Where the wind flows: A new direction on the horizon?

Well as I said before in my last post, I wanted to try and write more regularly.  I think that in the almost 7 years that I started keeping a personal blog, I think that I have grown to love writing a bit.  As you may know, I actually at one point wanted to become a writer, but that didn’t really come to pass, or maybe not yet?

Let me tell you about the reason that I haven’t been able to write.  It is surprising to say this because, I shifted the focus of this blog to informing folks about mental health issues, all while being a log for me to have an outlet to sound off about them, and maybe other things in my life.  Heck, I even have a job in the field that I am receiving services in….right….about that.

That is what I wanted to air out today in this post.  I have worked for a year this month in the mental health field, while being a mental health patient myself.  I even started full time this past summer, and that is when the troubles started.

If you remember a post I posted back then, when I started full time work, I had a lot of issues with things then, and it caused me to go into near crisis state of depression, and I started to isolate (more on this word later).  As the months went by, I did what I could, but something still wasn’t right.  And then there was this past January, when I went to the TEDxAugusta conference here in my town.

I looked at all of the speakers, and they were so passionate about what they were proposing to all of us in the audience. I completely felt really excited about just networking, and talking to other people who were as passionate about just improving themselves.  Then, two weeks later, I rented a car, and went to Macon and WHAM! Training, and again, I was in a situation where everyone was completely into absorbing all of the information they could to apply it in their lives, and in their respective agencies.  After that, I went and visited people.

Then, I came back to work.  Do not get me wrong when I say what I’m about to say.  I am extremely grateful, and thankful that I have a stable job, and I do work really hard.  However, picture yourself with a serious mental illness, which, while it has a good remission period, you will always have symptoms.  You work in a place where you are always having to talk about your past, to people, who also have serious mental illnesses, and you have to teach them how to get to an elevated state of recovery.

One of the things that I have never liked to this day is to be consistently be reminded of my past.  As a matter of fact, if something happened in my past and I haven’t dealt with it, I try and deal with it to the point, and learn what I can from it.  I’ve done this for years, and it has helped me to get through a lot of things.  However, I lost that when I was going to through my worst years when I was in my mid 20s.

And that is the reason why I will have to eventually leave the mental health field as a profession.  It melds together in two ways.  The first, is that there is this impression that you always have to be this model of “recovery”, all of the time.  That, in and of itself, means that you have to be on a pedestal, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  I’ve come to find over these years that I really don’t like the spotlight anymore, and that being put on this “pedestal” of modeling recovery, I can’t live at all.  I guess I feel like this because, I’m lucky in a sense when it comes to my recovery.  I have always had a good support system around me.  My mom worked in the field for 10+ years, and I have had a lot of support in my community, and I lucked out on who my gives me services during me increasing my state of recovery.  In that sense, I do not relate to the majority of the people I serve, at all.  In contrast, a lot of them come from worse environments than I came from, and a lot of them didn’t get a lot of the chances that I got, or, if they did, they did not take advantage of them like I did.

The second is that, I think it is in these past 3 months, that I have honestly thought about what I see as a patient and a provider.  I do try my best here, and I think for me, if I’m going to do something, I’m going to commit to it, and try and improve it the best I can.  There are too many egos, grandstanding, unaware, and uncaring people in this industry.  While I got lucky and got people who do care about where I’m going and want me to reach greater heights, there are too many that do not get access to quality folks like that.  And perhaps it isn’t just on them.  The reality of it is, that it goes both ways from what I’ve seen.  The people with the illness have essentially given up, and since it was easy to just give up, they did that.  Because it was easy, they want more easy things.  So they manipulate, they lie, they cheat, putting themselves into worse situations than before.

At one point I was like this too.  But I wanted more.  I’ve always wanted more.  I’ve been reading a book from Dr. Carol Dweck called, “Mindset, The New Psychology of Success”.  It helped me to remember things that I lost.  I remember when I learned how to play percussion instruments, I worked and worked at it.  When I learned fighters, I worked.  It helped me to learn to enjoy the challenge more.  I use the word “yet” a lot now, because I’m never where I want to be yet, and there are new challenges to be faced.

It is because of this that I can tolerate what I do, and it is because of this that I will change professions.  One thing I learned is to really stay true to myself.  I can’t be somewhere where I have to be reminded of my past all the time.  And I don’t want to be around anyone who don’t want to work to move forward around their pasts.  Also, I can’t work on my current biggest flaw, which is my isolation issues.  I want to actively work on this in earnest.  Perhaps it will enhance my view on this job, perhaps not.  But, I want to really be able to open up and share my feelings with a few people.  I don’t want to hold things in, or shut myself out while trying to figure out things myself.  I learned that, from going out and doing things, is very important to me, and I think that this job hiders me from doing this.  I go home and I sleep for 12 hours because I’m so physically and emotionally drained from this work.  I’m 30 years old.  That is not supposed to be at the prime of my life.

So there is where I am.  I need to write this because I didn’t want to hold back anymore.  I can’t express my feelings verbally yet, but I am working on it.  This is the only way I can really do that, and that is getting harder because since my phone got stolen, I can’t find my back up codes to disable my authentication stuff.  But, I will say this, I am formulating a plan that will get me to a place where I can do some good work, do what I want for mental health (which is really blogging about the main issues), and have the freedom of living I want to have.  But yeah, this is 7 months of frustration that I wrote about here, and I’m glad I did.

Facing the words of the past.

In episode 12 of my old blog, I put the following quote inside of the entry from Bruce Barton:

Great men suffer hours of depression through introspection and self-doubt. That is why they are great. That is why you will find modesty and humility the characteristics of such men.

Back then I did not know what it meant. I was two months away from being 24 years old. I think the best way to think of it is that I was way too lost and blinded by the symptoms of my mental illness to actually be able to really think clearly. But, it’s hard to explain. I felt like that someday, even though I was the severity of my symptoms affected me severely, and there was not people in my life that understood what I needed at that time, I felt like that one day, that this quote would be important someday.

For the past several hours, I’ve been here reading every word of my old blog and writing down the words that speak to me now. I’ve done this for two reasons. The first is that I’m going to take some of the things that I’ve said in this blog, and make it into a session for those individuals that I serve. The second, is for me, and you, and everyone who reads this entry. This is the dream that is my recovery, and the best way I can contribute to this special day of Suicide Prevention.

I think that all of the key things that happened to me are when I was 25. I think that in this year, I was probably at the peak of my symptoms. I probably felt the very lowest of myself then. I had suicidal ideations but no real attempts at that time. I think that I got into crisis states of symptoms very often. I was reckless, wasteful, and I guess back then I really wanted to die badly. I read an entry from September 2009 that was the crux of the beginning of my actually journey in living in recovery.

I think reading through all of those entries, I felt like that even though I was a good person for the most part back then. I felt like I had to lie all of the time…to protect myself, or rather, them from me. I felt like no one back them really knew how to deal with me from that standpoint of my symptoms. Also, I didn’t know how to deal with me.

As I look through the entries and up to the final entry to the that blog, I was surprised to see that there were 60% more positive entries than negative ones. As a matter of fact, I actually wrote about what those entries did for me in a semi-blinded light in September of 2011. I think that since then, now having a job that allows me to pool my experiences from those years, and use them to save lives, is the end result of all the struggles I’ve come from.

I want to go back to the quote above now from Bruce Barton. Even now, I will suffer from depression as I have been diagnosed with a disorder that I can’t control when the cycles are. The best I can really do is to identify what cycle is coming and to reduce the frequency of the symptoms. Back in my past entries, there was a lot of confusion in my words, and that confusion led me to panic. The panic I felt made me think about death a lot. That panic made me do horrible things on occasion just like anyone else with a diagnosis. However, this panic was caused by not knowing my illness. By not knowing the nuances, and the knowledge that bipolar type 2 has periods where you feel like you are “normal”.

Even then, I get depressed more than I get mania. Then, I think, and I get frightened, and I feel like I can’t do anything, even to this day. And I think it’s because of this very thing, that I feel like I’m humble. Yes, I will live in recovery for life, and I’ll have these symptoms for as long as I live. But I think it’s because of my symptoms that on this day, I won’t take my life for granted, and I am humbled at the fact that people see a human being beyond the diagnosis. That’s what that quote means to me.

On this day, where suicide awareness is put on the map, I want you all to take a look at the things that aren’t said. Take a look at that eye that looks like it is infinitely sad…that slight tremor when you touch someone’s hand. Also, take a look at those who say all too much, but never the right thing. Perhaps just asking one piercing, sincere question, one open heart, or one clear ear could be the difference in breaking someone’s world, or saving it.

I’m going to save a lot of people eventually because of the struggles that I faced today. It was probably the toughest thing in the world to go back and face those words of a me that was lost. To cut through the fluff and to see what is really going on. However, I am thankful for those words that I wrote in that blog, and I will continue to be thankful. I truly believe that it was those words, back in April of 2008, that shaped me into the person I am today, and I’m not just another statistic.

A new breakthrough: What lies there beyond the perfect.

It has been quite a bit since I’ve written anything on here.  Coming off of the hugest breakdown of the year thus far for myself, I had to search for a lot of answers.

I did figure out that I had a bad streak of perfectionism, and had been actively working on it for the past few months.  A part of my growth as a person is based on the type of discernment that comes with knowing myself in a deeper sense.  To be honest with those of you who read this, I didn’t really know who I was.  No, perhaps that is the wrong way to put it.  A better way to put it would be that I never had a clear view of who I was, and what I wanted, because I always suppressed what I desired.  To a certain point, I still do that.  Why though?

Well, earlier this month, I had a huge breakdown as I have mentioned.  In this breakdown, I felt exactly like the times in my childhood and adolescence where I would just shut down.  I’d shut down so bad that I would not talk to anyone.  It isn’t like I didn’t want to talk, it was more like my mind was paralyzed.  I took my medicine and vitamins throughout this stretch, and I was generally safe.  My mind however, was a complete prison.

That Thursday, I decided to up my mouth game a little bit.  So, I got some sesame oil out of my kitchen and did something called oil pulling.  While I was doing this, I thought about one of the feelings that kept recurring as that time happened. “Second Best”.

There have been so many things in my life where I felt like I wasn’t good enough.  This predicated and fueled my perfectionism.  These feelings of inferiority stemmed all the way from my childhood, and those same feelings were a big thing in causing me to shutdown.  So, being that I could not get to my mentor or my counselor, I shared these feelings with a friend of mine.  That led to a big weight off of my shoulders.

Then, the following Tuesday, I told my counselor about everything that happened.  She was pretty proud that I came through this.  Then, I saw my mentor when heading home.  I told him what had happened.  Then, he put in a call about me becoming a peer counselor at my psychiatrist’s office! 

As for me, this realization opened up my world a lot more.  My relationships with people have improved immensely.  I feel more open, and not always having to be one step ahead of everyone.  More importantly, I feel absolutely confident. 

I wonder where this strange road will lead up.  I think maybe now I can do some good because of my personal breakthrough.  Everyone’s struggle is different, unique, and beautiful, I guess.  All I can really say is, I’ll be able to do more damage and heal some more lives because of this!

Beyond The Hope. Beyond The Freedom.

The words hope and freedom have a lot of meaning in my life. I’ve gone throughout the years searching for these and their meaning to me in my life. As I go to deeper depths in battling my perfectionistic ways, I sit here now typing, ready to challenge these words as they have applied and do apply to my life in this moment.

Let’s tackle the latter first. When I think back to my childhood and through my adolescent years, I feel like I had a ton more freedom. Even after I was diagnosed, I still had quite a good bit of freedom. I didn’t take advantage of it in a negative, or positive ways. That’s to be expected just because if the sheer notion that I was (and, for all intensive purposes, still am) young. If I were to be a bit more descriptive about those years, even despite what happened to me to shape my endeavors whilst in those years, I would say think of a scale with no weight on it. On most days, I was okay with being average. The reasoning for that is that if I didn’t get too high, then I could sort of “deal” with the lows. Again, I was young during this time, and the thing about it was that it was a failing strategy back then.

Even today, I do have quite a good bit of freedom granted to me.  I would like to think that I’m a lot smarter than I was in my childhood (perhaps not by a lot).  Last year, I was just glad to finally get into a stabilized situation in my life.  In a sense, I don’t think I’ve had more stability at any point in my life than I have right now.  This brought a new found appreciation in having this sort of “complete freedom” that I had.  As you may have seen, I have been in constant limbo on if this is enough.  In my heart, I don’t think it is enough to just have appreciation for whatever freedoms are granted to me anymore.  The thing about it is, I always felt a huge sense of guilt when I talked about freedom at all.  This also goes for in my blog.  I know that somewhere, something, or someone had to sacrifice for my freedom.  It could be as close as my family or friends.  I can also be as far as those around the world fighting for their freedom.  Maybe I have become more aware that not everyone is afforded freedoms that I have, and that, perhaps in the past, it is my fault somehow (not so much on the worldly scale).

I did not really believe in the world hope for an extremely long time.  As someone who has an illness that at any given moment can make it seem like that there is no hope, it is a really difficult concept to grasp.  To believe there is an outcome that is in your favor all of the time is a draining concept to the mind of a manic depressive.  I can probably speculate that anyone that has had a fit of depression has felt this way in their life at some point.  It is really that hard to grasp for someone for a mental illness.

There is however a way that it can happen.  One with a mental illness has to have something so destructive done by their hands, and also a miracle happen.  Please note that is just my belief, and it isn’t because I have had both of these things happen to me.  The thing about is, with how easy for someone with a mental illness to relapse, a lot of the times when they cycle or show symptoms of whatever illness they have, a lot of the time they really are not aware of what they are doing during said cycles.  If something destructive happens to where they are made aware of what happens when their symptoms happen, then they can possibly get that help they need.  From that help, they can get hope that they can turn things around.  There are also moments where because of the illness, unfortunate things can happen to a person just because they really cannot function like a human being.  If you add the amount of abhorrent ignorance there is in the world, it can lead to situations that a miracle would need to happen.  If this miracle happens, I feel like a new appreciation could possibly happen, to enhance their situation, lives, and the lives around them better.  Let us be honest here as this is again, an ideological way to look at building hope, as everyone is different as well as there are more untreated people with a mental illness than are those who are in treatment.

Now I think about hope, and for the longest time I was in limbo about it.  It was a new feeling to me, and it left me asking, “what is next?”  Now, I ask myself, “what is hope if I can’t help others build hope up in themselves, too?”  Considering my position in life, I feel like that it isn’t enough anymore for me to hope.  I want to see if I can build hope in others in some sort of way.  Even with my illness and those days where I will feel utterly hopeless and defeated, I still think that maybe if more people had a little hope in their situations, the world would be overall better.  I feel the same way with freedom.  Maybe in some way, I could help with that too.

I know that the world is cruel.  There is a lot of ignorance, judgment, and an overall lack of objectivity in the majority of the world.  There are injustices, people being hurt and broken every minute perhaps.  I don’t know, I guess where I am right now, is I want to not only enjoy my personal journey through life, but also help people enjoy theirs as well, especially those like me.  A lot of us like me are those geniuses and prodigies that a lot of the world would call weird, crazy, or psycho.  I’ve also have been called these things over my life as well.  And while everyone cannot be saved, I guess maybe with this blog, and hopefully in the future, one person will read these words, or hear me speak, or anything like that, and be better by them.

I’m one person though, one who tries to do too much a lot of the time, who trolls people a good bit (you guys have no idea), and who breaks occasionally for no reason whatsoever.  However, I think I can do something, and that something is better than nothing, right?

An ultimate fear that I face, and I ultimately don’t know what to do about it.

There is something about being in a better place in your life that makes you think long and hard.  Maybe perhaps that isn’t with the majority, but with me, being able to think is one of the primary things I kind of pride myself on.

When I was in worse times, I didn’t think clearly, the lows and the highs were very severe.  The consequences were that I did lots of damages in many parts of my life.  To give a short example of this, I was at one time a very talented percussionist and composer of percussion music.  Because of my illness, and not treating it properly, I decided to give it up.  I don’t really have any regrets about giving up music, but I often think about the damage I did while I was at the heights of my musician days.

Even beyond that, I still did some serious damage while I was learning to become a fighting game player.  I was still untreated for the majority of those years.  Now that I am better recovery wise, I always think about those days.

One of the things that I know for a fact is that there is no cure for bipolar disorder.  I will always cycle through mania, depression, and in between the two for as long as I live.  I do take my medicine everyday, and I now am in therapy training in tools that will help me identify, cope, and stabilize my own moods in conjunction with my medication.  Hell, even now, I actually started using Lumosity in an attempt to up my brain functions.  So, I am doing all the right things in terms of my recovery.

Even then, I still have severe attention problems, and I still have eratic behavior.  It really bothers me when I get called weird, because I know I can’t do anything about my behavior at times.  I don’t mean any harm now by my eratic behavior.  The morbid thoughts are very few and far between, and most of my eccentrism is playful and lighthearted.  In the times where I would dissociate or I was at my worst, it stemed from things that happened to me sexually from when I was a child.  Then the eratic behavior I experienced in manic states, especially with women would be aggressive, and sexual in nature.  To compound things, I would have an extreme fear of men that would lead me in the past to act aggressively towards any homosexual male.  I am not a homosexual myself, but in those times I would pretty much want to fight any male that would hit on me.  Now, I just respectfully tell them that I am straight.

I wanted to describe these thngs to you because, as I improve in managing my illness and moods, I think about it, and today, I think I have a fear of literally opening up my heart to anyone.  This fear manifests a lot in my outings.  Part of the reason I feel this way is that even though I’m better at this, I feel like I can’t know when I will cycle and what will trigger the cycle not even 40% of the time yet.  So to me, it means 60% of the time I don’t know whether I’m depressed, manic, or in between.  It takes me now about a day to process and adjust to a cycle and identify the trigger to it.  For example, I cycled from mania to depression on Tuesday, shortly after I wrote the last entry and published it.  It was because of a looming feeling of loneliness that perhaps accumilated because of winter.  To compesate, I try and reach out to people.  Then the problem I just mentioned arrives.  If I am not clear about my thoughts, or in addition, my attention gets diverted, I lose the clarity in them, and the message I want to convey gets tainted.  You can even see it in my past entries.  If I get distracted, I tend to stroll off topic, and while eventually I get back on topic, it sometimes takes away from the message I really want to send.

In friendships, I feel so distant because of this.  I can dance most people’s socks off and meet people through it.  I can post up a clip of a combo on my YouTube channel and gain friends through that.  I can even write my fragmented thoughts on this blog while spreading all the awareness in the world about the world of mental health and gain following through that.  But what is the point, if my feelings can’t get through at some point to those people?  In this phase of my life, as I’m heavily involved in the betterment of my own life, I am also wanting to leave anything I do better than it was to the best of my ability, and I know to do that, people will have to see how serious I am, and what moves my heart.

I will not lie however.  The other half of my fear of really opening my heart to others in many ways stems from being afraid of my own illness itself.  To be honest, I’m afraid of the damage potential that I can do.  If I fail at not managing myself properly, I could potentially hurt a ton of people in the process.  It has happened in the past.  I didn’t treat my illness properly, and people saw me differently, and eventually went away from me.  So, because of that fear, today, I keep my distance.  I do have friends, a great deal of them one would say, but I don’t open all the way up.  I guess I get scared because of those two things.

My therapist says that I need to accept that this illness is a part of me at some point.  That way, it will help me to explain it to peers, and anyone else I come across. I guess what she is getting at is to become one with it, and treat it like a physical one.  Maybe if I keep on my treatment plan, I can accept it.  I guess right now, I’m just really scared to open up now, but I can’t keep being scared at the end of the day.  Perhaps, it would be helpful if I knew who I could turn to other than my care providers.  A know fact about me is that 85% of my friends are significantly younger than I am.  That shouldn’t matter, but in a way, it kind of does.  While I’m at a point in my life where I’m rebuilding my brand, looking for outlets to better myself and the endeavors that I partake in, and improve my treatment plan, I can safely say that the majority of those people only turn to me for fun.  Honestly, this isn’t to say that there aren’t people that can be there for me, or that it is wrong to think that way of me.  After all, when it comes to nightlife, I usually plan my weekends during the early week and know what is going on.  What I’m getting at though, is because of their youth, it makes it even harder to open up to them in the terms of my thoughts, and that’s because of the fear of my illness that I have, and a warped thought in my mind that the people that would want to be there for me really are not ready for the “monster” I see myself as because of my illness, and thus, I don’t really want to taint their lives on my account, because I have done such in the past.

So there you have it.  This may very well be the most concise and to the point entry I have ever written in my 5 and a half years of recording my thoughts when being bipolar.  I know that in time, I will come to accept this illness, and make it a part of me.  In this juncture, i have to.  Otherwise, any progress i have made will start to manifest to regression, and then I could possibly die by my own hand due to that.  I think anyone with this illness struggles with this very dilemma like I am right now, but for the most part, there is always something, whether it be children, a spouse, a family member, etc, that motivates you become one with your thoughts and be able to take control of them.  I guess right now, the answer maybe still blurry for me, so the best thing I can do is to keep grinding.  Perhaps one of you can comment and share some insight, or if you are reading this from seeing the link pop up on your Facebook or Twitter news feed, give me some insight on this problem.  I guess this is my way of saying that, I’m lost, and I need some guidance.

Updates! And a brief message.

I made some quick updates!

First, the change to template is one to reflect my favorite color, silver.  It’s a minimal theme since I like a minimalistic approach to most things, and it’s easier to read!

I’ve also changed the title of this blog from “The World God Only Knows” to “The Jet Life Chronicles”.  Here is a great definition from urban dictionary for the phrase jet life:

To be happy, to be positive, to see all good and be of good spirit, to have fun and enjoy life. Being a super great friend and family, a JET LIFE

I’ve been meditating about a greek phliloshophical term lately called Sophrosyne.  This term basically has to do with healthy-minded practices.  Pretty much practicing self-control and moderation by way of obtaining knowledge and balance.  This was actually a greek goddess in mythology, and in the Chinese circles, this term means purity, integrity, and virginity.  I feel like this is the best way for myself to approach my life.

I feel like the earlier content in my attempt at the 30 day challenge was tainted because I feel like I went too fast.  My birthday was coming up, and I think I had many manic episodes that tainted the message I feel I may have been trying to send.  And I stopped writing for few months after the stuff happened.  I don’t know if I want to run that back or not, because it could happen again.  But I learned from it, and while I practice moderation and self-control while having an illness that is the opposite of those things, it will be tough.

But still, hopefully the content from here on will be as clear as I can get it.  Keep in mind I am still struggling with a disorder that will mess with my mind, but I will try my best to keep my message clear.

Finally, I updated my about section!  Give it a look if you’d like!

The One Who Colors Everything.

I’m looking this morning at the river near my apartment, and the view I see is the water in front of me.  The sun is shining to the east, and the moon is faintly glowing to the west.  This image is a perfect for the types of things I’ve come to realize this past weekend.

Last Friday, after a night out with friends, I realized something very serious.  I went to clear my head.  I sat at the very same river that I just mentioned, with the veil of confusion in my mind.  I eventually went home, and slept.  The next morning, I entered a tournament.  At this tournament, I was still reeling from last night.  The result was I could not focus, and I ended up getting dead last in the tournament.  I wasn’t really phased about it.  I was still on the thing that I realized the night prior.

I sit here now, still thinking about it.  I’m completely in a state of confusion right now.  I would even say that I have been depressed since about 3:30 on Saturday morning.  You might be asking, what is it that I realized?  What could be bugging me so much that it would eat me alive for this long?

Well, that reason is because of two separate items.  One of which, I already knew about since the beginning of this year.  The second is a more recent thing.

On Tuesday, I took a small peak into the bipolar disorder subreddits (I am really new to reddit so I just clicked on what was available).  There were two topics that really caught my interest.  The first of which, was a post from three years ago that an anonymous person asked about how to cope with his then girlfriend having bipolar disorder.  The answers varied from the ignorant to the insightful.  There was comment that really stuck out to me.  Here is that comment:

Patience, Pride, and Perspective.

1) Be patient.  There is NOTHING you can do to calm her down once she cycles.  You just have to let the chemicals, that are in her brain causing the state, pass.  Just weather the storm of insults patiently.  Be quiet.  Be calm.  Be ready to call the cops if she starts seriously threatening to harm herself.  Don’t provoke.  Don’t antagonize.  Don’t take it personally.  Which leads to…

2)  Have enough pride to not let your feelings get hurt by the meaningless insults being flung your way.  Insulting back will only worsen and escalate the situation.  Understand that once the mood has passed she will regret what she said and be remorseful of her actions–even if she doesn’t show it.  She would stop the outbursts if she could, but she can’t, and neither can…

3)  You.  Put it into perspective.  This will be lifelong for her.  You may be the recipient of the insults, but she has to live with a condition that will often self-destruct most of her relationships, friendships, and other opportunities for the rest of her life.   She has it much worse off than you do.  You can walk away from the situation.  She can’t.  What you can do is be there to show patience when she’s cycling, and forgiveness later when she’s looking for understanding.

 

Reading this reminded me of the last girl I actually fell, or was falling for.  She had the same disorder that I did which gave her an insight as to what I was going through.  She had all three of the things that were mentioned in this comment.  However, I was not at that point to where I could do the same for her.  As a result, I broke contact.  Since her, I have not fallen for anyone else since.  As a matter of fact, even though I dated someone briefly last year, I still have not let my heart be wooed by anyone in the way that this one person did.  Even though now I am mentally stronger than I was back then, I don’t know if anyone can handle me the way that she did.  As unfair as that sounds, I truly do feel like that at this point.  I am a very complex person, who has to think two steps ahead most of the time because if I don’t, I may mess up and ruin a life.  I don’t want to ruin lives like back then.

That is the first thing I realized.  I have to open up to more people.  This blog is always open, and for the few followers that I do have, they get an open view of how my mind works.  That’s not what I mean though.  It isn’t enough.  The above there is one example, but I don’t really mean in the context of finding love.  I mean in the context of healing myself first and foremost.

I have started counseling, but even the counseling I’m getting is going to be finite.  So, eventually, I will have to be able to be open with people outside of this blog, and counseling.  I’ve gotten a false sense of security  because of my popularity in the area that I live in.  As I’ve said in the past,, most of those people I believe see me as a clown or entertainment, and the big thing is that for some reason I thought that would be something I enjoyed.  It turns out that I am a lot more than that.  I really have to open to the world, and perhaps share my story to people outside this blog and outside of the area I’m in.  In the circles I’m in, it isn’t appropriate to really pour my heart out or anything, but in more intimate settings, I would like to find people to really share some of my fears, insecurities, and my heart with.

Also, there was another post on reddit that struck me.  This one asked from the perspective of people who do not suffere from mental illnesses, how do those who suffer from depression look to you?  There is one comment and one quote that stuck completely out to me.  The comment tackled the well known saying that you hear a lot in mental health circles.  Actually, perhaps this is heard in all parts of life.  “You are in control of your own happiness”.  I don’t think this is true for the majority of people that have any type of mental illness.  However, I can actually say that perhaps one day, I can be happy. Speaking purely for myself, I can take the medicine that I’m on, and I can go to all of the counseling that I can, but even now, it does not stop.  I cycle just like any other person with bipolar disorder.  The cycles may be less severe, but they are definitely still there.  They don’t stop, but the things that I do in the cycles are minimal.  I’ll never be able to tame them full.  I’ve learned to be objective about things lately, so I can at least rationalize things to a point where I can try and stop some of the severe thoughts, but I do know that that statement doesn’t apply to everyone.  Everyone’s illness affects them differently, and some don’t have the means to cope with them like I do.  So, it can be rough for people.

Then I saw this quote which gave me a new goal to strive for:

“The true opposite of depression is neither gaiety nor absence of pain, but vitality – the freedom to experience spontaneous feelings. It is part of the kaleidoscope of life that these feelings are not only happy, beautiful, or good but can reflect the entire range of human experience, including envy, jealousy, rage, disgust, greed, despair, and grief.”  – Alice Miller

This leads me to explain the title of this post.  If you are into anime, you know that the title is part of a meaning of the “Ring Of The Sky” worn by Tsunayoshi Sawada, the main protagonist in the anime Katekiyo Hitman Reborn.  I relate greatly to his character in the sense that he eventually got over his shortcomings to protect his friends and family.  When Reborn hits him with the deathparation bullet early in the anime, he starts becoming more confident (well he had no choice, he’d die if he regreted anything).  Eventually, he rises up and becomes someone who he never thought he’d would ever become.  But I relate to him because I’m at a point now where I can fight the regrets that I have in my life.  I also have no clue what my best form looks like whatsoever.  This is because I always hold back something now.  Thus, I have a lot of regret in my heart.  I have to get over it somehow, and perhaps I have the tools to do just that.  I want to be able to have those spontaneous feelings, and not have to curse it on being bipolar for once.  I’ll fight to get there too.

Even now, though I do feel like a clown to the majority of people that I’ve interacted with since I’ve experienced downtown and the bar scene, I guess some people really do feel like I make their nights better.  Also, now, because of the high volume of people that I know, other people network and such, and that’s a cool thing that perhaps I can do.

I guess the big thing I want now, is to grow.  I was very careful with my words in this one, because I wanted my message to get out.  Even then, I’m still fighting.  I know that perhaps I’ll do something great someday, but I know that maybe getting out things like this, is a key step into doing those.