It became more and more difficult not to touch my growing stomach. It became a habit to rest my cup of tea upon it; it made a great table at times. It was much more difficult not to want to love my unborn baby.
I knew I could not keep doing this. I knew the feelings I had were wrong and so through sobs and tears I told my midwife. She was brilliant and understood why when she checked the heartbeat of my baby at regular check-ups I would stick my fingers tight into my ears and hum a loud tune, anything but to hear the heartbeat but I could hear it no matter how loudly I sang and it pierced my heart like a knife.
I had suffered with hydronephrosis of the kidney in my last two pregnancies and at 27 weeks the crippling paid began again. My midwife, despite not being allowed too came with me to see my consultant and I broke down and told him how I didn’t want my baby. I thought he would be shocked, instead he said to me “Do you love your other children?” I told him more than life itself. “So you will love this baby too, trust me you will”. He smiled; I desperately wanted to believe him. He gave me some glimmer of hope that day.
Back home things were difficult, I was not living, I was just surviving. Matt became the main career for the children and I spent most of the days curled into a tight ball on the sofa or if my moods became too much Matt would send me off to bed, out of the way of the children.
“Mummy has a poorly head at the minute” we would tell them. Yes I sure did have a poorly head as now I was starting to hear, see and smell things that nobody else could.
The first time was a hedgehog running around the kitchen floor. It was not there. I could see it and I jumped around, but nobody else could see it. Then came the hamster in the Christmas tree, but it was the men that scared me the most. The dark shadow outlines of men walking up my garden path and peering at me through the windows. I bought net curtains to block them out, but still they appeared.
I could no longer go for a bath alone, asking Matt or one of the kids to come and sit with me. Just as I would slide under the red hot water that I was still using to burn my skin I would hear the heavy footsteps approaching. I would see the dark shadow under the door and the handle would turn. The shadow would come towards me and then push my head under the water. I would come too gasping for breath and I would be under the water, but nobody but me was in the bathroom. Was someone trying to kill me or was I trying to kill myself?
I would smell wet dogs, it used to drive me insane and I would scrub the house top to bottom but could never get rid of the smell.
I would wake at 4am and hear laughing and giggling and many times did I get out of bed and march into the children’s bedroom ready to tell them off. Yet everyone in the house was sleeping, the laughing continued inside my head.
Sleeping had become a huge issue and I was prescribed sleeping pills, despite being pregnant the GP knew I had become desperate. The first pills he prescribed were amazing, my mood rocketed towards the clouds and for days I would bounce around, I didn’t need sleep, they kept me living in cuckoo land with the fairies.
The health visitor advised I try something else so I agreed; these had no effect on me at all. I could still not sleep. The moment my head hit the pillow and the house was in silence the voices would start. I could never understand what they were saying, I can only describe it as 10 different conversations taking part at one time and I would only catch the odd words.
I shook my head, slapped it, even banged it off the wall over and over stop, just make it stop. But it didn’t stop. Even today my head is filled with a constant buzzing sound when I am alone and there is no noise. It does still keep me awake the odd nights.
I confided in my CPN that I was hearing, seeing and smelling things and she told me it was pretty normal. Normal? How the hell is that normal? I was freaking out big time. I was suffering from a form of psychosis and was experiencing hallucinations.
I would later learn that psychosis was at its worst when I was over tired or over stressed. I still see the odd man, they still haunt me but not so often and I know now that they are in my head and not real. It still frightens me, but I catch my breath and tell myself over and over that I have to slow down; I am over tired and need to rest.
I welcome you all to join me in my journey of self-discovery and face with me the obstacles I have overcome and still face. As I share for the first time my incredible life story.
Chapter 1 – Living With Bipolar – My Life Story
Chapter 2 – Living With Bipolar – Please Let Him Love Me
Chapter 5 – Living With Bipolar – Bullies, Shrinks & CPN’s