This week I’ve thought a lot about having bipolar, especially since a book I ordered arrived called “Touched With Fire,” an investigation into the link between bipolar and artistic temperament. Mostly, it just made me feel sad. Sad that I am affected with this illness and sad that so many creative people have lived their lives under the shadow of mental illness.
I turned on Dr. Oz yesterday and saw an actor talking about his struggle with bipolar and started to feel like its everywhere and that’s a good thing. It’s good for people to talk about their experiences and it’s good for other people to listen and understand. But the talking doesn’t make it less debilitating – it just makes those of us affected with this illness think about having it more.
I would say I have a “low” day about once a week and this is coming from someone who takes their medication religiously. But the ups and downs keep me from being “flat” as my doctor calls it and he is so right. My feelings are so powerful but controlled.
And I am grateful for that too when I see that I have healthy children, a wonderful husband, and a life I am proud to call my own. My medication allows me to be me most of the time. And it allows me to be productive, to accomplish my goals and live a meaningful life.
So I will continue to accept the low days but on those days I will do everything in my power to minimize their affect on me. Things like yoga, bike riding, meditation and speaking French all make me forget myself and let me live life on my terms.