I live in the Willamette Valley with my wonderful and long-suffering husband Dustin, my smart, crazy daughter Penelope, and my stalwart little baby, Malcolm. Most of my days are spend reviewing software, writing reviews on said software, chasing my daughter from one end of the house to another, and caring for my son, who was born with multiple congenital heart defects. When I get the chance, I like to nerd out with Dustin and watch episodes of science fiction dramas from the ’90s or reread one of my dog-eared Agatha Christie novels. My literary heroes are Dorothy Sayers, Anne Lamott, David Sedaris, and Mike Nelson (yes, you heard me, the head writer from MST 3K). I like dogs and not cats. I’m afraid of spiders and fish and chalkboards. I have never seen Top Gun. Anything else you want to know?
I also struggle daily with the stigma and drudgery of Bipolar Disorder. Since my official diagnosis in 2006, I have tried every treatment available (okay, not electroshock therapy, but almost every treatment), ingested every mood-altering drug every invented (except Prozac, oddly enough), and seen over a dozen mental health specialists. I have been hospitalized, done several outpatient programs, and suffered through periodic lithium blood tests. I have lived the Bipolar life. I still live it, everyday. I don’t speak for the whole mentally ill community. I can only write from my own experience, and try to be as honest as possible. This blog is my small attempt to strip this terrible illness of its power, reach out to others who suffer, and give a little perspective to those who don’t.
Julie Titterington Johnston