In May of 2011, I officially became “that girl” that everyone whispers about.
The crazy person. The psycho. The lunatic. The nut. The maniac. The deranged person.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar 2 Disorder after fighting with postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety for 3 years. The magnitude of the diagnosis forcefully shook the smooth path of life that I was desperately trying to get back on.
I watched as it bent and curved and crumbled.
It grew hills and jagged mountains.
The path, once full of promise, now looked vapid; felt hauntingly uninviting.
It was too loud and too quiet.
It was too bright and too dark.
It felt too euphoric and too depressed and too angry.
It was too peaceful and too whimsical.
All at the same time.
And that light I’d been trying to reach for with all of my being, the end of my battle against postpartum depression and anxiety, was thrown so far at the end of the confusion.
I was terrified and felt dreadfully alone.
But I am not alone.
Neither are you.
Having bipolar is nothing to be ashamed of. We are no different from anyone else with a medical illness. Mental illness is as real as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease and it should be treated as such with dignity, respect, prompt medical treatment, and support
We are not the illness.
The illness doesn’t define who we are..
I want you to know that you are worth every mountain that you may climb. You have to keep fighting and when you feel like you can’t, please remember that there will always be someone out there who will give you their strength, love, and hope.
There is always hope.
An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir Of Moods And Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison
Madness: A Bipolar Life by Mayra Hornbacher
Manic: A Memoir by Terri Cheney
Electroboy: A Memoir Of Mania by Andy Behrman