Not a good match — a Bipolar with an Alzheimer’s patient

         OK.  I’ve been staying away cuz that last post had just a little too much temper, and since the temper was mine, it’s been eating me alive.  Regrettably, since writing that sentence nearly an hour ago and coming back to this page now, I’ve experienced another bout.  I thought it time to clarify how badly my thinking disorder matches with an Alzheimer’s patient.

         Having been diagnosed Manic Depressive (back then, that’s what it was called) twenty-four years ago and being who I am, with the interests and proclivities I have, I’ve had a long time to seek help with a major bane of my existence.  Hands down, I give my best kudos to an eighty (somewhere in there) year old system I find quickly on the net by searching Abraham A Low + Recovery.   Interestingly, having just done that I am faced with a list of feelings and impulses the Recovery International Method helps and of those on the list these apply currently:

anger/outbursts, anxiety, bipolar disorder (interesting – when I first came across this program there were only a couple brief mentions of “manic depression” in the literature), compulsions, conflict resolution, eating disorders, fatigue, feelings of low self worth, fears, light-headedness, mood disorders, obsessions, palpitations, panic, panic attacks, poor self image, sleep problems, social anxiety, STRESS.

            I actually nearly blacked out on the freeway to see my health supervisors this morning.  I learned of Dr. Low’s Recovery Method during the ten years I was away from where I’ve lived all the other years since I married my “wasband”, who is Maxine’s son.  I’ve now been back close to four years.  While I was away I learned to practice the method and even led groups for a couple of those years.  I’ve written and shared with others in meetings and over the phone several dozens of examples that have helped me deal with certain of my experiences.  I realized, as soon as I had “righted” myself as I drove, that I had “worked myself up”.  I had been thinking how little I had accomplished towards taking care of myself since I had last been in, and wondering how I was going to explain my going backwards in my goals, rather than forward, as I desire to do more than I can say.

           There’s more to this story, of course.  It worked out amazingly well that a University student was rotating for practical experience as a nurse practitioner, and, with my permission, sat in this morning.  I felt supported and well advised as two sympathetic and experienced women shared understanding statements and stories referencing “living with” someone with Alzheimer’s, and pointed out that I was indeed under STRESS.  As I have experienced before, I left with options I had been unaware of prior.  Perhaps, it is possible to find someone to give me respite for a night, or even a weekend.  After eight months, that would be a true Godsend.  Maxine has two children.  I may not be a good match, but at least I care about her wishes to not be placed in assisted living.  I may not be a good match, but at least I’m here.

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