We often have to come back to it. Why should we otherwise be swayed to believe about ourselves some divergent sense of falsehood; this often knocking the creative breath out of us as if we were winded, stammering for inspiration whilst clamoring on canvas.

In an acute manic state, the depression and crazy can be characterized by overly gregariousness of the individual. They become extraordinarily outgoing and do not realize whether their company is good or bad. This could be quite dangerous as getting in touch with some unwanted and unethical people can also land up in several irreversible problems such as sexual exploits, henceforth pregnancy, sexual diseases, or hampered relationships.

They will tell you over and over that you are their savior and you wonder why this incredible person hasn’t already found the love of his/her life. And you are thanking your lucky stars for the relationship. There is an irony though, they have little or no self-worth. They build and improve their self worth on their relationship with you. And even a stranger irony is that you too might easily build and improve your self-worth based on having this relationship.

This is one of the reasons why it’s so vital to write about it, to bring it out into the open so that people come to understand exactly what it is. and not to be afraid of coming forward and seeking treatment if they think it’s a condition from which they’re suffering.

My vascular surgeon showed me the pictures. It looked like an alien baby was growing on my aorta just below the area of my belly button. Dozens of tendrils snaked out from a central area. The doctor explained that the flow of blood to my pelvis and legs was being blocked and I couldn’t walk because all those muscles were starved for oxygen. This was called claudication. He scheduled surgery.

Our family was sitting toward the back of the crowd, but we kids didn’t mind. We were ready to eat, not hear someone talk about his brother, no matter how famous they both were. The microphones carried the voices of the people in front, though, and we heard someone ask the famous man to make his speech.

Life is full of hardships, including illness. We don’t have to like them but we do need to own them. I have asthma, a temperamental back, and a bum hip. I also have dark hair, a love of gardening and an affection for my electric blanket on cold, winter nights. This is who I am. If you have cancer or lupus or need dialysis, don’t stuff this part of you into the shadows. You are who you are and every experience adds to the picture. Believe me, I am not saying that there is some magical gift to be found in your illness (although sometimes that does happen). But I am saying that you need to wrap your arms around ALL of yourself – even the parts that you wish were different.

An unwell mind will normalize eventually. She will return to her baseline and be just as in love with Jack as she always was, except now- she has this laundry list of whatever horrible things she’s said and done to him while she was severely unwell. And at this point, most of us Bipolars will be watching the ashes of yet another important thing in our lives slip through our fingers. A number of us will go silent on the matter if we don’t understand our illness very well because what can you say? What could make up for those horrible actions? “I’m sorry” is often a pale shadow compared to the wound.