Step 1: Make it.

Today I finally worked up the nerve, after thinking about working up the nerve for over a year, to ask my psychiatrist about what "family planning" may entail in my particular case.  I asked her if she had guided bipolar patients through pregnancy before; she has, which is a relief.  I don't need to change psychiatrists to be able to see myself through.

She also assured me that the type of medication I'm on won't require me to be unmedicated prior to conception.  Once I know I'm pregnant, we can proceed to taper off at that point.  It won't interfere with development, and the medications I'm on aren't ones of serious worry.  This leaves only perhaps high-risk OBGYN visits.

But really nothing about my oversight will be changing.  Just adding visits in addition to a doctor I already trust.  She frankly said just call me once you know.  I'll know second.  Well, third.  Your husband will be second.

Not having an indefinite period of being unmedicated is quite a weight off my shoulders.  There's a small window of fetal development that I can't interfere in, and then it sounds like I can go back on things once the fetus is functioning well.  I can hold out through it or go back on.

So this leaves only postpartum issues as the main worry.  I get to the other side, and worry about remaining stable then.

I can do this.  It seems more manageable.  I could always do it.  I'm stronger now . . . everyone says so . . . I'm 9.5 years past that place . . . can I maintain that as the worst I ever have?

{"Alone", Unknown Artist.}