I have a great deal to be thankful for these days, and also a large number of things that are worrysome. The best of the good things is that my mood seems to be stabilizing, and on the first medication I've tried (Lamictal). I've been taking it for three weeks now, and my grossly out-of-control irritability is pretty much gone. I still have mood swings, but instead of switching daily or several times a day, for now I seem to have settled into a pattern where I feel good (but not manic) during the week, and depressed on the weekends. The depression started to appear when I stopped using my light box, but discontinuing that was also what took care of my daily descent into bitchyland (the remaining irritability), so good riddance. And as Jeff pointed out, I get to have my cake and eat it too- Lamictal is only really effective for treating bipolar lows. So I get to keep my hypomanic periods. Unless I should suddenly start to develop mania with psychotic symptoms, hallucinations, or grandiose delusions (which seems unlikely), I'm golden.
Jeff is also feeling better, which feels good for all of us. Things were really rocky for a while- with my mood completely unpredictable, his depressed and highly irritable, and four small children...well, let's just say it wasn't Disneyland. At least not as it's portrayed in the commercials- I've been there and know better ;)
I'm also supposed to be making some lifestyle changes- Making Sure I Get 8 Hours of Sleep Each Night, and No Caffiene After Noon. Obviously, this is a lot harder for me than taking the medicine (just look at the time stamp on this post, realize my kids get up around 9, and do the math). But I am trying. I'm not a person who goes to bed at 9- never have been. That's Jeff. But I'm striving to become a person who goes to bed around midnight. Caffiene is my life's blood in the winter, so that isn't going so hot. I think I'd actually take it by IV if I could. Nah...I know I would.
The worrysome things really aren't so bad when I consider what things were like a few months ago. We have a consultation at our mental health clinic for Allie on Friday to hopefully start the process of getting her help with whatever is going on with her. We are scheduling screenings for Gabe and Eva to make sure they are developmentally on-track (and very likely, we'll discuss behavioral referrals for them). Jeff is missing a decent chunk of work to keep all these appointments, but thankfully a bus driver's schedule is pretty flexible, so it's not a threat to his job- just our finances.
There are more good things, though...I made feta jalepeno dip today, and while it could have used a little more jalepeno, it was still scrumptious. My pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving turned out looking almost professional (and tasting fantastic, if I can be pardoned for saying so). Thanksgiving went great. We had it here, just us and our parents. They brought stuff and I made the turkey, stuffing, and cranberries. It was the first holiday gathering I have completely enjoyed since Allie was born...because since that day, we've been pressured to attend two (sometimes three) different celebrations each Thanksgiving and Christmas, often on the same day. And by "pressured" I mean coerced. But this time, instead of hitting Jeff's folks' house at 11:30, eating, dashing out with crabby kids in tow at 3:30 to arrive at my grandma's by 4 and spend the remainder of our evening trying to protect her 300+ music boxes in their glass-fronted cabinets from toddler hands, we just relaxed the morning away as the turkey cooked, played with the kids, and waited for our parents to arrive. Then a thoroughly restful meal where for once I didn't have to worry what my kids might be breaking, because whatever it was, it's mine and I probably didn't need it anyway.
Sorry that this was kind of an aimless post- I haven't written in a while, so I just sort of hopped around through all the things I felt like talking about.