Very few who know me know I have bipolar, even fewer know I fall on the Autism Spectrum… I got tired of hearing how good I am at hiding it.
The bipolar diagnosis didn’t come until April 2014 (I knew I needed help before that, but lack of insurance posed a bit of an issue financially). The ASD diagnosis came about this past spring.
I was misdiagnosed with ADD (misdiagnosis of ADHD and bipolar is very common as both present very similarly) and subsequently was put on medication. Medication helped, but eventually proved to be a band-aid.
Things started to go South after my miscarriage in February/March 2009. Any loss of pregnancy is excruciating. Mine involved 3 hospital trips totaling 21+ hours, 3 ultrasounds (each with less hope than the previous), and a ton of tears in 3 weeks.
The experience, pardon my language, fucked me up.
Let’s fast forward a bit…
August 2009 – married
September 2009 – Aidan met the criteria in 3 areas for Early Intervention
October 2009 – conceived Lincoln
July 2010 – Lincoln’s born
August 2010 – the shit hits the fan…
The shit being Postpartum Depression.
I had mixed emotions about Lincoln. I absolutely loved him, but he was tough. The boy breastfed every hour on the hour for 40 minutes. I had to wear him the 20 minutes he wasn’t feeding, otherwise he would scream.
That was all day and all night.
Looking back is painful. I said and did some terrible things. Talked myself down from worse. Had to be stopped a small handful of times from doing the unforgivable.
Looking back is painful. But when I do, I always see Nolan. Even when I’ve put him so far up a corner he couldn’t possibly do anything but leave me to myself, he’s refused.
I could have lost everything a hundred times over. It was too easy not to. I am reminded every time my children sleepily make their way downstairs to melt into my arms before starting the day. Every time they tell me they love me. When their faces light up because I gave them dessert on a school night. I am constantly reminded how much I could have lost had Nolan not believed I was “so much more”.
If he could have that unwavering belief in me for 7 years (3 1/2 of them most likely being the worst in my life), I can believe in him one more time. Because who’s to say this time won’t be different from all the other times? Everything about who we are as individuals has changed. Everything outside of us has no other choice but to follow.