Friday, September 6, 2013

What I Remember...

     A while back I posted that I was going to write about how I was diagnosed and my manic experience that occurred when I was in the air force.  There is a lot that is fuzzy and I don't remember, but I am going to try and document what I do know.

     I believe it must have all started in my teen years.  I've always been overly emotional, more on the manic side than anything.  I suppressed it by drinking alcohol starting at the age of 17 and from then on at least every other weekend until I left for the air force at the age of 23.

     In basic training I wasn't allowed access to alcohol for 8 weeks, so for 2 months I was without my self prescribed depressant causing an increase in my manic side.  This led up to my episode that turned into hospitalization and a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.

     So that is my generalized interpretation of what happened medically from what I've experienced and learned about my disorder over the years.  Now for the specifics.

     Well to start at the turning point, I left for basic training Feb 24, 2004.  My mom, stepdad, and Chris (my boyfriend at the time) dropped me off at the hotel which was to be my last free night.  I was happy with Chris probably because we were so alike at the time = goofballs.  Anyways, that's another story.  But I remember Chris walked me to my room and on the way we stopped in front of a mirror.  I said we need to take a picture look how cute we are.  He said we don't have a camera.  I replied who needs one we can take a mental picture and I clicked our mental camera.  I will never forget that picture.  No matter what I've blocked out or forgotten, that picture will remain.

     I was excited that night.  My roommate was fun to talk to; we were both nervous little white girls getting ourselves into something we couldn't even imagine.  She ended up being separated into a band flight at basic otherwise she would have been bunking with me.  Longoria (L) another girl I befriended in San Diego did end up sharing a dorm with me.  A dorm meaning 2 rooms filled with 26 girls.

     It was so overwhelming getting on the plane and off onto a bus with men shouting orders at us.  Lining up and following instructions in fear of standing out and being yelled at.  Which I was singled out because I answered a supposed rhetorical question when no one else did while standing in formation.  A very tall black man yelled at me inches from my face.

     At that time, even with all the abnormal circumstances I still felt normal.  I will continue with the starting of the abnormal feelings in my next post.