Pre-Pregnancy Month One Review
As soon as my husband and I were married, we would begin project “Get Pregnant.” We couldn’t wait, but as excited as we were we were just as nervous. We wanted to do things the right way without jeopardizing my mental and emotional stability.
When I discussed finally getting pregnant with my psychiatrist, we decided that the best plan of action to maintain my current state of being was to do an initial blood draw to test my lamotrigine levels before actually stopping the birth control hormones. She explained that the body processes medication differently when using an oral contraceptive.
This blood test would give us a base to determine the lamotrigine effects as time passed. My lamotrigine level, with the contraceptive, came back 3.9 mcg/mL*, almost perfect.
Now that the wedding had come and gone our mission began. Immediately after stopping my birth control there was seemingly no change or interruption to my mood. But, as time went on, I began to feel a little more irritable, and the bipolar fairies seemed to be visiting more often.
One night, after a series of emotional ‘discussions’ with my husband, I admitted that these more frequent outbursts were possibly due to my change in hormone levels, and how the lamotrigine was now being processed. When he said that he agreed and that he was waiting for me to realize the change, I felt more alone than I had in a long while. It felt as though he had teamed up with the bipolar fairies and he was just waiting for me to notice.
I suppose, looking back, we hadn’t had the most favorable experiences when it came to discussing my medicines and mood changes. I suppose I couldn’t really blame him? That night I took some time alone to be with my thoughts. I practiced positive self-talk and focused on the reality of the situation. My bipolar disorder was coming in sharp, quick peaks and valleys more frequently than I have come accustomed to. Would this be a reality until we get pregnant and have a baby? Was this worth it? Deep in my heart I know that it is.
Now, after the first month of “Get Pregnant” has come to an end without success in completing the mission, we strive on. I continue to practice positive self-talk and give myself a little slack.
Tomorrow I will get another blood draw to determine whether I am in need of a dosage change. But until then, this is my bipolar disorder, this is my life.
*Standard Range is 4.0-18.0 mcg/mL