Being bipolar has its moments I suppose. There is a certain joy in being what we in the business call high as a kite because those are the days that I can literally fly to the moon and back. They are the days that I am present. They are the days the house gets spring cleaned and the children get a mother that is engaged. They are the days my husband gets some loving.
Then there are the normal days. The days when I am not all the way engaged, although I can be for brief moments. These are the days when reading a book and getting lost in another world trumps most everything else in my life. These are the half-assed days. I certainly am capable of cleaning, of being a mother but there is still a wall, a distance between me and the real world. Almost as if the sun is simply too bright in my world.
Then there are the days that one understands the insane. The days where the ability to get out of bed is so difficult as to not make it worth the effort. The days when I sit in the kitchen and type this post rather than be with my children in the other room. The days when the mere idea of another human’s touch makes my skin crawl. The days when I can push my self into society but the falseness of my smile and my words are so stringent as to make me cringe.
Then there are the days that I am angry or the destructive emotions reigning through my veins are so potent. The days when for no easy reason I hate it all – the world, the Gods, the husband, the home, and of course, my place in all of it. These are the days it is best that I don’t talk on the phone. These are the days it is best that I literally bury myself so deep into my own mind that others are safe.
Then there are the thousand other days that don’t fit into any category. The days when I switch from being happy to sad faster than you can say just about any word in the English language. Or the days that I literally look like a spaced out cadaver; without movement, without life in her eyes, without the basic movements of breathing.
This is a sample of my life. A sample of what my husband and my children have to deal with each and every day. This is a world my love ones live despite the fact that I take my medicine each and every day; despite the fact that I see a professional and awarded doctor each month to regulate my meds and my brain.
If it were just me I probably wouldn’t have anything to write about. I wouldn’t have anything to compare my day to day ups and downs with. I would go about my life strangely drawn to those that would hurt me one day and be a complete stranger to my own self the next. I would exist only on paper.
But it isn’t just me. Somewhere along the way I decided – in all my glorious wisdom – to have a husband, to have a family. To create for myself what I had once hoped would be the joy in this upside down world. I probably decided this was a great idea during one of my higher periods. And don’t get me wrong – I refuse for one second to live without my children now that I have them. They are the often the few moments of real, full throttle joy that I can get in this life.
I am not sure why I was given this disease; I long ago stopped looking for answers. I am not sure why someone decided that I was strong enough to handle a disease of the mind and still have enough of a fight to remain a cognizant member of society. I am not sure who thought it was a good idea to force a person with bipolar to continually confront not only the flaws and weaknesses in ones own self, but to confront it in others. I am not sure who decided that I would fight a disease without a cure, without much compassion, and certainly with very little understanding in a world that often is on the opposite spectrum of whatever I feel. I sincerely hope that next time I come back as a beetle.
And it doesn’t matter how many times I write about what I am going through. It doesn’t matter how many times I try and explain. It doesn’t matter how many times I try and fake my way through smiles, through patience, even through normalcy, there is a literal void between those who can understand and try to handle this disease and those who simply want to run as far away as possible.
It is lonely having a disease of the mind. It is lonely because no matter how many people “love” you or how many people try and understand, what goes on in ones own mind – even those who have healthy minds – is very, very private. It is the manner of the disease; it is even the muscle of the beast. There is no way to fully explain what is in anyone’s mind – and there is no way to step in someone’s shoes even for a moment. It is a cute little concept but trying to understand the truth in my mind full of lies, hatred, disappointment, fear, shyness, complications, intelligence, and even the misleading moments of purposeful confusion is too difficult for even the most learned of men. It is one of those spheres that is completely and totally foreign to all those who attempt to become one with the subject.
I was born with this disease. I was born with brown hair and brown eyes. I was born without the gene, the mark, the little piece that gives self-confidence, even self-esteem. I was born with ten fingers and ten toes. I was born without the ability to know who and what I will be tomorrow. And I was born with the sheer disappointment in the person that I am. It is a horrible feeling to know that no matter how much I want to be one thing – I will always be another.
I will never be a self-made woman. I will never be a put on my boots and go dancing kind of gal. I will never be a person who can be greater than life imagined for me. And there are days when I want to kick out at the truth. And there are days when I want to scream at my lack of destiny. And there are days I want to simply give up.
The joys of being upside down isn’t in the day, but in the single second that comes every decade or two.