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Old 07-07-2018, 08:42 AM   #1
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Char1960 has no updates.
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Default Fantastic News!!

I was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder in 2003 after my medical practice filed bankruptcy. Before my diagnosis, I had experienced classic symptoms but was misdiagnosed with depression multiple times and put on anti-depressive medications which increased my cycling. I hit rock bottom with a severe depressive period as my practice disintegrated around me. I stopped working 11/02, and I admitted myself to a psych ward for ten days. I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and spent an agonizing year with my psychiatrist trying to find the right medicine combination for me. I attempted suicide in 1/03 and spent the next year alternating between manic and depressive episodes despite medication. I divorced my husband during this period, but I retained custody of my two teenage daughters. I then became under tremendous stress due to an unexpected pregnancy at age 45 (2004) conceived during a manic episode. The pregnancy was miserable, and after my daughter's birth, I went through a 3-year custody battle in which I lost custody of my daughter. I began seeing a new psychiatrist right before her birth and afterward we started the tedious process of finding a new successful med routine
My daughter's father and I were severely antagonistic toward each other from the start. He was a narcissist and delighted in tormenting for 13 years. He died this past February, and I now have my daughter with me full time.

Now for the good part:
I am no longer under the sway of the incredible anger, frustration, and anxiety I felt for the past 13 years. She is a delightful teen and a pleasure to have in my life. At my next psych appointment after my daughter's father's death, my doc told me I looked like an entirely different person. I could have twirled and danced in his office. I gave him a huge hug, as he had taken excellent care of me, saving me many times from despair. At my next three month visit, he asked me what I thought about going back into practice. I am an OB/GYN. I was startled and asked him what HE thought about my return to practice. He encouraged me to pursue re-entry and stated, as long as I kept my anxiety to a tolerable level, I should have no difficulties.
I trained for 12 years for an MD degree specializing in OB/GYN. I practiced for 12 years before I had to stop working and I loved my career choice. It's been 15 years since I had to quit. Re-entry is possible. And I feel like a million dollars!
I was medication compliant the entire time since diagnosis.
I never missed a psychiatrist appointment although I did show up one time a day early!
I STRONGLY encourage concurrent psychotherapy for anyone with Bipolar Disorder.
I had a supportive family although I believe they became extremely fatigued regarding my many ranting and raving e-mails as I vented regarding my situation.

During the past five years, I did try to improve my stress tolerance and increase exposure to others by attending a local community college Fine Arts program. I had always wanted to take art classes.
I also sought part-time employment at Michaels, again, to increase my contact with adults and exercise my brain muscles!

I have traveled a path fraught with the most profound despair and extreme happiness. I have endured enough stress to kill an elephant. It took years of work to arrive at this place in my life, but I managed to persevere despite many obstacles.
I encourage all of my fellow friends who feel frustrated and angry at the hand life dealt them, a hand including Bipolar disorder, to continue striving for that "normal" place, whatever that means for each of us. It is possible to get there, but it takes work. Find that strong person inside of you who has probably hidden for many years, and renew his/her acquaintance.
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Old 07-07-2018, 04:24 PM   #2
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Default Re: Fantastic News!!

Well, you're quite an inspiration! I've never had children, but I imagine that being separated from them and engaging in a years-long battle with a former spouse would be agonizing. It sounds like you're over the mountain and are planning a comeback. You should be very proud. No doubt your patients will benefit from your renewed passion and experience.
I've decided that I don't want a diagnosis anymore.
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Old 08-24-2018, 06:20 PM   #3
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Default Re: Fantastic News!!

This is so amazing!!!
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Old 10-14-2018, 05:57 AM   #4
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Default Re: Fantastic News!!

Thanks for posting I needed to read these success stories. You've been through hell and have come back from it. Maybe I'll be able to work next year. I want to love my life-So glad you got custody o f your daughter when her dad died. 45 and pregnant would be hard for anyone and she must realize you fought for her for years. I bet you're a great OB/GYN!
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