Sunday, February 27, 2011

Before and After

Well, emotionally I am back on an even keel, even though physically I am still lagging.  I have a rotten cold, but my mood is actually pretty good despite it all.  Once again, it was cleaning up my diet and increasing my Empowerplus that did the trick.  I just have no appetite these days, and it is challenging to remember to take the full dose of Empowerplus one at a time throughout the day.

But, I can remember.  Since my last post I've noticed a few things that are different between now and when I was on meds.  Remembering is one thing that is massively improved.  I never really lost any memory of the significant things, but I had a heck of a time remembering what I had done that day - what I'd eaten, whether I'd taken my prescriptions, etc.  I used to keep notepads to write everything down, and even that was hit and miss, because sometimes I forgot to write it down, or I'd see a big gap and wonder if I'd really missed a dose or just forgotten to record it.  But now the notepads are gone, and I easily remember every detail!  So that is one huge improvement over meds.

The second big thing is the expression on my face.  On the message boards we've discussed how the meds relax certain muscles in your face, so that you look stoned as well as actually being drugged out of your mind.  My driver's licence photo was black and white proof of that - I looked absolutely dreadful.  I recently received my renewal in the mail, and it was time for a new photo.  I went to get it taken that day.  I was a little worried about the new photo while waiting for it to come in the mail, but it was worth the wait.  Although these photos are designed to be unflattering, it really looked like a completely different person in the new one!  It was like my whole face was lifted, my eyes were open, I looked alive instead of mostly dead.  Which let's face it, I pretty much was back then.

The third thing to change for the better is my handwriting.  I had a bit of a tremor when I was on meds, and it was hard to write.  Now I enjoy writing and I think my handwriting is quite elegant.  A recent Reader's Digest had an article on handwriting analysis, and one of the things they said really struck me.  They said that people whose handwriting changes frequently are moody.  I remember when I was in college my notes would look completely different from one week to the next.  That would have been 15 years before I was diagnosed bipolar, but obviously the signs were there to see!  I am relieved now to see that my handwriting has been consistent through the past year, it is like independent proof that I am healed!

Now, if only my cold would go away I'd be golden!