I have cyclothymia. It's kind of like "baby bi-polar" my mood swings aren't as severe, but I can get pretty worked up. I lean towards the manic side; I have learned to fight depression with reasonable success. I am learning to deal with the mania. Part of it honestly feels pretty good. You know the high you can get sometimes where you just feel great about everything. That bounce in your step kind of feeling. That's where it stops. At first you think it's just a good mood. When it continues for too long, you start to realize there is more going on.
There is this idea inside of me that I am being super productive and getting so many projects done with great ability. When the dust settles there is often a messy wake to look back upon. Projects started and not finished. Not even cleaned up after often. It can be quite frustrating for those around you.
Once one passes the stage of "I can do anything" (so if that's bipolar, perhaps mine is "I can do most things") there is another level added. Irritability. Things start to really get on your nerves. You (OK, I) start to get short with people, my speech is clipped or aggressive. I don't want anybody around me. Everything pushes my button of frustration.
Then we add that I am right. There is no arguing with me. Now this is probably also part of my personality -- cyclothymia or not -- but it's intensified here.
I have most likely had this mood issue from my teen years. I can remember having anxiety and panic attacks as a child and occasionally sleepwalking; though I think now that it was panic attacks that woke me up not actual sleepwalking. I spent up to the birth of my first child at 28 dealing with anxiety and panic attacks without any medical help.
It was not fun, but I will say that I did manage to live through it.
I had a brief diagnosis of panic attacks and anxiety and was given medication and a little hope that this could be managed better.
Then I got pregnant again and I wasn't even given the option of taking medication. Doctor took me off everything until I was done nursing. Which of course I did for 13 months after birth. So close to 4 years with the addition of a fairly decent bout of post partum. Mine started as peri-partum, which is to say that it began in my 2nd trimester. Don't get me wrong, I was beyond thrilled to be pregnant! I wanted children since I was one and to finally be pregnant! The bag of tricks that came along for the ride was not something I wanted to carry around.
Finally getting a full diagnosis and medication was a life changer. Since then I have been working on the adjustment to living with medication and still learning the signs and control over myself and my mood.
It is a daily process.
I choose to be grateful I have the opportunity to have help and be a better person.