Start Again

“There are millions and millions of people with mental problems.  They work regular jobs, irregular jobs, they work at home, they don’t work, they’re married or single, they have kids or don’t, they do laundry and fall in love and have opinions and grieve their losses and, if they’re lucky, take their meds.  That’s what I’m learning.  I am a person with mental illness. So it takes some extra effort.  So sometimes it’s debilitating.  But now that I’m learning to manage it, it’s becoming not my entire life but simply a part of how I live, something people around me live with as well, something I can accept.  I have to, that’s the only way this works.”             —  “Madness: A Bipolar Life” by Marya Hornbacher

This extended quote gets right to the heart of where I am right now.  As someone with Bipolar Disorder, which appears to have been put in my rear view mirror for the time being, I am trying to figure out where I go from here.  What I need to do is figure out how to stop being afraid of things I perceive as being outside my comfort zone.  I’m not sure how to do that, if any of you have some suggestions I would really appreciate it.  Some of the questions I ask are:

Can I get a job?
Can I handle a career?
How about a significant other, or a family?
What happens when I fall apart?
Where does it all go when the only thing I can focus on is me?

defeat is just an
opportunity to
start again

I don’t know where I heard that but it seems like a good motto.  I think I’ll take it as my own.  Now I need to do some serious work on me.  I hope nothing gets in the way.

Implosion

As I analyze the events leading up to the break, I come to understand, more and more, why my big implosion pushed so many people away.  There was a lot of lying going on, mostly by me.  I was having a manic episode that lasted quite some time.  I alienated a lot of people that used to be my friends.  I was doing what I thought I needed to do to stay afloat.  Everything I was doing was lighting little fuses which would inevitably combine into one gigantic one.  Then there was the break and I imploded on myself, the manic episode turned into a Psychotic Break.  Everyone else saw that they had something in common, my lies, and started comparing notes.  When they did that they discovered that I was different to everyone, that no one knew who I really was.  That was when they all moved away.  It was my doing.  It was my disease’s doing.  I really had no control over it.  I’m not using this as an excuse, I’m simply stating a fact.  This disease I have, Bipolar Disorder (BPD), played a large role in the loss of friends and career.  Any forgiveness I ask for or give, in that part of my life, must be seen in that light.  But, I am ultimately responsible for my actions.