a coping skills kinda day

Sometimes it feels like the Bipolar is destroying me. 
Sometimes it feels like I'm losing all control. 
Today is one of those days. 

I'm on medication, which has been (literally) lifesaving. 
I've gone from sleepless nights and long manic trips 
followed by debilitating bouts with depression 
to a more mellow, more leveled out kind of me. 

Lately, however, it feels like the Bipolar is winning. 
I think it may be time to adjust my medication again, 
because the insomnia's getting worse, 
and I feel like I'm losing myself, 
losing the good parts of me under all the tension, 
the anxiety, the frustration and the roller coaster moods. 

When things are stable, when I feel more in control, 
I'm not so angry and irritable, not so mad at life, 
not so jealous of people who aren't Bipolar I, 
people who don't have to fight the demons I have to. 

I want to be able to be both stable and passionate, 
both emotional and in control. What I don't know 
is if that is even possible. I heard somewhere 
that living with Bipolar I requires a lifetime 
of tweaking the medication, of going to therapy, 
of avoiding triggers and trying to be healthy. 

I suppose, for me, that's been true. I was diagnosed
years ago, and I've been going to therapy religiously, 
taking my medication mostly non-sporadically, 
seeing my psych on a regular basis and refraining
from indulging in any number of things that trigger
episodes-- things like casual sex or drinking. 

I suppose I just needed to get some of this gunk 
out of my mind. I needed to put down in words 
that I'm irritated, that I'm frustrated, 
that I struggle to feel like I'm an okay person  
when the moods make me feel like I'm failing, 
like I'm always on the edge about to fall off. 

Today is a coping skills kinda day, 
a day when I screen my phone calls and order out, 
a day when I try my damnedest to be gentle with myself. 

It's going to be okay. I'm not suicidal. 
That's always a plus. I'll pull it together, 
and go back to my usual zany self. 
But right now? Right now I am going to curl up 
with some music and lock myself
away from the world for a while.
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when joie de vivre goes missing

I’ve always been a dreamer, always seen myself as having something about me that is more than what I show the people in my life. I suppose I see myself as having a secret side that I either don’t know how or don’t want to share. Maybe there is too much risk in sharing something so personal. Maybe it is a fear of rejection or a fear of being hurt again just when I’m finally able to be vulnerable.

Whatever the case, several years ago, I stopped writing. The words got stuck somewhere in the plumbing of my mind. What used to flow freely became clogged and stagnant. When words did ooze out, they disappointed me more than inspired me to write more. I felt like I was failing every time I put words down onto paper.

In addition to the feeling of failing, my H began to read my journal when I went somewhere. I’d come back from running errands or going to the park with the kids, only to be faced with an angry confrontation because something that I wrote about him was less than favorable.

All things combined, I just couldn’t write anymore. One kind woman I knew told me that sometimes the soul goes into hibernation. I liked her way of explaining it. That way, I didn’t have to face the fact that maybe the creative part of me had died. I was instead able to rest in the certainty that, someday, it would wake back up again.

I hope someday my creativity will come back. I hope I won’t continue to be barren of passion and intensity. I hope that my spark, my joie de vivre will return. Maybe this year will be the one where I come back to life, the one where I start to live again, where the words wake up inside me and begin to flow again. A girl can dream.