Monthly Archives: September 2016

When The Sandman Leaves

One of the strongest indicators of being in hypomania and feeling it grow stronger is the sudden inability to sleep.  Routine sleep is critical for those with bipolar disorder, and I make every effort to keep a regular schedule.  I take my medication at 8pm and it kicks in around 10pm.  Once, I lie down, it takes about 30 minutes to sleep.  However, when hypomania appears the sandman leaves.  When the sandman leaves, I stay awake until the sun rises.  Since I am in hypomania and not mania, I do not spend my evening painting or writing; rather, I just lie in the dark.  Thoughts of the day run through my mind and other hours I just lie in bed with a quiet mind.  I keep my eyes close, but sometimes I open them and look at my hands in the dark.  Stare off in the veil of darkness that cocoons my room safe and warm.  I do not know how I lie in bed for hours til dawn.  I just do.  I suspect I do go into a light sleep, but in the morning, I wake exhausted for a few hours.  The exhaustion passes and I become alert again.

I did not sleep last night and suspect tonight I will stay awake.  I feel very alert right now.  This is the other indicator.  I am not dragging at all, but I do make it a practice to lie in the dark to allow my body to rest.  When the morning comes, I have to go to work.  When I go to work, but do not sleep, I can function at work, but I can not exercise afterwards because it seems to daunting.  Tomorrow, I had planned to play against a tennis wall, but I do not think I will have the energy.  I come home and try to stay calm and peaceful since I know I am in hypomania.  Back in the day, I would have gone out and drank alcohol.  Nowadays, I am more disciplined in my self care.  Human interaction can become intense, and I am able to maintain a calm distance and protect myself until the hypomania wanes.  It crashes into me in waves even on my low dose medication treatment.

Tonight, was different.  I ended up pleasantly talking on the phone with my boyfriend until we started discussing politics and the recent debate.  It became very uncomfortable and intense.  We disagreed on the presidential nominees and voiced our opinions strongly.  I kept saying “let us agree to disagree,” but he would not let it go.  I felt negatively judged and really bad for how I was thinking.  It was horrible.  I came crashing down left in shock.  My eyes felt like the size of giant saucers making the lights brighter.  My mouth went dry and I lost my appetite.  I was in a kind of shock.  Hypervigilant and uneasy was how I was left.  This is what happens when you lose sight of how your mood is affecting you.  I knew I had not been sleeping and should have immediately and politely hung up or changed the divert with some levity.  These are lessons learned.  I had not been sleeping and new I was vulnerable.  It is during these times that I really have to not say much or engage in charged topics.  During these phases, I have to stay vigilant but not hypervigilant which causes mayhem too.  It is a delicate balance, but I do know when I do not sleep, I have to lie low.

After I hung up, I cried and then sat staring at the TV.  Just feeling so bad about a conversation that went so wrong.  I could not eat nor drink.  I just sat there.  Now, I cannot sleep.  My blogging is a nice escape.  I am not concerned with destabilizing because of my med, but I am in distress. For the rest of the evening, I will listen to my favorite comedian Bill Burr podcast and hope my words for this blog will flow.  I have many thoughts running over and over in my mind about what we said about people who do not even matter.  The shock.  Tonight, I will not lie in the dark.  I will allow my shock and hypomania to engulf me and stay busy, but I will not drink alcohol.

 

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The Mother F@#%er

It had been a long day in the office and my morning started off fair enough until it ended with my colleague’s forgetfulness about a meeting.  The meeting was very important, and I had left on time for it.  I walked for 20 minutes down the street to the location and entered the modern building.  It had a grey, spacious interior that made you feel physically small amidst the soaring walls.  I checked in with the receptionist and stated the name of the meeting I was attending.  She looked through her list and informed me that my meeting wasn’t on the list and asked if I would like to walk through the meeting rooms and check.  Against the loud “NO” in my mind, I entered anyway because I’m trying to not be isolated and live outside my comfort zone.  One thing that triggers anxiety for me is being lost.  It becomes a tidal wave of discomfort and panic if I’m not careful.  I entered the hallway feeling lost but keeping it under control by telling myself that I was ok and taking deep easy breathes.  I cleared my mind as I walked aimlessly down the hallway checking in on rooms where meetings were starting to take place.  After not finding my meeting, I left.  Relief filled me up as I left that hallway and then quickly escaped the building.  I was outside in the fresh air and relaxed as I headed back to my office.  Another 20 minute walk which was quite ok because I was outside and free.

I returned to my office and asked my colleague about the meeting and he casually said, “oh, that was cancelled.  Didn’t I tell you? I guess I forgot to forward you the email.”  I pushed my irritation down and tried not to dwell on it.  I casually responded, “oh, that’s ok.”  But it wasn’t ok.  The anxiety that I had to experience due to his laziness was almost unforgivable.  Oh, the work place – a functioning mental ward of the uninspired.

I met my boyfriend after work, and we walked out of work together and there was still a chill in the air.  I was wearing my favorite faux fur coat and walking with the man I love.  It was a wonderful.  It always wonderful to be with him, and I have to pinch myself everyctime we are together.  Our chit chat, as we walked to the car, masked the fact that I was irritated by my colleagues oversight.  People passed by and the sound of traffic grew louder as we got closer to the intersection.   The loudness of the traffic triggered me to be more irritable at the thought of the cancelled meeting.  My chatter continued about my work day all the way to the car.  Comfortably enclosed in our space, I explained exactly how I walked to the building only to find out that it had been cancelled.  Then I explained that my colleague “That MotherFucker forgot to tell me.  My boyfriend is opposite of the more fiery me.  He does not curse and uses a tamer language to express himself.  “That MotherFucker forgot to tell me the meeting was cancelled,” I blurted out as we drove down the freeway.  He said, “Well…. that doesn’t make him a “motherfucker.” I mean that word is used for a more serious situation.”  “No!” I declared.  The word completely describes my colleague “He’s, a motherfucker.” My boyfriend said, “You use that word if someone attacks you and you pull out a knife and stab him in the face and then you yell “You motherfucker!””  I said, “If I were to wait to use Motherfucker like that then I would never get to use it, and it’s a great word.  It describes my colleague – that Motherfucker!”