Mania & Sobriety

I don’t know why, but MY DEPRESSION HAS FINALLY LIFTED! I’m sure it’ll be back, of course, but it’s been such a wonderful week since I last felt sad. I’ve been mad, happy, content, even giddy! It’s emotions I forgot existed. It’s a brightness in my life that I had forgotten how to feel. It’s been really nice.

With my new mood are lifestyle changes. I’m reading more (currently got three books going), I’ve developed a weird affinity for Electronica for some reason, I’ve been trying to draw again, and for the first time in months I’m sober. Not to say that I was going home and getting totally wrecked alone, because that’s inaccurate. I did develop some bad daily habits to drag myself out of the deepest depths of the blue, though. I am not a fan of anything I use to improve my mood on the daily, whether it be drinking, smoking, binging, or some new self-destructive habit I can come up with. I’d been trying NOT to do those things and trying NOT to immediately go to bed when I went home, and one day last week I was just… not sad anymore.

I was just angry for days. It’s not really unusual, because most of the time my mania is extremely narcissistic rage, but I noticed that I was rapid cycling, and then the rage just stuck around for a couple of days. Being angry sounds awful, but it was really a welcome relief from the blue. Red is, at least, a different kind of oppressive. Plus I got that nice top-of-the-world feeling! Because why just be mad when you can have self-righteous indignation? Eventually the rage would lift and I’d be in the white for a while, and after a bit the white just staid.

Mania, even hypo-mania, comes with its own problems. I’ve been binging. It’s happy binge eating, at least, and I’m enjoying all the Chipotle I cram into my face, but it’s not any healthier than depressed binging aside from knowing that I’m not going to try and purge it later. I’m sure I’ve gained weight from it. I’ve been trying not to spend money since I bought my brightly colored dresses, but I took a bunch of books and video games to 2nd & Charles to sell, and ended up going home with twice as much as I got for them in books (horror anthologies for Halloween). I have virtually NO attention span, so watching TV is out. In general, I feel better, but I’m not really LIVING better. Lol. Although, it’s nice not to sleep 12 hours a day and spend the rest at work.

I dunno what triggered the change, but I’m grateful for it. I also hope the inevitable crash isn’t really bad… and that I get some time in the white before nose-diving deep into the blue again.

This afternoon, work has put me into the red, but just a little… in the pink maybe… I’m mad, but it’s with reason, and I’m not raging… just irritated mostly.

Still… it’s nice to be sober… and it’s nice to not be sad. ^_^

Now if I can just wrangle in the manic habits, I could maybe be a really real human being for a while. Lol.

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Dresses

Oh look. Pictures of me being depressed.

I have developed this habit of buying clothes ONLY for work, so I have nothing to wear when I go out anymore. That doesn’t sound like it would be a really real problem, but it is. You never consider how much what you wear reveals about yourself. My wardrobe being catered exclusively around work and nothing being something that I’d wear to a social event really shows how much I’ve forsaken social life. (Imma totally derail now… enjoy or skip down to ANYWAYS…)

I try to be social, but it ends up so disappointing.

For example, this past Friday I tried to hook up with Bird. She’d had a terrifying experience on the highway and wanted to go out and celebrate being alive… She turned down all my suggestions for actual fun things to do, and we ended up just getting a drink at a bar we don’t go to much “for something different.” I suggested everything from a local goth night, to crashing a senior citizen prom, to just trying a new venue with some different kind of music… but as much as she says she’d like to do more than the rest of our friends, who LIVE at karaoke and do literally nothing else, she doesn’t really want to try anything new either. On top of that, I tried to plan for her being late, because she’s always fucking late, and I was still there for about an hour alone before she showed up. So… all together I call the night a bust. We didn’t even really have anything to talk about since neither of us seem to do much at this point. I think we are both horrifically depressed… and depressed people do not lift each other up, but rather we drag each other down.

I was supposed to go to a birthday party Saturday night, but hurt my back doing yard work and backed out. I made sure to make it to a move with Bird on Sunday morning. She wanted to see Annabelle: Creation, and I was down. SO… I get her to confirm movie time and location, but just as I’m leaving my house she’s like…

“Are we still doing this?”
“Unless you suddenly changed your mind.”
“No, I’m just double-checking.”

::15 mins goes by and I’m outside the theater::

“But what about your back?”
“It hurts but all we’re going to do is sit.”
“Okay.”

And then she showed up like 20 mins later, right when the movie was starting.

I try really hard not to take shit personally, but if you wanna bail, just fucking bail. I hate people who vacillate way more than people who bail. At least I know when someone bails that I suddenly have free time. It’s still a little inconvenient, but at least it’s definitive so I can plan something else. Toss always being late into that mix and I’m just a weird mixture of hurt and angry that you’re wasting my time.

I was trying to wait for her in the parking lot, but I ended up just telling her where I was sitting and going into the theater because I stopped caring if she even showed up. I was there. I was irritable. I was seeing the movie with or without her… just cuz I was there.

I love Bird to death. She’s a great person, and I know she’s got her own shit she’s dealing with, but I just hate trying to do stuff with her. I just end up feeling bad because she vacillates on plans and then shows up late. So me, miss prompt-and-requiring-validation, feels like I’m not worth hammering down plans with, and that she’s not valuing my time… and she’s not valuing my time… and I find that mean… and the fact she’s one of two friends I legit see regularly really just compounds how meaningless I perceive that I must be to her, whether it’s true or not.

ANYWAYS I BOUGHT SOME DRESSES. I was going to go to Torrid on my way home from work one night this week, but got a better deal online and picked up six dresses there… and then I got three from Maurice’s that are plainer and cheaper, but still nice looking. I tried really hard to pick things I could, and WOULD, wear somewhere that isn’t work. I tried to throw some actual personality into it. It’s hard… because I don’t even know what I’d like to wear anymore…

I just use clothes to cover this terrible body I have, and that’s not fashion. I’m not expressing myself; I’m just hiding something I refuse to embrace. It contributes to my bad feels… I would really like to like myself again. I did for a while there, and it was great. I dunno what’s changed now… but I don’t like not liking myself.

So… gonna work on that, I guess.

I’m Back To Blue

I cancelled my shrink appointment in October, so I’m definitely on my own for mood management again. I hate the med trials, and the very nonchalant way shrinks are just like,

“You have to try shit till it works… that’s all we can do.”

Why is that all they can do? If I have a lung infection they don’t give me random meds until something works. They isolated the likely cause of of lung infections and prescribe antibiotics accordingly. So if I’m having symptoms, why can’t they take those symptoms and give me the BEST option for the most likely culprit of my symptoms?

I’m sad.
You’re bipolar.

Maybe, but I’m only worried about the sad?

We’re gonna treat the mania.

I don’t care about the mania.
Nah, we’re gonna treat the mania.

Will that help the sad?

In theory it might. If not, we’ll add more meds later.

I don’t want more meds. Can we just treat the sad?

No, we’re going to treat the mania and later we can treat the sad.

BUT I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT THE MANIA!!! I JUST DON’T WANT TO BE SAD ANYMORE GOD DAMN IT! WHY WON’T YOU LISTEN TO ME?!

This is why we have to treat the mania… you’re irritable.

Literally my experience with the psychiatric community.

I sometimes worry about my future, as the only thing I can predict about it is that I’ll think about suicide. I already do that a lot, so it’s not a far fetched idea to think that will persist. I worry about reaching a place where I’m in between pets, mom has died, and I feel alone… cuz that’s when it could definitely happen. I don’t have a resilient force of will with suicide, it’s just always been inconvenient. If it were suddenly less inconvenient, I’m not sure what I’d do. I only tried the once as a teenager, and that was a complete failure I never tried to repeat again.

I dunno. I just feel hopeless about everything. I wanna move us to Oregon for a change of scenery, but I have no reason to think that will improve my depression. I’ll just be depressed around a lot of trees instead of in the ‘burbs of Denver. It’s worth a shot, I guess. It’s got Mothership motivated to try and get shit done, at least. A light at the end of the tunnel… just hope it’s not a train.

Aside from being really tired and crying in the bathroom at work, I seem pretty normal, though. I’m even supposed to go see that guy again on Saturday to get my bangles back from him. He’s really nice. I’m still sad that isn’t gonna work out. I don’t really think that subjecting a normal human being to my bipolar sociopathic ass is really good for either of us, though. People like me are what Lifetime movies are trying to warn you about.

Randomly, I keep thinking about my ex… the one I’d like to drag into the street an beat to death before setting his body on fire… I’m not sure why. It’s been almost 8 years since the breakup, and I’ve ever dated since then, but I can’t let it go. I still wanna hurt him. I guess that’s from the lack of meds. All the emotions that swirl underneath my calm demeanor are bubbling over cuz they can. It’s just a random thing to feel so angry about this much time later. Some hurts never go away, I guess….

Anyways, I’m depressed…. but I think it’s okay right now.

I’m gonna try to start hitting the gym… I hate the gym, but I do sleep better if I can get all the rage out… and I’d like to lose some weight if that’s possible (like a whole person worth of weight, tbh).

I’ve been awake too long.

Do things that make you feel good until they don’t make you feel good anymore.

Wallow in misery.

Repeat.

Try not to think about the fact this is how drug addicts think.

I could be a drug addict.

I wonder how long they would make me feel good?

Not long enough, if my drug addict friends are anything to go by.

What makes humans beings happy anymore?

Anything?

Getting Dragged Down

So I’m Bipolar. Amongst other things.
Let’s start there.

You may have heard the phrase “trigger” being thrown around the internet by people. Usually, and I don’t care who hates me for saying it, this term is used when someone says something that offends another person on the internet, or brings up something that reminds someone of something they’re trying to forget. It’s kind of a bullshit term for, “I can’t handle this, but I don’t have the common sense to get the fuck off the computer.”

As a person with mental illness, well out of my teen years, I’m not really into that scene. If you say trigger to me, I stop talking to you. I can’t even deal with your bullshit. I have my own, and I don’t run around trying to tell people not to say or do things just because they make me feel like I’m full of worms and decayed flesh. That’s not real life. Real life is a word stabbing pain into your gut like a knife, and you swallowing hard before plastering a smile across your face anyways as people laugh at something that brings you excruciating pain. Real life is getting up and dragging your ass out of bed even though your whole being is begging you to just lie there in bed until you die. Real life is feeling your world crashing down around you, and still just going about your life like any other person. Real life is going home and drowning your pain in some vice of your choice, and still getting up the next day like it never happened. That’s life.

When I say trigger. I mean a trigger. I mean that in the midst of all this fake living I do for the sake of appearance and normality, something has managed to work its way deep into the recesses of my inner being and poke at just the right spot to cause my chest to cave in. I mean that I’ve managed to crash through the floor of my depression, and that I now have to spend some time wallowing around in the black ink of despair for a while, all while maintaining the best outward expression of normality that I can. It’s quite exhaustive.

My trigger, more often than not, always comes from my mother. That’s not to say that my mother is abusive, or that she sets unrealistic expectations for me, or any of that. My mom’s great… But she is horrifically depressed. Most days I can more or less brush it off, but sometimes it just eats at me like a disease. I mean any conversation with her feels like she’s not even remotely listening to me, which bothers me immensely, and any time I ask her about things she puts such a grey cast on it that I can feel myself getting pulled down with her.

If you don’t know, there are levels of to mood… I arrange them by color.
The white zone is mania. I love the white zone. I can get so much done… I’m irrationally happy… I am just excitement and awesome and life is grand.
The red zone is manic anger… I like that one, too, but it’s because I come up with the cruelest revenge plots… I don’t usually get to act on them, though, because I burn through the adrenaline too fast.
The blue zone is contentment. That’s the moment when I wake up feeling refreshed, and I look around at my dogs and just smile to myself and spend all day reading and sipping tea, and everything is just kind of okay. I don’t get to spend a lot of time here.
The beige zone is what I imagine most people live in. I’m not up, or down. I’m just kinda here. It’s where usually am when I go out with friends, because I like going out, but I don’t usually like whatever my friends might have dragged me to.
The gray zone is where my mother lives. It’s sad, but it’s not bawling or anything. You just feel shit, and you enjoy nothing, and even if you think you might enjoy something, a piece of your brain kicks on that reminds you why you can’t enjoy this moment… I don’t spend much time here, myself… instead…I end up in the black. That’s usually a term for not being in debt, but I’m crazy in debt… For me in the black refers to the void. When I get dragged down, you can see nail tracks in the grey as I speed past it down into the black. It’s where my soul goes to die. I don’t like it there, as you might imagine. It’s like my brain is stuck in a tar pit. Everything I try to do to get out makes the experience worse. I get dragged farther and farther down until I can’t even see a glimmer of the white zone anymore. It’s usually when I curl up somewhere (the shower is a great curling spot) and just try not to feel anything.

Feeling nothing is better than the black. Or maybe it’s part of it. I’m never sure. I just know that if I can manage to feel nothing, I can resurface somewhere in the gray or beige zone and work from there. The important thing is to get out of the black… to find some way to rise up out of the darkness and not kill myself or something equally as irrational and stupid (because all that shit makes perfect sense in the black).

At work or anywhere that isn’t home, however, I can’t curl in a ball somewhere and wait it out. No, instead I have to figure out some way to claw my way out of the black without losing my composure… without anyone noticing. Some attempts are better than others. Sometimes I can sit at my desk, take a Xanax, and listen to music until I’m kind of okay. Sometimes I end up snapping at people. Sometimes I end up hiding in the bathroom until I’m sure I’m not going to lose it. None of these things are particularly effective. I’m going to be in the gray or the black all day. There’s no way to pull myself out, because I have nowhere to reset.

Today that overwhelming feeling of of black has decided that I’m not going to eat. Fortunately, I’m fat from all the binge eating I usually do when I’m upset, so I won’t actually suffer for it, but it does give me a queasy feeling that makes me irrationally sad. Also, I’m cancelling things I love… I might re-up later, but when I get like this I just want to get rid of everything I own or do, and just stay in my house forever…. never seeing anyone, never leaving, just me and the dogs… maybe order some books from the internet to occupy my mind… It’s a bad feeling. I don’t like it. I don’t like this side of me. I don’t like the monster I turn into when my moods change.

Werewolf

I’ve been told that his is what it’s like to watch my moods change.

Nothing’s going to make this right, right now. Maybe when I get home eight or so hours from now, then it will all be fine. Maybe I can crawl into bed and sleep it off, or cry it out, or throw something at a wall and watch the shattered pieces as a metaphor for my insides…