Mother I tried please believe me, I’m doing the best that I can.
I’m ashamed of the things I’ve been put through, I’m ashamed of the person I am.
Isolation, isolation, isolation.
But if you could just see the beauty, these things I could never describe,
These pleasures a wayward distraction, this is my one lucky prize.
Isolation, isolation, isolation, isolation, isolation. (Ian Curtis, Joy Division)
I’m not feeling depressed or particularly sad today, just isolated and angry. How many good people have I pushed away over the course of my life? I can’t even begin to count. Part of it was a fear, an overwhelming, paralyzing, bone deep fear.
What if I get to know you and like you and then you slam me down hard? Safer to stay at a distance. Even worse, what if you get to know me and like me and then I kick you to the curb one day when I’m out of my mind with agitation. I don’t know how or why I’ve lived like this for so long. I think another part of this comes from feeling like damaged goods. “I’m a loony toon; you better stay away from me for your own good.”
I know it’s ridiculous to feel this way, but that doesn’t help much. It’s like having a broken leg, you know it is broken but it still hurts like a bitch. Every time phone rings I almost jump out of my skin and think, “Oh God, what now? What loose string have I left untied? What did I do that I need to apologize for or explain?”
Regaining a semblance of sanity and balance is a good thing. But, when I look behind me and see the of destruction I wove while in and out of my mind, it’s like looking at a aerial footage of the path of a tornado.
Yea, yea, I didn’t do as much damage as a tornado, but not by much, at least that’s what it feels like. Would it have different if I had been diagnosed with bipolar years or decades ago? How can I know that? Would I have made different decisions? Chosen a different path for my life? Hiding behind the skirts of my wackier family members it was always so easy to wave a banner and say “See, I’m the normal one, taint nuthin wrong with me!”
Some part of me knew something was not right in my brain. I guess I just wasn’t ready to face it head on. Who is to say anything would be different? Maybe it would have been worse? Maybe I would have used mental illness as a crutch to excuse myself from inexcusable behavior.
Today I go to see my physio-key-atrist. I’m expecting it to go something like this. “OK, we’ve abated the crisis and stopped the bleeding, the hypomanic mixed states, but what now? Where do I go from here?” I don’t know how or what a normal stable state feels. I feel like a blindfolded painter expected to draw a landscape I’ve never seen. I just don’t know where or what to do next.
Tuesday April 3rd, 2011 was an interesting day, if you define interesting as “oh God, oh God, I’m gonna die.” Extremely glad I lived through it, along with 6,371,773 of my closest friends. That’s the population of the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex as of the 2010 census. Most of the time I love living in North Texas. It’s just those pesky 2 or 3 days a year that get so wild and crazy you need a change of pants.
The weatherman said “chance of storms, some severe.” Yea yea, how many times have we heard that? It might hail, rain, or it might rains frogs. The sun may shine so hard it melts the patio furniture. Go away you bother me, Mr. Weatherman. Well, we all got our comeuppance yesterday. Mr. Weatherman got it right.
Warning sirens started blaring and they sound scary as hell. Lemme tell ya! No sound effects in any of the scary movies made lately came up with anything scarier. Then, all of the sudden the damn tornados started dropping out of the sky. Excuse me, I’m really not in the mood for this! Could you go elsewhere, storm? I would really appreciate it. Didn’t sleep well last night and was in the mood to vegetate, NOT contemplate where in the house to hide to increase my chances of surviving the remains of this day.
Dallas/Fort Worth got hammered. Hundreds of people are homeless. But, thank God, no one was killed. That is the true miracle here. Brother and sister-in-law are looking at replacing their roof for the 4th time in 15 years. Her shiny red beamer was totally destroyed by hail the size of baseballs.
I found myself cast into instant solidarity with six million neighbors. A potential disaster is the great equalizer. Everyone single person in the area is thinking the exact same thing. “Oh crap, it might just rain a little, or a twister might decide to squat on my head and I lose everyone I love and everything I own in 5 minutes. All that decides it is the luck of the draw.” Sheesh!
Mr. Husband and I were extremely fortunate. At our house the only thing that happened was a few rose petals fell of my rose-bush. We suffered mutual semi-nervous breakdowns. I hunkered in the bathroom with my most prized possessions, my wedding ring, laptop, and purse. Hub-man brought his pistol and our tax returns.
The morning after was one of the most beautiful mornings I’ve ever seen. Mother Nature painted the day with a delicate silk brush. Gentle breezes, birds singing, butterflies flitting. Hadn’t realized how scared I was until I looked around and realized how crystal clear and wonderful everything looked, and sounded. Nothing like having the patooty scared out of me to realize how much I love life.