So I have three teens at home. That should be manageable right? Not so much – lol. I have had to reschedule at least two appointments and completely forgotten the homecoming football game in the space of a week. I swear I use my online calendar but I suppose it really only works if I remember to put items actually ON said calendar.
Now to the taxi part: I literally feel like I spend my whole day driving or working (at home or at the office) and it’s only going to get worse. I’m up at 6ish every day and have to get the younger teens going, then I get the older teen to jazz band (he has to be there by 6:30am) then I’m back to the house and will now also be right back on the road by 6:30am to get the youngest teen to her jazz band thus making it impossible to come back to the house to see the middle teen off to school. Next I’m off to work, which is usually action-packed, then back to the house to make dinner (maybe!), then back on the road to pick up the eldest teen from college, then usually to the grocery store (if I didn’t do it during my earlier dinner window) and finally home around 8:30pm and at that late hour we finally sit down to the dinner I’ve hopefully managed to magically concoct. See just how long those sentences are? That is my day in a nutshell and all due to having kids – something I don’t recommend for the faint of heart!
All of this assumes there are no doctor appointments – usually there are – and that I can quickly whip something up that consists of something other than cereal. At some point I finally sit down and enjoy the night which usually ends by the time my wife comes home from her second job around 10ish. To say I have a long day is something of an understatement.
Now this would be a tough way to be for ANY parent but imagine doing this with bipolar. I know it impacts me in several ways but I’ll just cover a couple here.
Let’s start with sleep. Getting up even earlier than I have been is going to be difficult. I tend to be one of those “hit the alarm five times before finally giving in” sort of folks so earlier hours is not fun for anyone around me. This is rough even when I’ve managed to remember to make the coffee the night before (sometimes I forget this necessary potion and how much I despise doing it while waking up) and usually I’m able to functionally have a conversation about a half hour later. Now I will have even less time to fit in my “get up and go” panties on. Ugh.
Now on to self-care. I know I’m not alone by any stretch but having bipolar means working extra hard to get any in. It’s hard for most people I know to do so of course but it’s even more of a problem for me and my bipolar usually gets the best of me otherwise. Of course like most folks I know, I have to meditate, caffeinate, and medicate (for us bipolar folks) and I’m pretty good at the second two but that first one, oh it’s a doozy. I truly stink at meditation, no matter how hard I have tried, I generally end up with thoughts of “This is a ridiculous way to spend a half hour” or “I must look seriously absurd sitting here in my car sleeping upright.” and “Screw this” before finally giving up and go back to surfing the internet or back to the office. I usually try meditating in my car on lunch break because there really isn’t any other time I can squeeze it in (see paragraph two for details)
See? I really am like most parents (and people) when it comes to this stuff. Bipolar or not many folks I know struggle with some of these in our own ways. I’d love to know what you find helpful!