• Experience

    When things are good…

    For someone with bi-polar disorder, when things are good, there’s a constant underlying fear. It’s not a matter of if things will stop being good…it’s when. And sure, it’s really easy to say…just stop worrying about it. But for someone who’s been experiencing severe mood changes for more than half their life, that’s just not possible. I’ve even read such advice as: if you’d just stop worrying about the drops, you’d stop having them…it’s the constant focus on mood that causes the drops in the first place. Every day, I track my mood. I try to figure out triggers and avoid them. I try to determine the impacts of weather, the moon,…

  • Experience

    Busy Brains, Reflection, and Looking Forward

    I know from a distance, sometimes I might appear to my audience, when it comes to my personal life, like sort of a train wreck. I assure you that this is in some cases true. And the internet gets to see a lot more of that wreck than anyone in my real life does. Why? Because I’m an introvert and I have a busy brain…and in order not to explode or implode, I write. I write to learn, to teach, to explore, to explain, to play, to entertain, to inform, to inspire, to punish, to please… I also, because of this busy brain, do a lot of planning…maybe more planning…

  • Experience

    September is the Cruelest Month

    No, T.S. Eliot, April is not always the cruelest month. For some of us, it is September, when the leaves whisper the rumor of their upcoming change and a chill creeps into the early morning air. September is a complex conundrum for me. It means new beginnings (I am a teacher) and an influx of lofty expectations after a short, hot season of few. It means disappointing some of those I love because I am less available, both physically and mentally. It means that my creativity well must give the majority of its bounty to my paid work and not my unpaid hobby. Anyone out there with children and a…

  • Experience

    Demons Inside

    For those of you looking for an uplifting post today, you might want to travel elsewhere and come back to this another day. This post deals with issues of mental health, specifically bipolar disorder. It is a personal post. And I’m putting myself out there a bit, maybe out of guilt, maybe out of hope, maybe simply to be freed a little by the confession. Whatever the motive, and I’m not entirely sure what it is, I feel a need to write about it and to share it. For much of history, mental health issues have been hidden things – family secrets, shamed confessions, rumors, memoirs, and horror stories. More…

  • Experience

    We’re all mad here…

    I haven’t written in awhile. I write that statement as if you haven’t noticed. As if it isn’t simply painfully obvious. Actually, I write that statement as more of a guilty admission…sort of a “Forgive me Father for I have sinned…” opener. It’s the beginning of a confession. I’ve been feeling raw. For some time. And I didn’t quite understand it until just a few days ago. So, let me go there…and peel back a few layers. I don’t know how deep this will go, but I’m willing if you are. Sometimes, it’s just time for a little opening, even if it stings. Awhile back, I asked for some erotic…

  • Experience,  Poetry

    A four-poem year

    I like to keep the things I write so I can go back and consider who I was when I wrote them…at a distance…like an anthropologist. It is easier to investigate my faults from space rather than in the midst of committing them. Today, I went back and read the four poems I wrote this year. Yes, it’s been a four-poem year, which attests to the emotional drought that I have been living in. Usually, they pour forth, no matter how shitty or rough. But this year, the universe kept them in reserve – I’d like to think it was so I wouldn’t bend and twist the words to create…

  • Experience

    When the dark gives way to the growing light

    Several months ago, in a marriage counseling session, the counselor said something that resonated enough with me that I still remember it today. It was along the lines of, “Partnerships like marriage are meant to help you grow and change into a better person. The fact that it isn’t as easy to leave is what keeps you there during the hard times, but the work you put in to stay and develop is what curves your edges and builds you up.” Now I’m sure anyone could say the exact opposite and make it sound just as likely. After all, keeping marriages afloat is this woman’s bread and butter. I chose…

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