Long time no see / by Charlie Francis Cassidy

Well, it’s been awhile.

I’m still in Melbourne and I did in fact find both a place to live and a job, not too long after my last post actually. A lot has been going on.

It’s been what, maybe close to 7 months since I posted? I’ll probably jump back and forth a bit here so bear with me.

One of the more obvious things that comes to me is that I managed to stay out of hospital for about 5 months! That’s the longest I’ve managed in a long time. I did end up getting hospitalised twice in the last 2 months however, which, I think they each deserve their own post on the experience and lead up.

I lost about a month to the side effects of Lithium rendering me basically zombie like. I don’t remember a lot of that month but someone close did describe it as me not really being there. So, I was really out of it. Which I hate, it’s one of the big things I worry about when going on all these different medications, this exact thing was a fear. It happened, and it took me a month to notice it. But more on that another time, it goes with one of my hospital stays, technically both of them.

It took me awhile to actually find a psychiatrist. Hell, it took me awhile to find a decent GP. Eventually I got a referral to this one guy who, after a whole session of going through my entire history says to me, and I quote “I can’t help you”.

A huge waste of time, money and not a great hit to how I was feeling at the time. This was around the time that I changed my GP as well and managed to find a really amazing one.

The next psychiatrist I am still seeing. He is, well, I have mixed feelings. He is kinda quirky in a way I like but sessions are under 15 minutes which isn’t a lot of time for me to gather my thoughts and recall everything I need to bring up. I very frequently forget all sorts of things or just don’t have enough time to respond to what a new treatment is. Plus he doesn’t seem to be keeping track of what I’m on, he completely forgot he put me on something recently and always asks me what I’m taking. But maybe he just likes to promote self awareness in medications, I mean, if anyone is going to know it should be me. I also probably should start writing important things down. He is considering putting me on Valproate again, but I can’t remember why I went off it in the first place. Really need to keep track of these things.

I started seeing a psychologist at some point too. She is lovely. I haven’t made an appointment for this year yet though. I’m not sure why exactly. I’ve had a lot going on I guess.

Now for a quick recap on medications I have tried since moving here - 

First it was - Saphris (asenapine) and Lamotrigine.
Then Seroquel XR was added.
Then that was removed again.
Next - Saphris is replaced with Olanzapine.
Now Pristiq was added.
Before it was taken away again because hello mania.
Then Lithium was added into the mix.
For a bit I was taking nothing (more on this in a later post).
Then I was back on Lithium and Seroquel.
Then Seroquel was replaced with Abilify.
Then Lithium disappeared.
So did Abilify.
Finally, I am now on Latuda.

Yep, just one thing. It’s an atypical anti-psychotic.