Though one of my reasons for starting this blog was to be open and honest about my bipolar depression, I haven’t touched on that subject for quite awhile. Mostly because I’ve been doing well.
In fact, lately, I’ve been feeling great. Super-great. Super-super-great.
So good that I’ve been “treating” myself to the $20 this-or-that several times a week.
So good that I want to drink more (than usual), eat more (than usual), do everything more (than usual).
So good that I have about 3,249 ideas for blog posts, but I’m having a hard time focusing on just one long enough to complete it. But, hey, the ideas keep coming!
So good that my sleeping pills aren’t really working anymore. But it doesn’t really matter; there’s way too much going on to sleep. TWITCH.
Hello, manic phase. It’s been too long.
This is it. You can’t see it. You probably don’t notice much of any change at all, unless you’re as close to me as, say, my husband. The fancy name is "hypomania."
But it’s here. Which means at some time in the future, it won’t be here. And then, I’ll crash. Physically, because my body won’t be able to keep up with the sleepless nights. Mentally because feeling this up isn’t natural, and the pendulum will swing in the opposite direction.
One of the scary parts of bipolar depression is that certain parts of a manic phase can feel so fucking good. Hell, yeah who doesn’t want to feel super-productive, and super-creative, and super-awesome-and-worthy-and-capable? And really, you don’t need sleep to be a functional human being, so say hello to all-nighters and finding that 25th hour in the day!
And when you go through a manic phase like this, to go back even to normal - to your normal amount of productivity and creativity and capabilities - feels like a failure. If I’m able to do XYZ some of the time, but I can’t do it all of the time, it must be because I’m not trying hard enough. And feeling like a failure is enough to catapult you straight into depression, if you hadn’t plunged there already.
I know this. I can talk about this because I am medicated enough to be self-aware, to understand what is happening to me. And while I can’t predict when I’ll crash, I’ll be alert to a downswing. And I’m working with my doctor to alter my medication to help me through this period. To bring me down, while lessening the crash, if not eliminating the crash all together.
Mania is a lot of different things to a lot of different people. I'm lucky I've caught this now, before the mania gets worse or the depression kicks in.
And I'll be ok.