I was going to do a post about my snoring like a lumberjack, the amusing tale of when I had the sleep study done, my embarrassment over my nighttime noises–and, I’m too low to be even slightly amusing, I’m afraid.
I am bi-polar. As I said before, this doesn’t mean I have homes at both ends of the globe, it means I suffer from manic/depressive behavior, which can rule my life. Hell, who am I kidding, it does rule my life. I am well medicated, thankyouverymuch, and manage to live a fairly normal.ish life these days, but, it’s taken years. It has blossomed in my past–forcing me to not be able to leave my house for a long, long time, I blame it for my OCD tendencies and anxieties, it can make me weep for no reason in the middle of the day in a patch of sunlight or spend too much money.
Being bi-polar can keep me awake for days if I allow it to happen, by not taking my medications. The highs are so tempting, so full of color and sparkle that you feel that is where you are supposed to be–up there in the clouds, laughing and enjoying life. Unfortunately, the down side is hitting the ground hard, finding you’ve gone over budget in everything, in a fight with your money manager (I was smart enough to get one of those), ignoring the needs of your children then over compensating. Getting that balance is so difficult, there are days I spend each minute struggling to maintain a steady course.
I am easily wounded. I vacillate between worrying if I’ve offended and not caring. Mostly, I worry. I stress if I’ve crossed lines I don’t know exist that others see. I am a social dunce. I am bright, but, have little ambition. I can be amazingly funny, and not remember a thing I said at a party the next day–my mania drains me completely and it also drains those around me. A friend once said, “I love going places with you, no one is funnier, but, by the time you leave, I can’t move from energy drain being around you.”. I’m not sure it’s a compliment.
I’ve gone through a ton of medicinal cocktails and have had my stints in hospitals. I’m not proud of that, but, I’m not ashamed–it is who I am. I can say that my disease has created children that are compassionate, kind, understanding, dear and patient. They have their moments of anger at me, I’m not going to pretend otherwise, still, in dealing with me, they’ve learned people have situations they cannot control, and therefore, they are far more willing to try and comprehend rather than judge.
I worry I’ve passed along these genes of manic/depression along with brown eyes and curly hair. My symptoms started when I was in high school…so far, neither of my two twentysomething children display either side of the spectrum, so, I may have worried for naught. Still, one never knows, and, I struggle to deal with the guilt should it pass along to grandchildren. It would be my fault if they suffered as I have with this.
There are times I’m still not willing to discuss publicly, even here among my ‘Hood…times of deep depression and how low I was when I divorced. I think Richard Fariña said it best in the title of his novel, Been Down So Long it Looks Like Up to Me. Times of not sleeping for days and doing crazy things… although I am proud to say I never did anything I was morally ashamed of doing, and that says quite a bit.
So, right now, I’m down for a bit. I’m laying low, trying to be semi-amusing in comments and failing miserably. Hang in there, please. I’ll be back soon enough, and, not too far out of the zone.