The bipolar 2 diagnosis has made me face up to the fact that I’ve been two people or personalities for quite some time.
One tries to find the fairy lights over wildflower meadows. To follow paths that promise a forest clearing with the scent of pine trees on a warm afternoon; strong, tall, wise trees to lean against and listen to the music of bird song. Observe the wonders of the forest floor; multi-coloured mushrooms and unfurling ferns, vines and small shoots someday to be trees. To look past the shadows cast by the tall trees and see the pools of sunshine along the path. To let positivity in action, in thinking, in writing, in doing be the way that life is carried out.
The other personality is the opposite. Held down and back by deep depression (the deepest it’s been in a long while), this other struggles to get through every minute, every hour in every day. Beyond the bleakness; a bleakness that is more than “not good enough” or “good enough but not given the prize,” or even the sad, lonely little girl. This is a primal blackness; an emotional pain so deep that the sunlight gets lost, and the moon is never full. The rutted and up- heaved path runs under strangely bent and deformed trees whose black limbs overhang, touching each other like crooked fingers, creating an arbor of darkness that shuts out the stars.
No matter how strange it sounds, both are part of me. I think right now the negative version has the upper hand – even of days when I beat the depression back for a while, and take a positive approach, there is so much in the positive realm to be done, promises kept, dust bunnies* that stick their fuzzy tongues out at me. Even the fun things seem like too much work – the nice note written to accompany some pixie dust, making up the parcels with fairy wands and other magical elements. Or I forget those projects, in the rush to catch a train, or write a blog I never publish, or other blogs I’ve fallen behind reading, so I don’t get around to passing on the positive – to passing on the magic. I occasionally pass along instead, in my blog, awards of inspiration, blogs whose authors deal in hope and promise, folks who face chronic illness and chronic pain every day yet can inspire, and uplift. How they present beauty against the ugliness of chronic pain/chronic illness(es). My contribution to keeping a positive attitude, a positive approach.
Sometimes the days that start with me trying to take the positive attitude, in some wildflower meadow, but then hordes of locusts, or storm clouds with thunder, lightning and tornadoes, send me reeling back down the darker road with puddles so deep there is no reflection, rocky, narrow footings along barren, wind-carved mountains. Right now the bleakness is stronger; seeing past the shadows is a difficult chore. The words my dark side writes are brittle, hard, and knife-sharp; not inspirational or uplifting reading; just bleakness and sorrow.
Without a day program, without a focus, with only partially shaped self-designed plan, the positive is hard to hold onto. It slips away like tears down a cheek. I truly try to break the hold of depression – waiting desperately for the meds to kick in – but at a lost at what to do.
I appreciate all my virtual friends and their kindness and their encouragement. I know I don’t say that often enough. (Hence the pixie dust and magic wands when I have the positive energy needed for that project).
I want to do fun projects like pixie dolls, but I can’t get the pieces to work. It’s hard to stay positive when you’re alone (physically) all day – I realize that I’m never virtually alone – I mean having a real world someone to call and ask out for a coffee and help me get the d***n pixie dolls to work!, lol (Project is put out by Klutz afterall!)
But just like I need a day program for my mental illness, I need a real world friend for my positive outlook. Right now the odds of getting either are zilch. So, my battle continues – does healing mean I’ll be one person again, or does the bi (in bipolar 2) mean I’ll always have two paths; on to skip and dance down as tall as I want to be, the other to shuffle, and making myself as small as possible.
* I may have referred to dust bunnies sticking their tongues out before — my short term memory is just that — short term.