see it.

    He often says I'm stressed too much, and I am. Sometimes he takes it personally and he shouldn't.

    I can imagine how frustrating it must be to see someone you love so much never being quite as happy as you'd like your life with them to make them.
    I do tend to always have something to complain about. Life isn't where I want it to be. I've failed at my life goals repeatedly for a few years in a row and as an Aspie, I have to say that it is just thoroughly devastating.
   I've wanted to own my own house, on acreage, with chickens since I was 12. I'm almost 30 now and it breaks my heart when my girls can't play soccer in our yard because it's too small.

    But really, the reason I'm so crabby is the over stimulation, ALL THE TIME. It's hard to handle the feeling of clothing.
    As a kid did you ever get shoved in something that was just a little bit too tight? Not to the cutting off circulation point, just where the arm holes are uncomfortably snug and the bottom pulls up when you lift your arms and the part across the chest is a bit too tight?
   I'm not a huge person. If I weren't an Aspie, I'd wear a medium, but since I am, I am only comfortable in XL or bigger. I like to swim in my clothes so they don't touch me much.
    I don't "tune sounds out" like other people can. I'm so very, very jealous of that skill. I hear refrigerator, all the time. Occasionally it shuts off and then I hear the lack of something that should be there, which makes me uncomfortable because then I'm subconsciously thinking about what's broken, and my hair. I will admit, I don't feel every hair I have, but I feel a lot of them. I shave the back of my neck because those tiny hairs feel like a collection of needles, constantly point-in in my neck and any light touch swirls those points around in my flesh. Around my hairline, especially on my temples, those hairs aren't painful so much as invasive, almost like an itchy scab. I've shaved twice in my life. Ran around bald for as long as I could stand the backlash. As an "attractive" white girl, it's not socially acceptable to be bald on purpose, especially while wearing a 5XL coco puff t shirt.

   Well it was my hair that tipped me off. He happens to like Power Hair! So I've been trying to master the Power Ponytail. It takes more hair product than I normally use, which is fine, however the smell of the gel I used gave me a headache to the nauseous point.

    So I'm headed off to the shower to wash it out and he recommends using cocoa paste in stead. When I told him that the cocoa paste wouldn't make my head stop aching he was confused,

    "But it smells like delicious chocolate," he retorted in confusion.

    "Yes it does, and it would give me a headache," I stated, in the blunt factual way I state truths. I'm sure none of the emotions swirling around me showed, I'm sure I looked relatively "Poker faced" as my perceptions of his acceptance crumbled and curled around me like a choking mental smoke.


    I no longer have any notion of what he knows about how I perceive things, but he's so supportive and sweet that it doesn't change anything other than my own mind.
    Even if he doesn't know why I need to shower, he watches the kiddos and allows me time to decompress.
    Even if he doesn't know why I sometimes can't bring myself out of my baggy clothes, he never complains about it. He still calls me sexy, even when I loaf around in jamie pants.

    Even if he can't comprehend my situation, he's always there to support me and love me.

    I hope everyone has someone in their lives who is as wonderful as my beloved bipolar is.


Monday, September 19, 2016

How much I Love My Beloved Bipolar

    My husband has had two jobs where he was making $2000 more a month than we are now.

    During the first one, we saw him on weekends, and on Wednesdays.
    It was so devastating to our little girl, who was about two at the time, she broke down when she said bye-bye. It wasn't normal little girl "parent going to work" crying, it was "abandonment issues in the making crying." So, he left that job for the second one to spend more time with us. Specifically, to spend more time with her.
    Well, that didn't work out well either because they'd put him up in a hotel every other week, and send him hours away on the other weeks.
   He was too far away when I had our third daughter and he missed her birth because of that job. It's not something he'll ever, ever get over.

    Jobs are never more important than the beloved people in your life.

    So now we live paycheck-to-paycheck, never eating out and never going out to movies or camping. Saving up for back-to-school was incredibly difficult, but it's worth ever lack of penny.

   According to math, I love him enough to pay $2000/month at keep him home with us.

   If you are bipolar, don't let anyone say you're not lovable.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

I can't argue

    When my beloved bipolar goes manic, he tends to pick really awesome stuff to be passionate about.

    He'll come up with these amazing ideas that are really hard to resist and it's really hard for me to tell him to take it slow because I get just as wrapped up in his idea.
    You want to start working out and get super sexy? Absolutely not!
    You want to open a food truck, make at least double, probably triple what I'm making with the job I dislike and fulfil my dream of having a business? Whoa there Buddy! Simmer down.

    It's hard to get him to see things when he's manic, not because he's oblivious to reason, but because he presents such factual truths that I literally cannot argue. There is no logical argument against what he says.

   The only thing is that he floats away from me.

   He digs himself so deeply in his projects that he stops helping me clean. He only cooks when I ask him to and resents anything he does need to do.

   I'm going to ask him to come back to me.
    Wish me luck

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Finding your Why

    My husband came out of somewhere a few days ago and told me, in not so many words, that he had rediscovered his why.

    I was first introduced to the concept to finding your why in The Toilet Paper Entreprenuer by Mike Michalwicz, an adorable father who is very pleasant to talk to. 

    I believe knowing your why is very important to all humans persons.
    If you know why you feel like you exist, it's easier to work toward that goal. It's also easier to see opportunities where that goal is achievable.

    Here's how to find your why.
    Take a goal you want to achieve and ask yourself, "why?"
     Keep asking yourself "why" until you can no longer find an answer.
    My example:
       "I want MONEY!"
   -"Why?"
       "So I can buy groceries when I need to and a house to live in with land for some cows and chickens!"
  -"Why?"
        "So I can be self-sufficient!"
  -"Why?"
       "So I don't have to rely on anyone to live the life I want!"
   -"Why?"
       "So I can feel safe."
   -"Why?"
       "So I can build myself up to person I can be!"
 -"Why?"
      "So I can help people!"
-"Why?"
     . . . "So. . . people can be helped? So I can feel helpful? Because I want to help people?"
-"Why?"
    "Because I want to help people?"

This is my Why. If all I do in my lifetime is help people, I'll have lived a fulfilled life.
    I desire to help people more than anything.


I think everyone should find their why, especially bipolars. 
    I've seen that bipolars tend to be inclined to research, so when they research self-improvement, their manias can make them saner.
   Work on yourself! It's good.
 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

I miss coffee

    When you're poor, you often long for money, but really, you want something that you want to buy with that money.


    I miss coffee, but really, I miss my husband.


    With a teeny tiny in the house comes sleep deprivation and when that happens, I fall asleep while cuddling my beloved bipolar at night while watching movies.
    I miss the warm, delicious steamed milk, but what I miss more the ability to stay awake and be intimate with my husband. I miss cuddling and kissing him. I miss talking to him until 2am.

    I've begun working out to boost my energy levels because even sans coffee, I still need my husband time!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Fall Is Coming!

    It smells crisp out. No longer do we have to fight against the heat! No more 80 degrees in the living room.


    With the sun becoming sparse, it's time to watch out for sadness and to pull out the hibernating happy lamp.
    However, it's also the month before Halloween, which is my beloved bipolar and my favorite holiday!

    He's already gotten warm costumes for the girls. It's so exciting!

    I'm not sure what we are going to wear, but we have some time.

    It's also the time of year when my beloved bipolar remembers how much he likes mentalism and hypnosis. He's wanted to run a psychologically seeded seance, like Derren Brown did, for three years now. We've never had the money but each year we build up closer and closer.

   

Friday, September 9, 2016

It's Helped Us

    People are often jealous of us, I think it's mostly because we're so happy, but happiness is something we work for.
    My husband and I have done a lot of psychological research and we've used what we've learned to improve our lives.

    The most helpful thing we've found is raising your base level of happiness. Once the level of happiness you return to is "pretty happy" it's easy to start living your own life and embracing the positive things you experience.


    Igor Ledochowski's Life Long Learning really helped as well. He sets up a mental castle for you to escape to and builds a really good set up for living.

 

Thursday, September 8, 2016

How to: Keep Calm

    Keep Calm and __________.

    Great words. I am particularly fond of;

  • Keep Calm and Knit On
  • Keep Calm and Have Some Coffee
  • Keep Calm and Eat Cookies
  • Keep Calm and Hug Your Children
  • Keep Calm and Buy a Fish (Ok, I haven't actually seen this one, but I can sketch one out).

Keeping Calm to Carry On doing whatever ever you prefer to carry on doing can be a challenge and I've only mastered it after years of hypnosis and NLP training.


   The biggest, most helpful tool we've developed is this mantra, 
"It can happen, and you can be freaking out about it, or it can happen and you can be fine."

    I use it on myself, I use it on RP and whenever I do, the situation fades away.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Morning Goals

    I'm crazy.
    I really want to be able to blog in the mornings before the babies are awake and crawling all over me and trying to jump off the couch and, you know, doing that thing where they're learning, but as a parent, it seems like they're trying to kill themselves on everything! When I started this blog I had grand ideas about art. Since then my beloved bipolar bought the most giantist box of crayons I have literally ever seen, and it sits squarely in it's very hard to reach hiding spot, so Icy can't break or eat any of them.
    I'd also like to pump some milk and cook breakfast before my daughter wakes up with the goal of eating breakfast with her.

    Yeah, but I'd have to wake up at around 5:30-6:00am and I'm not sure if that is feasible.

    Is it physically possible for me to wake up at 6?
    After my beloved bipolar and I are 100% sure ALL the girls are sleeping, we often talk and cuddle, or watch a not-kid movie so we end up getting in bed around 1-2am. I wake up at least 3 times to nurse the teeny tiniest, and then at 7am, it's "Up for the day" time because I have to get my princess out the door to the bus stop. Icy wakes up somewhere between 5-8am so I make sure she doesn't wake up my beloved bipolars; Icy and Mr. Professional. They seem to be alive best when they can sleep til 9, so I do my part to make sure those two can get that rest.

    Very occasionally, I do ask Mr.Professional to get the oldest up for school. It hasn't happened this year, but I suspect it will once or twice.

    Bipolar is a careful balance of sunlight and sleep, and I do find that being a caring spouse is also a careful balance between taking care of yourself and others.
    I'm the kind of person that easily looses track of myself. I've been known to sacrifice too much of what I need to keep those I love happy. It's been hard to learn how to pull back, ask for what I need and let me give what I need to myself, but, luckily, Mr.Professional is the greatest husband for me and is constantly telling me to love myself as much as he loves me (in other words.)
    He loves me an awful lot, so I have a long way to go.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Emotional

    It's much harder to tell when my adorable baby, Bubbles is depressed.

    She could be in a depressive slump after all her rambunctiousness lately, or she could be emotional because there is a new baby in the house.
    She was extremely attached to her bottle, and was extremely attached to breastfeeding before that, so after her bottle broke, it's become her friend. She is allowed to cuddle it in and pack it around like a stuffed animal, we just don't put any fluids in it.

    Well, last night she woke up desperately crying. My husband went in and comforted her. He said she had such a bad dream, it woke her up.
    Not a great start to the night.
    At 5 am she started crying again, complaining that her diaper was hurting her, so I took it off and we headed out to get her another when she started crying about our missing ferret, who passed away about 6 months ago. She was better after some cuddles, but then it started again when she wanted to drink from her cuddle bottle.

    It could be depression, it could be heightened emotions. Either way, that adorable little girl is getting a lot of hugs for the next few weeks.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Keto Diet: Gettin' Technical

   I've been told multiple times that I assume everyone knows what I know. They say I should share my sources and stop assuming everyone has done the same research I've done so I'll give it a try.

   I don't claim to be an expert at anything, but I do happen to know how to look things up pretty good and I'd like to share what I've learned to explain why I think the Keto Diet is working so well for my beloved bipolar husband.



    Keto Defined:

    For those of you who don't know what the keto diet is, it is a fat-dense diet where one keeps things that digest down into glucose down to a minimum. That would be sugar, carbs and a lot of sugar substitutes.
    Some keep their carbs down below 100 grams, but he's trying to keep his at 20 or below.

    It's recomended for those with epilepsy and both epilepsy and bipolar greatly effect a part of the brain called the hypothalamus.
   I suspect this is why the keto diet has helped him stay so sane despite getting less than 5hrs of sleep a night since our cutie was born.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Blogging for a Month!

    Woo! Today is my 20th post which means I've been blogging for a whole month now!

    I really hope my daily ramblings are helping people see how normal, or even pleasant, life can be when your significant other has bipolar.

   I've had quite a lot of readers poking in and I wanted to express my appreciation to you all!

   You guys keep me going and make me feel like, maybe there is a need for blogs like this.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

The Fine Line

    There is a fine line between mania and just crazy passion.

    There are three passions that run deep in my husband:

  •  making money
  • cooking
  • and his family.

    I think these might be the driving passions behind everything he does in life.

    It's been 40 days since he's been on his keto diet, and I'm so impressed by how he hasn't broken down and scarfed down a chocolate bar. He has been baking fantastic bread and caramel-chocolate covered fry bread to feed us, in part to live vicariously through us eating it. However, even while cooking, he hasn't even tasted his creations for cook-y, flavor adjusting reasons. So impressive! Yesterday MyFitnessPay congratulated him for losing 23 pounds.

     Part of his family, and actually the beginning of his family, is me. <3
    I think my post-baby inability to be intimate with him is really affecting him negatively. It's usually something we do twice a week, and it's been three weeks of nothing so far. His self-esteem is so incredibly low lately, and I feel so bad for him, but I'm not physically ready yet.
    He keeps saying he's trying to woo me with food, and I really don't want his attempts to go in vain. Such a sad situation. His passion is incredibly flattering.

    His cooking is obviously derived from his passion. His passion for me and his passion for feeding his girls.
    Coming home to piles of goodies is wonderful, and with him lucid and calm, I'm not worried right now, but I know that with how little sleep he's gotten recently, he could slip into a hypomania. Probably food related.


   This is what I came home to the other day!
Mr. Professional calls them 
White Girl Fry Bread.
Fry bread covered in a cream cheese-pumpkin spice frosting with homemade caramel and a homemade chocolate ganache. 



Sometimes I love being married to food crazy cook!


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

School Again

    People seem to assume that having three small children, so close in age would be absolutely more than the average person could handle. For us, though, after the second tiny, we had so many tools in place that adding to our kid pile was relatively smooth.

    Having a 10 yr old and a new baby, on the other hand, is much more challenging.

    My oldest is very sensitive so this morning, on the first day of fifth grade, she had a panic attack and we missed the bus. I had to put clothes on the littlest and pack her up in her inconvenient car seat, which I was not planning on doing today.

    Unlike many moms I see on blogging online, I'm not excited for her to go back to school. I'll miss her during the day, like I have since she started preschool and I find it terribly sad how little time I get with her from 4pm to 8:30pm. That's less than 6 hrs to raise my own daughter.
    I don't like my daughter's school. I don't like that she's back in that school today. I don't like the other kids at her school and I don't like the school's anti-bully program, which is really a how-to bully program.

    Over the years my husband has gone manic over a lot of different money-making ideas, and I really, really wish a few of them had worked before now.
    I deeply want to put our little girls in private school.

    As a parent, there are few things I want more than for my kids to be safe and happy.

   

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

In Other News: Coffee

    So there are a few other things I love, other than my husband and my kids.


   One of those things is coffee. 


   I love coffee.
   I love coffee this much! If you know what this beauty is, then I love you to. 
    For those of you who don't know, this is my lovely, Delonghi espresso machine. With the gentle caress of her buttons, she makes lovely, creamy espresso for me.

   The absolute best part about having our own, very special, espresso machine is that our coffee is ALWAYS perfect.
    Always just exactly the way I want it for me, and it's always the way my husband wants it for him!


    I love stevia in my coffee. Don't get me wrong, I'm not diabetic, and when I make cookies, I use 3 cups of sugar. Sugar has its place, and its place is not in my coffee, coagulating in the dregs, making a heavy, grainy paste in the bottom of my mug.
    No! No, I say, my coffee deserves a light, amazingly sweet powder. Ah, stevia, with its mildly bitter aftertaste that perfectly complements my espresso, covered in a pile of fluffy, steamed milk. Mmmmm, tastes like marshmallows.

    Yes. I love coffee 

Monday, August 29, 2016

Mania Update

    Hopefully, my beloved bipolar husband will sleep in this morning. That will help with his hypomania.

    Usually, his hypomanias show up when he's gotten a bit too passionate about something. It's dangerous to his mind, but it is beautiful to see so much passion, that he literally loses control.
    However, this particular hypomania is very obviously due to sleep deprivation, caused by having a teeny tiny new baby.
    His manias usually look like hours and hours of research, with bright, glassy eyes as he pours over information or gushes about what he's learned. It is beautiful. While he's researching, he becomes an expert in whatever he's researching, putting those who've gone to school for years and years to shame with what he can pop off the top of his head and the discoveries he has by putting pieces together.
   And then, it's gone. A week or two later, he has a mild grasp of whatever he was researching, but the genius is gone.
    I keep meaning to write books when he's in a mania, to harness the amazing piles of knowledge he amasses, but I haven't managed to yet. The knowledge builds up so fast, I haven't been able to collect it from him that fast before it fades away.

    Purely sleep deprived hypomania, however, just leads to off-the-wall craziness, a bit like Jim Carry. I suspect Stamper is bipolar. (Warning, this Stamper video contains inappropriate stick figures, cursing and potato salad spitting).

    Manias, of all kinds, are a lack of inhibition similar to being drunk. The actions tend to come before they can be properly thought out and/or filtered.
    Knowing what I do about hypnosis and NLP, I know that people never violate their very core belief system.
 
    If you've ever been drunk and "said something you didn't mean to" while drunk? I bet you really felt that way, or maybe you needed to say it for your mental health. That's a lot how manic inhibition works, but it also comes out physically.

   I was doing dishes and handed my husband three cooking utensils and asked him to "throw these over there for me?" I was implying to put them in their container which he was closer to, but I saw he was in a mania, so as he was arching his arm back, planning on throwing my clean dishes violently on the floor (with an adorable smile) I added, "not that way, throw them into their home."

   Last night he said was going to take a quick shower, and as a funny, he added: "unless I was opposed."
   I responded that I was highly offended, so even though we both knew he was kidding, his plans to shower had gone away. I'm not too witty, so it took me a while to form the comeback that I was offended that he would take a quick shower, that quick showers aren't professional enough, and I told him the only true shower to take was a long one.
    That fixed it and he took a shower.

Friday, August 26, 2016

They Don't Know

    I love honesty. Once I started fully embracing open honestly, it really changed my life. I try to say whatever I would if I were drunk in a situation, only with better words and gentler if need be.
    There are a few situations where I don't spontaneously volunteer information and generally stick to yes or no answers.
    One of those situations would be around my family.

    Once upon a time, one of my very close cousins was dating a boy who was bipolar and to hear my grandmother complain about him and the relationship was quite grating. Especially since her sister in law was also bipolar.

    "I really don't know how anyone can have a relationship with a bipolar." She'd said.

    They don't know my beloved bipolar was diagnosed. They don't know my adorable Bubbles goes manic sometimes.
    If they asked, I would tell them, but I'm not randomly bringing it up because if they did know because I suspect they would attempt to violate all sorts of HIPA. I'm sure they wouldn't believe me anyway because they attributed strange things to my great aunt's bipolar, and not necessarily the things they liked about her, like her decorating skills.

   I often wonder if the price of their relationship is worth it to me. They cost me a lot of stress.

   I'm sure a lot of people wouldn't believe my very sane husband and daughter are bipolar.

   One of my husband's little brother is also diagnosed as bipolar, and their father believes his teenage angst and anger is the bipolar part, not his passionate bouts of drawing.
   Their father is also probably bipolar, but without a diagnosis. He would be absolutely shocked if someone mentioned that he might be bipolar.

   He also doesn't know that my beloved bipolar was diagnosed.

   They don't know.
    They wouldn't understand if we told them and I think the average person wouldn't either.

    I guess that's why I started this blog.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Hypomania

    I knew it was coming. With our tiny new ball of sleep deprivation, manias are almost inevitable.

    Since our littlest daughter isn't quite two weeks old yet, we've been adjusting to having her around at night. By that I mean, she frequently cries at night and wakes everyone up so I take her out to the living room for us to zonk on the couch.

   Well, my beloved bipolar hasn't been getting much sleep lately and when bipolars don't get much sleep they tend to slip into manias.
    He's diagnosed as Bipolar II (or two as it's said out loud) which means his "manias" are a milder form called "hypomania."

    At around 3 am, while I was on the couch, zonked with our littlest daughter, he came out with a crying Icy.
    He laid her down and covered her with her blanket. After a bit of fussing, she fell asleep, and he went out for a walk.
    As soon as he closed that door I knew. I knew the babies had finally broke him into a mania.

    When he got home, he plunked down on his computer and began his crazy typing.

    This is what a hypomania looks like. It reads from the bottom up



Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Much Love

    My beloved bipolar let me sleep in this morning, and cooked me and the kids biscuits and gravy, which is not something he is currently eating. (He's on the keto diet right now).

    It's amazing and sweet that he can be so selfless and caring.

    Our life together has been pretty calm. The ups and downs of both our difficult childhoods have been ironed out by love and a cultivated calmness that has helped us face challenges as if they're nothing more than the next thing on our "To Do" list.
    We're poor right now. We have to be extremely careful with our money because every dollar we make has a specific thing it needs to pay for. Sometimes we have to scramble to find $20-$50 because a bill went through early, or we needed emergency diapers or medicine.
    We choose to be poor because when my beloved bipolar was making a "Living Wage" with his last  job and the job before that, we saw him no more than two or three times a week.
    It got to the point where when I went to drop him off, Bubbles burst into tears. It was obvious that she was having an honest, mental breakdown, and right then, we both realized it was more responsible to be poor, and have him home, than have the money we wanted.
    It was possibly the most heartbreaking thing I've ever seen.
    My little girl, barely speaking, unable to make eye contact through her violent tears, chocking out "Bye-Bye Daddy!"
 
    Because of one of those jobs, he missed the birth of his third daughter, Icy. I don't believe he will ever get over that.

    I have an incredible amount of respect for military families. I don't know how they manage it because I can honestly say, that having gone through those jobs, I know we could not make a military job work.

    I realize that we must still be pretty in love, even after these 8 years because It's so worth the $3,000 a month pay cut we took so we could be together.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Sunlight for the Little One

    Outside exercise is a glorious thing!
    One thing about living in Montana is all the lovely hiking trails and parks available to us at all times.

    My girls are particularly fond of one called Greenough park, which is named after the couple who donated the land. It's a long, beautiful walk filled with pine and aspen trees, all manner of Montana birds and occasionally bears.
    It really refuels Robot Princess, who sometimes sneaks out a contraband leaf or pine cone and leaves my tiny girls, Bubbles and Icy, peaceful and happy for a day or two.

    The only problem is the massive exposure to sunlight, which can send Bubbles into a tiny toddler mania.

   If I want to let my girls play in our sad, 5' wide, miniature yard every day, I have to keep all the curtains down so Bubbles can save her sunlight for outside time.
    With Asperger's I'm sensitive to the light, so I really don't mind living with the light shut out, but a sunlight is something to be EXCEPTIONALLY aware of, and it changes, each day. In Missoula it can be storming with angry hail and then 10 minutes later, a perfectly beach sunny day.

    Keeping track of how much sleep Bubbles has gotten, how hyper she is and how likely she is to go into a mania really dictates how much outside time we have or if we can go explore our lovely state.
    I have to admit, it's all exceptionally worth it. Living in Montana, with my little cutie, carefully planning around the weather, I'm just saying it's work that takes practice and skill.

    I do recommend visiting Greenough park if you're ever exploring Missoula.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Exposure!

    Sorry if I disappointed you, but this post contains no nudity.

   I'm not diagnosed, but I'm almost certain I'm an Aspie, or someone with Asperger's syndrome.
   I could have started an Aspie blog and gone on about how jealous I am of normal people's ability to "tune out" noises that I CAN'T ESCAPE FROM, like the never-ending refrigerator buzz, or how eye contact is such an intimate, physical sensation that it can nauseate me. I chose instead to blog about my husband's brain difference because honestly, there are a bunch of Aspies blogging about being Aspie. A gift of Asperger's is being well written, so anything I could say about my life and experiences has pro'ly been typed out already by another Aspie.
    Bipolar on the other hand, tends to come with inconsistency, which makes blogging a challenge, so I felt that my life experiences would be put to better use if I use my Aspie writing skills to improve bipolar exposure.


    As a note; I really like the descriptive word "Aspie." It's not a horrifying label and I feel it's similar to describing myself as "brunette" or "freckly." It allows me to explain to people with one word that I'm sensitive to smells, mistake noises for human voices, have a hard time talking to people and sometimes take stubbing my toe on the table leg as a personal slight from the table. I might spend the rest of the day wondering what I did to the table to make it so mad at me.
   I see it as a useful, descriptive adjective, so I do tend to use "bipolar" as a descriptive adjective instead of the more popular, removed description of "with bipolar," which sounds to me like a dog's name.
   "He was diagnosed with bipolar," sounds like he was diagnosed in the presence of a puppy named Bipolar.

   My grammar corrector seems awfully offended that I refer to bipolars that way, but I hope humans persons feel differently.
    I hope bipolars can use it to explain with one word that sleep is extremely important to them. That they need extra hugs and sunlight in the winter time, and if they don't talk to their friends for two weeks, they are still good friends, and that when they research something for three days without much food or sleep, what they really need is a good, long night's rest.










Friday, August 19, 2016

"How can you tell?" (That my toddler is also bipolar).

    On the rare occasion that I do share that I feel my three year old daughter is bipolar, the same question seems to pop up. That and the same "you're a bit stupid," face.

   "Well, why do you think that?" They'll ask me, eyebrows raised and furrowed in the middle. "Little kids are just hyper." They'll tell me, trying to convince me that my adorable little girl can't possibly be manic.
   "All little kids are moody," is another they'll frequently use to explain away her depressions.

   I understand, and it's so sweet that they can't imagine her as "having a mental disorder." Honestly, even in her teenage years when she can possibly be diagnosed, I doubt anyone would be able to see her symptoms because of how well she's adapting and using her tools at such a tender age.

   With three other kids though, I know the difference between kid hyper and her mania.

   One of the key differences is that she can't process what she's doing before she does it.

   A good example was last night.
   She hadn't napped, which makes her susceptible to mania.
   She was sitting on my lap, repeatedly kissing my cheek. Adorable. I knew, however, that the excited way she was repeating an action was a sign that this could become dangerous.

   "Honey, can you take a breath for me?" I asked her in my gentle-but-firm Mommy Voice.

   The lack of nap was too powerful and she gently opened her mouth to hold my cheek between her teeth.

   This is where Daddy swooped in and laid her down for a very, very late nap.

   Obviously, if she wasn't taken off my lap, and wasn't able to take her breaths, she would have bitten me. Not could have. It was inevitable at that point and I'm so glad I had Daddy to jump in because sitting on Mommy was part of what was triggering her mania.

   Most little kids can be redirected at that point, but for her, sleep was about the only thing that would keep her from hurting someone or breaking something. I can tell you that unlike her non-bipolar sister Icy who delights in causing destruction, when Bubbles hurts someone or breaks something, it ruins her day.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Impressively Normal

    Before my beloved bipolar was diagnosed as bipolar he believed that the feeling of mania was how normal people felt, all of the time so he pushed himself to maintain his manias.

   He got really into finding gold so we bought a highbanker and some metal detectors.

   He got really into gem cutting, so we bought a faceter.

   These were certainly maniac purchases, but we never bought anything we didn't have the money for and these are things we can, and have, returned to.

   We still take road trips and collect gems or dig out the metal detectors and take the kids on a treasure hunt. It's still a fun, recreational bonding experience. I'm certainly glad we made those purchases back when we had the money to, and I'm so happy to be able to use them now that we're lacking money.


    I've heard lots of stories of people in manias selling their houses and what not to feed their manias and it really makes me appreciate how impressively normal our lives have been.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Light Fight

   Oh boy!

   Those of you who've had a baby might be familiar with the concept that babies need sunlight to help them develop.
    Their tiny new livers have a hard time processing the large amounts of bilirubin produced in their little bodies. Bilirubin is the yellowish pigment that makes the color in bruises. Babies who are a bit early (like mine usually are) tend to turn a little yellow, especially in the whites of the eyes.
    This is called jaundice and while it's not necessarily dangerous in itself, we happen to have a happy lamp for my husband's bipolar and I'm using it to help our littlest dissolve her bilirubins.
 
    Our seven-day-old daughter needs a sun lamp on and pointed at her to help her little liver filter bilirubins out of her blood.

    Bubbles, our bipolar 3 yr old has been avoiding naps and waking up in the night. She's sleep deprived and too much sunlight can easily trigger a tiny mania in Bubbles.
    I've been keeping the curtains all down all day so we can still go outside for a half hour to play.

    Now, for whatever reason, Bubbles LOVES sitting between the light and the baby.

   It takes all of my Mommy Patience to keep distracting her away from the light, and with my own sleep deprivation, my Mommy Patience is running on its reserves.

   Oh the light fights!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

My Beloved Bipolar on Keto

   My beloved bipolar husband has been on a keto (ketogenic) diet for almost a month now for weight loss and it seems to have helped his bipolarness out quite a bit!

   Weight loss has occasionally been something he'd get manic about so for up to two weeks, he'd go crazy working out and avoiding carbs or what not, but since being on the keto diet, he has logged his food on his MyFitnessPal app for twenty-eight days.
    Twenty-eight days is a staggering consistency for him, and I assume it is for most bipolars as well.

   He's been consistently, and moderately motivated, being able to push himself to work out when he doesn't quite feel up to it, but not digging himself into a video game hole or working out seven days a week when he perhaps should be sleeping. It's so nice to see!

    He has lost noticeable weight, 10 lbs that I know about, and has gained so much mental balance.
    He is visibly thinner. His good friend repeatedly gushed about how much thinner his face looked, and such when they were out together. I bet he'll be on the keto diet soon. He was noticeably impressed, (and possibly a bit jealous).

    I am so very proud of my beloved bipolar.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Sad vs Depression

    As of now, my beloved bipolar takes no medication for his bipolarness, relying on his own willpower and his happy lamp to stay out of hypomanias and depressions.
    We had a long, unhelpful bought of dealing with doctors, who prescribed him something that sent him into a terrible depression, deeper than the natural depression we both found ourselves in when I miscarried my beloved bipolar's first baby. After almost eight horrible months of fighting, we decided maybe medication wasn't quite worth it and he's been impressing me ever since.

   With a 10 day old baby comes sleep deprivation, and with sleep deprivation comes manias. My beloved bipolar is very excited about food lately, going so far as to cook sugar-free dark chocolate, but he's managed to stay out of a mania.

   Also, his mother was here in Montana for a visit, all the way from Iowa.
  With the thought that she was here to see the new baby and visit with us, Mr. Professional set about making paneer cheese the night before. A great endeavor that does leave an uncomfortably large mass of dishes, along with making my butter cloth dirty. He researched and jumped into a new recipe, chili paneer, pouring love into his cast iron pan, obviously excited to impress his mommy with his cooking skills. She owns and operates a catering business and is one of the reasons he's so passionate about cooking.
     He bought a sparkling red wine with some bleu cheese to try. He was ready and poised, aimed and ready to impress!

    She showed up and chatted briefly, grabbing Bubbles and Icy, and whisked off, a half hour away to her parent's house, with no intention of coming back into town.
    The heartbreaking fact became obvious right then. She wasn't quite here to visit her son.
 

    We ended up inviting his friend over to enjoy his beautiful meal, and wine and cheese.
    It was a very nice evening, but like any normal human being who feels rejected, he was crestfallen and sad, really sad, but he wasn't depressed.

   It's really easy to be proud of him. He's stayed motivated enough to keep on top of chores, helping me keep the house pleasantly clean lately without going over the top into a cleaning mania.
   Cleaning seems to be an easy thing to set off a mania for most of the bipolars I've known.

    Even bipolars can get sad without getting depressed.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Mild Depression

    My beloved bipolar husband hates the term "depression" when applied to himself because he rarely perceives himself as sad. I suppose he might not be feeling sadness, but it does certainly look like he is to me.
    His depressions mostly come out as a lack of motivation with a touch of moodiness. It usually represents itself as boredom and a strong desire to bury himself in video games for a few days.

   I've learned that giving him extra physical affections really helps cuts down on how long these phases last.
   Extra hugs, quick kisses or back rubs while I'm walking past him and any opportunity for physical contact goes a long way.

   The hugs may seem different, maybe a bit quiet, or hollow on his end but I know he needs and likes them.
    He doesn't sigh like he often does when we hug, or smile, or bury himself in my shoulder and sigh. The hugs are a bit robotic and complacent like it's difficult for him to go through the motions, so I try to let him go as soon as I feel any resistance.
    I don't want my hugs to be oppressive, especially when he's in a depressive swing. I think he'd say that he loves my hugs, and I doubt he'd feel like he doesn't like them when he's depressed, but I'm not sure how accurate his own emotional read-out is when he's feeling like that, so I'll just keep holding him loosely, but as frequently as I can.

   When he's had a particularly strong hypomania, I go all out with the extra cuddles and it can turn a week's worth of video games into two days of video games.
    Video games are certainly not the problem, and he does play them when he's feeling normal, or even occasionally fiending maniac-ly over them while in hypomania.

    It's simply a visible symptom of his depression when he quietly disappears into a video game. One of his most beloved pastimes is finding clues in the backstories in games, movies, and cartoons to piece together conspiracies.
    Another sign of depression is when his conspiracies go away.
    When he's depressed, his automatic socializing skills seem to turn off. Normally he'll gush about what he's doing in his RPG or how impressive the storyline is in his new game. While in depression, he quietly sinks into his computer, facing directly into it instead of at an approachable angle to it.
    It can be quite a discrete change, one which has taken me a long time to be able to pick out.


   I suppose the moral of my post today is that bipolars need hugs.

Friday, August 12, 2016

My Beloved Bipolar's New Love

   If you ask a bipolar person what their hobbies are, you'll likely get a very meaty chunk of whatever manic topics are holding their interests currently, or something very vauge implying that they haven't found a hobby yet.

   It seems to me like they have a hard time discerning what their manic hobbies are as opposed to the passions that run deeply within them, like ribbons wrapped around the very core of their human being.

   For my aunt, one of her true passions was decorating. This came out in impromptu five hour room makeovers, complete with new furniture and wallpaper. Magic.

   For my beloved bipolar husband, one of his core passions is being a daddy. I believe it has shaped a lot his life, both consciously and subconsciously. 


   We had our fourth, and probably last daughter Aug 3rd, 2016 and to see the incredible love radiate off him is one of the best things in my life. 
    Don't get me wrong, we got together so that him and I could be together, and we charish the rare alone moments we get, but the the volume and depth of his adoration for those little girls is something you can feel.
   It's comparable to standing in awe of the cool ocean waves on a warm day or staring into a fire while enjoying it's warm glow.
   His daddy affection is very much a comforting, majestic natural wonder. 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Awareness

   Having been with my husband for as long as I have, I can see so much of him in my second daughter and I am 90% sure my little girl is also bipolar.

   Honestly, I have no negative emotions knowing this.
   I'm glad that we did notice because Daddy was able to impart his own coping tools.

   I'm glad that we know, and I wish it more ok for other parents to know when their tiny kiddos are bipolar because those skills are so helpful to learn early in life.

  I'm grateful that I know to just hold her when she needs it, and every day, I am amazed to see her take deep breaths to calm her 3-year-old self down when she starts getting overexcited.

   My daughter is impressive because we love her and because Daddy knew what to teach her to help her help herself.