Back when….life was just wonderful. I was batshit crazy, but had no idea that I was! So, in my happy little world of talking to strangers, making friends with arbitrary people I decided were ‘great’ by the clothes they wore, whilst waiting for the train, all seemed perfectly normal for me. Life was FUN. Well I was having a ball going shopping in my P.J’s, singing down the aisles TO the food, and I thought everyone looking strangely at me, found me ‘interesting ‘! ‘Why did they all look so glum?’ I wondered.
Ive always had a loud personality. I’ve always had loads of friends who I’d entertain with toast and salt, because, to me, that was….well it’s what we ate, whilst sitting on the floor in my lounge, instead of on the sofas listening to loud music. Some of my friends thought me eccentric, bold, fun, fearless, and to a large extent, I was all of those. (Or so I believed). I mean, who entertains on the floor with salt and toast? I ROCKED!
Then, my FUN side met anger. I am not sure if anger happens along due to a trigger of sorts. Before anger introduced herself to me, HAPPY was my companion. Or, was I not actually happy, but on a serious manic for a couple of years? In denial of REALITY?
Before the ‘label, BIPOLAR ‘ my world worked for me. Until I started losing friends and making enemies at a fast rate. Never ever did it enter my head, that I was just ‘too much’, and when ANGER came and joined the party, people fled! I was mortified, not understanding why the friends I’d grown up with, no longer wanted anything to do with me? So, as a coping mechanism (which I only realised later that’s what it was) , I told myself, that I had outgrown them, and they were the shits, not me. I was FUN, right?
THEN I did something, that landed me in a psychiatrists office, and BOOM! My world changed forever. My FUN was given a sickness label. Turns out that I’d been Alice in wonderland, all this time. My head was so far down the rabbit hole, only marching tin men made any sense to me. So what did a LABEL do to me?
First of all, FUN fled, replaced with confusion, sadness, and then a deep depression joined my new party of no friends. I was sick. Flatly, without tone, my reality of being FUN in my own little world, collapsed. Could this be right? How can a dr. Label you mentally ill, when all you really are, is a little different to others? How does ‘different and eccentric ‘ equate to SICK? Well, what a BIPOLAR doesn’t see, is the ‘normal ‘ parameters that we are supposed to behave within. Who defines ‘normal ‘ anyway? What IS ‘normal ‘? Well…I said ‘such and such ‘ to ‘so and so’ , and it’s not MY fault that she found it offensive! Turns out, yes, actually, it IS my fault. Not because I’m a horrible person, but because I’m BIPOLAR! (Whew that’s a load off, at least I’m not a horrible person)…….well……actually, when you have BIPOLAR, you most definitely CAN be a horrible person. Especially, if you’ve taken anger in as a friend. The saving grace, is that everything you do that others may deem shitty, really isn’t your fault. Unless you refuse meds, drink copious amounts of alcohol, and blame THEM for all of your woes.
So, does being labelled, destroy one? I believe in a way it does. Everything you do, think or say, from the day you are labelled, you’ll re-run in your mind, over and over, until you get to the point of total and utter confusion about whether what you did or said, was wrong or not, and even then, you won’t find an answer to satisfy you. Now GUILT has joined the party. Oh joy, what used to be a cool bunch of friends, sitting on the floor eating toast and salt, listening to loud music, has turned into a nightmare of self hate, guilt, depression and confusion. You’ll no longer sing when shopping, always aware, that singing loudly while shopping, is not ‘normal ‘, according to the dr and the label.
You will become VERY aware of the parameters, and when you forget them by mistake, you’ll apologise over and over again, desperate to not be seen as SICK, and hoping like hell, that your friends who’ve long since fled, will come back, forgive you, because you are, after all BIPOLAR. The FUN has a label, and it’s not FUN!
The meds killed the mania, and now, if I have a day that doesn’t find me depressed, I grab onto that moment, with all I have, because, God only knows, when HAPPY will visit again. BUT! Aha! To my delight, I’ve come to know, that almost every intelligent, famous or artistic person, since before Van Gogh, was or is BIPOLAR.
Does this comfort me? NO not really, because the demons in my head, that I partied with, calling them FUN, have gone, leaving their enemy SAD with me.
I think I’d rather be CRAZY and HAPPY, than SICK and ‘SANE’. Although, after recognising what my BIPOLAR did to others, hmmmmm…..I’d like to settle for CRAZY and SANE.