Bipolar Snowballs

bipolar self-talk maniabipolar self-talk depressionPeople with bipolar disorder often hide the disease, afraid of being misunderstood. I want to share a story that might help me, and others, to reveal this part of who we are. Let’s see what you think.

Mexican earthenware figures 600-900 AD
The Walters Art Museum · Works of Art
CC BY-SA 3.0 US

Self-Talk Power: my best friend and worst enemy

I noticed that the snow plow had been through to push back the tops of the high snowbanks. When it passed our house, it pushed an icy snowball that was 4 or 5 feet in diameter off of the top of the snowbank — right to the middle of the entrance to our driveway.

I couldn’t move it, partly because my head had been like a pinball machine all morning: if I moved too quickly or the wrong way, I would trigger the tilt switch, which would make a migraine leap into action.

I considered the possible times to call my husband at work, so he would be ready to clear the driveway when he came home: immediately, before I forgot? But then he might dread it all afternoon. What if I took a chance on remembering to call him as he’s ready to leave for home? But then I might forget, and he’d arrive home ready to relax.

Self-talk Snowball

I walked over to see how bad the situation was.The snowball was so round, I wondered if I could roll it. As I lifted one edge of it, pieces fell off, but I was able to push most of it out of the way. I was surprised by how little it weighed. I thought it must have been full of air pockets, like Styrofoam.

Bipolar Self-talk

See the remainder of the snowball after I had moved it

The snow plow had also pushed several inches of dense snow into the entrance to the driveway. The sun was shining brightly for a little while, but the temperature was too close to zero Fahrenheit for the snow to melt away. The snow would be much easier to move at that moment, compared with waiting for my husband to move it when he got home after a tiring day at work, with the temperature falling, and darkness settling in.

As I got a shovel, I wondered if I could move any snow. I wondered what happened to the migraine, and my tiredness and weakness. As I moved some snow, I was amazed that the full shovel loads were easy to lift and toss over the tops of the tall snow banks. Where did my strength come from? How could I do this after spending the past few months in bed in a depression?

I cleared the entire end of the driveway, one minute at a time, taking a break after each minute: stand still, eyes closed, breathe, tune in, and decide whether to continue. This is what I heard myself saying:

I can do anything, if I just do it. All of these months, I wasted a lot of time lying around, focusing on what I couldn’t do, when I could have just gotten up and done what I could do. What a relief! I finally beat this bipolar thing! I am such a strong person. Anyone else’s body would have atrophied by now. My body is built like a bull. I know how to use body mechanics to do hard work. This feels so good. I used to know that I could do absolutely anything, and here I am, doing it again. I am glad to be the familiar Me again. I love being out in the sun, breathing the fresh air, working my muscles, doing something nice for someone else. I forgot how much control I have over what I can do. I just need to remember to focus on what I can do, and just do it. I have no idea why I ever think I can’t do a certain something. There’s nothing I can’t do. I’ve proven that over and over…

Redirecting the Self-Talk

Finally, I remembered my therapist advising me, many times, to do just a little at a time when energy floods my blood, rather than riding the entire wave of opportunity, and then entirely exhausting myself. Finally, I remembered my psychiatrist looking at me with astonishment as I mentioned being in bed all day for weeks and then very suddenly running up and down flights of stairs and being happily very busy doing many things all at once and keeping track of them all, and he asked me how someone like me, who is intelligent and sensible, could be so unreasonable about overdoing it when I became energized, aka hypomanic.

Finally, I realized that being out of bed for a couple of hours was strenuous enough for me for one day for right now. I saw many things I wanted to do, but forced myself to bed. I wanted to stay up and be busy. Instead, I called my husband to check my judgment. He reminded me that I accomplished a lot that day, and that I needed to rest so I wouldn’t feel like I got hit by a Mack truck. Oh. Yeah. I had forgotten about that Mack truck that shows up and runs me down after a surge of energy in the middle of a depression. After hypomania sweeps me away, I feel as if a brick wall fell on me. So, this time, I set myself to staying in bed, and then a wave of exhaustion overwhelmed me, and I was ready to settle down for the rest of the day.

How might someone as intelligent and sensible as I remember to take it easy when a wave of energy comes along? How does a wave make me so muscular? Sometimes, when I get one of those waves, I remember to ride it carefully, slowly and deliberately, but often I become extremely busy and irritable as I cling to the face of the wave until it crashes on the beach, and leaves me there depleted, as limp as a rag doll, and miserable.

Bipolar Snowballs

So, I need to rest a lot right now. When I find myself calmly up and around doing things without thinking about it, or when I am continuously aware of my limitations, maybe that’s a taste of “normal”. When I see my ability to do everything that I think of, maybe that should smell fishy. I’m getting better at recognizing the difference.

Bipolar might be like the snow plow that left a large snowball at the end of our driveway. Sometimes, we don’t notice the snowball. Sometimes, we can roll the big obstacle out of the way, and then overcome more obstacles. Sometimes, we continue shoveling away with unlimited energy, until we inadvertently and inevitably step in front of a Mack truck, and it flattens us.

What does your self-talk sound like? How do you recognize its nonsense, and overpower it? When do you find it helpful?

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53 thoughts on “Bipolar Snowballs

  1. Thank you for sharing this story, Grace. I have suffered from the down side of bipolar and have known many who live in both extremes. I had to learn to adjust my self-talk to deal…still do at times.

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    1. 🙂 I enjoy visiting the same places as you, Ker, especially when that place helps us to believe in ourselves. May your voice of belief in yourself out-scream all of your fears and doubts.

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  2. Oh Grace. This is stunning writing! I mean truly breathtaking!!!! I have reread it three times now. The title first of all, let’s start there. Encapsulates so much. I immediately thought of how mood swings (I am so aligned with you here though not formally diagnosed, because I know how to answer “their” diagnostic questions the right way so I won’t get medicated. I’m terrified of those meds and the side effects) can snowball so easily and before you know it, they’re larger than life. And then your ending tying it all together, with the snowplow leaving the snowball which can either go unnoticed, or the other options, heavens no….the mack truck! I loved this piece, Grace. You really don’t realize how many people you have helped by posting this. More, more, more – – from the same place deep inside that this came from.
    xo
    Stephanie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Stephanie, I know what you mean about the diagnostic questions, and side effects of meds. I finally now control what meds I take. I am working with professionals who share the idea that healing with thoughts, foods and supplements help, since those play a part in regulating our biochemistry. Way better than meds by themselves. I haven’t been able to feed myself well or think clearly without meds, though.

      Thank you for all of your support, Stephanie. I want my writing to come from the center of my heart, and feed the hearts of all of my readers. Thank you again for helping to unlock the vault where this post was hiding, especially with your post http://thequotegal.wordpress.com/2014/02/26/the-write-way-to-die/.

      Much love,
      Grace

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    1. Thank you Maggie. I really appreciate your stopping by and leaving a note.

      I was disoriented when I got to your blog. Did you completely remodel, or did I just enter through a different door?

      I am glad that your writing has been so cathartic for you. I look forward to reading more. You touch on so many different issues!

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      1. Oops – sorry for the confoundment. Yes, I did remodel. Though I like a minimal look, I found the old theme TOO stark. As for the assortment of topics, it looks like my blog is going to be one of THOSE anything under the sun types.

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        1. Not a problem, Maggie. I wandered along a few hallways and found some familiar rooms. Then, I realized: same address, different wallpaper. I like the way it coordinates with the mineral theme of your gravatar and subtitle.

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  3. It is so hard at times to recognise those spurts of hyper behaviour. For years I worked around them (or so I thought). In PR there are times when a client has a project that can take so much of your life. I would work round the clock, organising and then overseeing the events. No one stopped me as I was one of the few who were able to write on demand if something arose that need immediate media spin as well as no one else was dumb enough to do that to themselves. After I would take 3 to 5 days off as a break but what no one knew is that for those days I rarely left the bed for anything other than food or bathroom breaks.

    Then I would polish myself back up and move on to the next project. I honestly thought I was doing well and that I had a nice working balance in my life (denial is a wonderful thing isn’t it?). I won awards for my work and had numerous job offers from clients who wanted me to work with them full-time.

    It was fine and dandy until life threw about 5 or 6 truly difficult emotional curveballs my way and it was then that my ‘balanced’ life came to a crashing halt. So you have my utmost admiration in recognising something it took tearing my life apart for me to admit. I will catch you round the blogging world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Jenni, thank you for sharing your story. It sounds very familiar to me – no surprise? – being a brilliant star, and then crashing into a black hole. I’m glad, and sorry, that you can relate. I’m wondering how your life came to a crashing halt.

      The rhythm of PR sounds like a great profession for someone with bipolar. You were able to work as a contractor? Perfect! I, too, tried believing that bipolar was a way of being in tune with the natural rhythms of a balanced life. I don’t think life meant us to be incapacitated in hibernation, crashed into down time.

      Jenni, like you, my life was torn apart by bipolar, both mine and (what I deduct was) my parents’. I recognize my swings happening when I was in puberty with ferocious tantrums and intense focus on projects interspersed with weeks on the sofa, staring into nothingness and forgetting that I ever did anything of value for anyone.

      I look forward to seeing you again at Stephanie’s, and wherever else we bump into each other.

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      1. How did my life finally implode let’s see, my husband left me for someone 10 years younger than me after I put him through law school. At the time I was only 28 so it was a huge ego blow. I had resigned from my job at Qld Bulls Cricket as Marketing Manager (and he let me even knowing he was leaving) as I had planned to return to study full time while my husband worked.

        I was left with a young son, trying to find contractual PR and Marketing work at a time when those fields were hit by the new GST tax, looking for somewhere new to live and generally feeling like crap. That wasn’t what broke me however.

        I had been severely assaulted years before and barely escaped with my life. I had never really dealt with it, just shoved it inside and kept going. All the added stress meant that any shielding I had crumbled and I was thrust in PTSD with the added bonus of anxiety attacks leaving me unable to leave the house.

        All of that did WONDERS for my mental health and I spiralled right down. It took me years to rebuild and this time I worked with my problems rather than around them.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh, Jenni! You have quite the bouquet of triggers there!

          I honor the clarity that you have for seeing the triggers. That is one of my most important tools. Triggers are so easy to overlook or dismiss as just a few snowflakes, instead of as the Mack Trucks that they are.

          I am wishing you and your son all of the best.

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  4. Thank you for your post. I think people with mental health issues do need to talk about them if they can, to help reduce the stigma. I have ADD (which sometimes I wonder if it isn’t mild bipolar in disguise; thinking of a day a few weeks ago where I just couldn’t get out of bed) and have been ridiculed and mocked and generally made to feel bad, but I keep letting people know I have it because it shouldn’t be a joke or a label. I think the more people talk about these things the more we can help others feel ok with a diagnosis, feel ok getting help, and feel that there are people who understand and won’t judge. So thank you for being so open about what you’re going through.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. jmgajda! I LOVE your approach of protecting yourself from ridicule and mockery by telling people that you have ADD, instead of the other way around. I mean, how many people are afraid that if they reveal their diagnosis, they will be ridiculed and mocked?

      I agree with you: I felt such a sense of relief when I was diagnosed and could then explain to my closest family and friends (and myself) why I was so weird, so they could better accept who I was.

      However, revealing it to my neighbors and acquaintances is much more difficult: I absolutely expect them to misjudge me if I do. Therefor, revealing this part of me here was quite a challenge. Why did I do it? Because I am finding that concealing it is making me feel weak and dishonest, and because this story seems to be of great interest to people who want to understand what some people with bipolar are going through.

      I am really glad that you found this post useful. Thank you for letting me know. If it is really useful, please send more people to read it 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you for sharing how difficult it is to let neighbors and acquaintances know. I also feel apprehensive when I casually mention I have ADD, but I think it’s harder if someone has depression, bipolar, schizophrenia because people have SO many misconceptions about what that means. They don’t understand that you can’t “think” your way out of it. You know, ’cause it’s so easy to tell yourself to stop being depressed, like it’s easy to tell yourself not to have Diabetes, or arthritis.

        It’s frustrating that I never know if someone will be accepting or not, but considering the range of responses I’ve had I’m pretty much prepared for anything these days.

        I think you’re really brave to be so open about what you’re going through and I will definitely recommend this post to anyone else who’s going through something similar.

        Ok, now I’m going to poke around your blog!

        🙂

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        1. Jessica, you certainly know the arguments about diabetes and arthritis. Ain’t it the truth.

          Like bipolar, etc, you can’t “think” your way out of ADD either. You can use all the time management tools in the world, and Brain exercises, and snap rubber bands on your wrist, and you will still have ADD and its challenges.

          I waited until these wise old years before I could let someone judge me negatively without ruining my life. I would like to represent people with bipolar, to clear up some stigma and misunderstanding, but I still hide behind my facade. Maybe I am too weird to clear up any misunderstanding. Maybe I’m so weird, I will reinforce misunderstandings. I’m still learning to speak the language of someone who has a socially unaccepted feature. If I wear a Bipolar sign, people will judge me before they know me. If I let them know after they have gotten to know me, then I worry that they will see me as weak and untrustworthy. When is the right moment?

          Jessica, I admire your courage to be who you are and let others see it. Keep shining!

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          1. Grace,

            You are definitely not too weird to clear up or to reinforce stereotypes! I’ve found over the years that some of the most ‘normal’ seeming people can have shocking secrets! I wish I could spill but it would be terribly wrong of me. Suffice to say, ‘normal’ really is a magic land where no one actually exists, but most people pretend they do.

            When is the right moment? I generally get to know people a little first and then make a casual reference to it. Sometimes people are understanding, sometimes not. I prepare myself for the worst, and hope for the best! I guess I’d rather know sooner rather than later if someone is going to be unkind about my ADD before I let myself trust them as a friend.

            And I’ve had friends before who had bipolar and my husband has had issues with social anxiety and major depression. No one comes in a neat package, thank goodness. Life would be so boring if we did.

            Thanks for all the positivity. I’m really enjoying your blog!

            🙂

            Liked by 3 people

            1. Dear Jessica, I love your definition of “normal”. That deserves to be on a poster!

              Hey, “prepare for the worst, hope for the best” is one of my mottos, too!

              That “casual reference” is something I want to learn. Yes, people’s responses speaks volumes about who they are, not who I am, so I have gotten better about letting my neighbors and acquaintances know when I am having difficulty, especially when I am feeling down. I still don’t like to use the label “bipolar”. After all, that label just describes a number of possible symptoms, not any cause of the disease. But, in order to help overcome the misunderstanding, I know I must use the word.

              A couple of weeks ago, I casually let a friend know that I have been diagnosed with bipolar. My radar zoomed in on her as my gaze appeared to drift away. She didn’t respond. The conversation continued as if I hadn’t said the B word. Maybe she didn’t consider it noteworthy. Maybe she didn’t know how to respond. I brushed it off as if the diagnosis didn’t matter. The important thing is that she has kept in touch.

              The movie “Rent” is one of my favorites. Lately, I especially appreciated the part of the story in which Roger and Mimi revealed to each other a secret that was keeping them apart, and which then brought them together.

              Thank you for your sweet kindness, Jessica. Your packaging is quite neat.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Grace,

                I think it’s a good sign that your friend has kept in touch. You’re right, maybe she just didn’t know how to respond, but really, the best response is when relationships continue as though nothing has changed.

                And thank you. You’re packaging is quite neat as well! I’m going to kill two birds with one stone and include Stephanie in this comment because her packaging is also very supportive and much appreciated!

                🙂

                Liked by 1 person

  5. This is the COOLEST thing – – that some of the gravitars I love to see most are right here in one “room,” centered around one central potent topic! I cannot even the imagine the power to be harnessed if we actually sat in a supportive circle of chairs in a living room in real life! I’ll bring the cookies!
    love you ladies!
    Stephanie

    Liked by 3 people

  6. ps. Grace – – the reason I came back here was to tell you i came across this little snippet in my readings today,

    “The newest addition is the ability to enable likes on comments > Dashboard > Settings > Sharing. I’m worried about enabling it because comments are not easy to get, and knowing one’s comment can be judged liked or not may be an obstacle to submitting a comment at all. Does this worry you?”

    but looks like you’ve already got it figured?? So now – – does that worry concern you too?

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    1. Dear Stephanie, I glanced at your question this morning, and thought about it. No. It does NOT worry me.

      If someone sees the “Like this” star and is afraid of being judged, then they probably won’t hit the Post Comment button either. I think that WordPress was wise to make it a Like this star, not +/- buttons. After all, we blog owner/administrators can delete anything, including individual comments and parts of comments.

      Yes, I found the Like this star option when I was in my Settings trying to connect google+ with my blog…again. I’m on my way over to the WordPress forum to see if anyone left any suggestions or explanations.

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  7. An unmerited gift….between your comments on my blog and posts like this one, you truly live up to your name, Grace.

    In an effort to respond, and at the same time, not hijack your blog, if it’s all right with you, I would like to reblog this and add my own surprisingly long response over at my place.

    Thank you again for telling a bit of my story. Now let’s see if I can live up to the challenge by telling a bit of my own. I may have to rewrite my blog description before I am finished, lol.

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  8. Unmerited? Surely, you jest! You know that I think your blog belongs in the public eye.

    YES you can reblog this post. I feel honored by your request. I look forward to reading your response, and hope everyone else here will, too. Hooray! I’m glad this inspired you, even if you think I’m full of it and you want to put my perspective through the shredder. I also welcome you to “hijack” my blog to save people the trip to your blog 😉

    I had talked with a friend about whether issues such as this one belonged in our own blogs. I came to realize that it is a social justice issue. I imagine that you see it as a civil liberties/human rights issue.

    When you publish your post, you may promote it here shamelessly! Then, I will remind our readers of what you wrote on your About page:
    “When I used to teach, I would beg my students, when filling out surveys, to be as nit picky as possible. I told them that I couldn’t improve if all they did was tell me what a great class I had taught.”

    When you reblog, WordPress automatically sends me a notice, and I let that be posted on my blog for all to see and click on. Enjoy writing!

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    1. Funny…you said ‘When you used to teach…” I used to teach and begged of my students the same. that desire to improve on whatever others said was already perfect….where do you think that comes from?

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  9. Reblogged this on Uncivil Liberties and commented:
    Grace suggested that I would, perhaps, see this as a Civil/Human rights issue. Of course, I’m much too shallow to have come up with that. I was just moping about in my own selfish little world. But it is…so many people are fearful to acknowledge their own mental illness, or conversely, those who come across us don’t know how to respond or what to say when they are informed about – or worse, confronted by our disease. Yes, it can be embarrassing. continued at Uncivil Liberties

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dear Christopher, I hope you are OK with me editing the way your re-blog showed up at my post. My intent is to drive traffic to your blog to read the entirety of your post.

      “We need to educate the population…” That is a tall order, yet one we can do something about.

      Great story about the group home. Thanks for reminding us to look for opportunities in places that we don’t appreciate until we stop and smell the flowers.

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      1. TG you did…LOL. I had no clue how much had spewed out until I posted it. I can get so lost writing, that I have no idea what sort of monster Ive created until afterward, when it’s being chased down by the villagers with pitchforks and torches…

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  10. Hi Grace, you have this wonderful ability to take what would normally be a cause for social withdrawal and write about it so wonderfully that it becomes a rallying point, where people can come together and lose their self-conscious behavior and acknowledge their conditions.

    Your blog post itself is mind blowing, but I also found gems in the comment section. You know a bit of my story, I’m encouraged that there are people out there who “reached dizzy heights” and are able to acknowledge that their condition brought them down. I have struggled with that for what seems like a life-time. I was busy climbing my own corporate ladder when depression caused me to implode. I know what staying in bed for days at a time feels like when the world is incessantly demanding your attention. I’m still dealing with that. With the desire to alter my state of consciousness just a little so things are easy on my brain… Thank you for sharing so generously and so courageously.

    I’ve been reluctant to launch my mental health blog, but if I keep it together till I manager to, may I please reblog this?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Syd, I’m so glad you stopped by again. I have been wondering how you have been, realizing that my sense of time is a little different than others’. I mean it seems to me like forever since I’ve “seen” you around, but I see that you are in my inbox, waiting ever so patiently for me to come around.

      Your post No Easy Victories is the catapult that launched this one, you know. You taught me a lot about how to share my secret.

      I will be absolutely HONORED if you reblog this, whether you decide to launch a separate mental health blog, or add to your Overcoming Depression category, You must know that your blog and writing are treasures.

      I thank everyone here for the gems that they contribute to each other in the comments sections here and elsewhere. I am glad that I found this part of the WordPress community. Commenters Unite!

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  11. My father was bipolar. My sister and I are not. For him it became known to us, his children, when we were both adults. I left home at 20 and mostly lived away from home Trinidad, B.C.,, Cheshire, England and 350 miles away. Wish I had lived and been closer. I am prone to mood swings and one of my four adult children is bipolar, too. Like you, she is intelligent about it and dedicated to do what she must to live her life productively and happily. Reading your excellent post helps me to understand my family and myself better. Thank you. We all, if we care, do what we can to distil “who we are” into what is essential and to be graceful to ourselves. It’s taken me a long time to appreciate that. Thanks again.

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  12. Makes me want to talk more to my daughter about what she, and I, go through. When my kids were growing up they feared me and, fortunately, loved me. My rage at inanimate objects (which substituted for my own perceived failings) was an awesome thing to behold. (The word “awesome” correctly used here). The outbursts didn’t last long, but were enough to wipe out the good things I did for them. Yelling was frequent. I could be singing with, or reading to, them and ruin all that a day later with one silly, stupid outburst. I tended to look at the dark side of everything (still do, when it comes to politics – and for good reason) and the big, dark picture can be conjured up so quickly that I don’t even see it coming. Mostly it comes out, these days, as quiet swearing which is still no picnic for my patient wife to endure given my history. Have had long talks with my four kids (now in their 30’s and 40’s) about my rage and I am getting better now. Mellowing with age, perhaps? They, somehow, still love me and we get along well now. It has taken a lot of self-examination to get here. I tried many things through the years – except meds. The one thing that has stayed with me is Tai Chi, which I recently have combined with Tonglen meditation and exercise in a rather unorthodox way. The work ahead for me now is to become more constantly aware that many of the triggers are false and self-generated. Suffering for me comes from guilt. It comes also from anxiety created by trying to hold on to things that are changing that are not only beyond my control but, as the Buddhists would put it, illusionary. Buddhist belief that even the “I” – the concept of separate self – is illusion is one part of that awareness to which I aspire.

    I posted a little about my Tai Chi, Tonglen, and exercise “routine” below. It might seem silly but it is helping me.

    http://mightyturk.wordpress.com/2012/11/24/tonglen-with-tai-chi/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Stimulating Discussions Solve Problems. Thank you for sharing your stories of your challenges and growth. That is why I’m here. I feel completely rewarded by your desire to talk with your daughter about what she and you go through. Now you are accountable to my readers and me. Let us know how it goes?

      I know the feeling of outrage and how it disrupts what I value. I have seen caution in my children after my outbursts. I know the sense of relief when I found that I could trust myself to feel peaceful and behave rationally. Congratulations on what you have achieved.

      I was a big fan of Tai Chi for several years, until it became a bipolar trigger for me. Grrrrrr. I deeply enjoyed it and miss it. I am looking up Tonglen meditation. Wow. Maybe that is worth me looking into. Thank you for sharing your Tonglen post. Now I am accountable to you, and must let you know how it goes?

      LIke Buddhists, I am a big fan of the concept of unity: that we are all one. Therefor, when one is hurt, we are all hurt, thus my passionate interest in Social Justice. This also helps me justify my effort in my own healing.

      Thank you for contributing.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you for the blog! It is so relatable, and it is so nice (and horrible at the same time) to know that other people get it. You explain it so well.

    I just posted another blog about something that we previously touched on in our comments and couldn’t help but do a shout out to you! Just thought I should let you know, if you would rather I took it down then please let me know. Nothing bad, just a shout out.

    http://illicitbynature.com/2014/03/19/i-swear-depression-generates-indecision/

    I look forward to your next blog!

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  14. How can I resist being called “brilliant and brave”, especially when someone so dear is shouting out for help? 🙂 No need to take it down for me. I’m working on a response. See you there soon.

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  15. My self talk is rapid fire craziness most times. I’ve not experience bi-polar disorder (at least not that I’m aware of) but I thought a few years back that my son, who was previously diagnosed with ADHD, had bi-polar. He has these crazy mood shifts that are sometimes a little scary although as he’s gotten older he doesn’t seem as bad.

    I’ve dealt with depression and at times I thought maybe I was misdiagnosed and I’ve wished for normalcy but it still feels unattainable.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ADHD is very similar to bipolar. Remember that diagnoses are simply like saying that someone’s thumb is black, with no explanation of the reason. It could be from gardening, car oil, fabric dye, falling in a puddle, etc. A blue thumb could be from hair dye, paint, cold, etc, Let’s say that ADHD is a black thumb. Let’s say that bipolar is a blue thumb. What might cause a black and blue thumb?

      My analogy is spinning off down the road: sometimes people can easily change the color of their thumbs, sometimes it is very difficult, sometimes impossible, and sometimes unnecessary. I’ll stop there for now.

      Best wishes to you and your son.

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  16. I am just stopping by (again!) to my fave page to reread and reassure (myself) Having a hard weekend. It’s 1:44 in the morning now. I’ve received all your emails, and will be responding soon. Just needed a little self-soothing which this page does for me. Thanks Grace.

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  17. You are so insightful and introspective. It is impressive. Really. It is also so brave of you to put this out here and I am certain, immensely helpful to other people. Such an incredibly difficult roller coaster to ride on but you are taking the controls apart and making it ride on your terms, Hooray!! What great work~

    Like

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