If you are looking for me to say how much I hate my life with bipolar 2 disorder, you will not find it in this post. It does not define me, but it is a significant part of who I am. If you erase bipolar, you erase me as a whole. I am never going to live without it, and I want to give others a taste of my reality. I do not place pressure on myself to be perfect. I am honest. This is my mind; this is my journey. Here is a little bit of what it is like to live in the mind of a 28-year-old diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder.
A Constant Marathon Of The Mind.
You are coasting along a straight path, then you struggle to get up that hill. The pain is almost a high. One moment you have no energy, another too much. You feel like you are about to break, but you can’t stop, you have to keep running.
My mind is like an ongoing story, that pauses when I go to sleep, and immediately starts again when my eyes open. You never know where the story will go or what emotions it will bring out of you. It’s exciting and petrifying all at the same time. There are moments when your mind is running so fast it is almost painful. It never stops and is both exhausting and exhilarating.
You Are Never Content.
I will spend my life shooting to for the moon and the minute I land on it I will be disappointed because I didn’t make it to the stars. The day I graduated from the College, all I could think about was “You can do better!” When you live with bipolar, you can always do more, be more and reach higher. It is the reason I am successful but also the reason I constantly question myself. In my world being content is when everything stops, and standing still is my worse fear.
Your Emotions Run Deep.
I hear a song and feel the emotion inside the singer’s voice. I smell a flower and can explore its growth. I am empathetic in a way that is almost magical. I can sense other people’s pain to the point it keeps me up at night. I do not behave based on what I know; I behave based on what I feel. I laugh as hard as I cry, I hurt as hard as I love. When I can’t feel emotions, I feel as though I cannot breathe. I cannot write and cannot think. My emotions run deep.
You Feel Like You Are Constantly Treading Water.
Everyday my eyes open, and I have to tell myself to do everything I can to keep my head above water. I live my life on the edge, which only means I am that much closer to rock bottom. You are constantly self-conscious about feeling too much or feeling too little. Society is screaming at you and trying to persuade you to believe you are wrong. Some days are harder than others, but I refuse to drown.
The Lows Are Beyond Explanation.
The lows are beyond explanation and I will do anything to stay away from them. It is debilitating. You are screaming at the top of your lungs, but no one can hear you. It is not a headache, it is a cloud in your head that makes it almost impossible to see. You have no energy to speak. You are empty. You are numb. The light at the end of the tunnel seems so far, but now I know that the light is always there. I just have to work towards finding it when darkness is blinding me.
This Is My Truth.
I was born with this mind, and I would never choose to live without it. I do not know what it is like to live without bipolar disorder. In my life, what we deem as a “normal” mind is something I am petrified off. It is so unfamiliar to me. I have worked towards finding a treatment plan that allows me to thrive as an individual with bipolar disorder, and the first step was being bold about the life I wanted. I took control back into my hands and stopped allowing society to define my mind. It is a challenge, but it also allows me to see the world in a way that others cannot. I stopped fighting against bipolar a long time I go. I work with it now as a companion.
The first time I went swimming in the ocean, the lifeguard told me that if I got caught in the current, I had to swim with it. He told me-“If you fight against it, you will drown because it is much more powerful than you. You have to ride with it, that is how you survive.”
For more mental health content, follow me @hannahdblum