Ok, I said I’d post again later, and here I am.
Basically, today I want to write down what I’ve already written in my journal- what the fuck is it that I have?
I have assumed I have just been depressed since being a young teenager. I always used to get far more sad than other people very easily, and I would react in a hurt way to jokes most other people would find amusing, or shrug off easily. I was the prime target for bullies as a child, and teenager, because of my ‘posh’ accent, my ‘geekiness’, and the fact that you could never get my head out of a book.
However, I remember when a very close friend of mine was diagnosed with bipolar. I remember not giving a damn. I remember being really upset for the fun, happy, outgoing girl I knew, with her dreams of boyfriends, tattoos, and her multi-coloured hair. We both used to permanently be hyperactive, have the same ridiculous in-jokes, and we’d watch the same films and laugh so hard. I couldn’t equate that fun- loving girl with the one who’d written to me, saying she’d been ‘cutting herself with knives,’ apparently really deep. Now we both know that this was early signs of her bipolar, which is now being treated with psychotherapy and Lithium. I love her so much, and I knew the minute the word ‘bipolar’ was mentioned, she sure as hell wouldn’t lose this friend.
I remember her talking about the times she’d seen things. One time she was in a train station, and the patterned tiles on the floor rearranged themselves to spell ‘kill yourself’. This kept me up at night- I missed that girl who’d sing through Phantom of the Opera with me, and I couldn’t imagine her suffering as she watched the world turn against her. How could she bear it all?
It was beyond me.
All the while, I was having my mental crashes and then speeding along the highway of life at 2000000000 miles per hour. I used to worry for my lovely bipolar friend, and at the same time be slicing my calves open with knives. Monday was worst, the resolve to quit building til the Sunday, where I’d go back to the knife with abandon. I’m surprised I’m not scarred as obviously on my calves: I’ve had one single person ask me where those scars on my calves came from, and that was a person I hate. I’ve written about him a lot. You all know his misdeeds by now.
I remember whilst my friend was on her bipolar highs our manic phone conversations. I remember my parents and hers, and our sisters, not understanding a single word of what was said between us. We’d both speak so fast and in a language completely unknown to most people that they’d lose thread, but we never would. We were on it!
I used to always describe myself as crazy, manic, hyper, fun-loving. I made some very stupid decisions whilst I was younger, always wondering how my lovely friend H lived with being mentally ill. We never spoke of my times of crisis, purely because I thought her situation was far worse than mine and she needed the support, not me. She was a diagnosed manic-depressive: a poor girl with bipolar disorder. I had nothing but my love and support to offer her, and as much life advice as I could give her, being younger and totally not qualified in any way to help.
This time round when I crashed, I instantly thought of H. Whilst (yes, I know this is beyond stupid) taking a depression test on the internet (warned you! I am a complete twit) my scores registered a high probability of my having bipolar.
I sat there, thinking that this was ridiculous. I was depressed. I had none of the symptoms of…
Ah, crap on a stick. Wait a second.
I’ve always seen things others couldn’t. Some of it is (please scoff if you want) ghosts, spirits that I have seen whilst I have been with others and they have felt or seen something too. I should also explain that I am not frightened when I see ghosts- when I have more patience, I’ll write more about that. However, some of it is not. I have seen (most recently) an eye glaring down from the ceiling where the lamp should have been. I have seen spiders, or spider-like things, massed and crawling around the ceiling. I have seen, as both an adult and a child, the walls and floor moving in ways that weren’t labyrinthitus (a highly odd inner ear infection I had at age 15, where the world looks like you are under the water in a swimming pool after having taken acid). I never thought this was a symptom of mental illness… but apparently, it is. The worst thing I have seen was a huge man, as tall as a lamp post, standing at the end of a street I have walked past for years, with giant arms and no face. I had been watching Slenderman videos beforehand, I will admit, but even a fertile imagination shouldn’t have been able to show me that as if it was there in real life. I mean, I could even see the fingers. It was horrible. Long and pale and-
At any rate, what with this, my high moods, and my crashes… all I could think of was H.
So I rang her. After a long conversation, where I spilled out everything I’d never told her… the insomnia, the self-harm, the mental pain… She sat there, listening to a friend she’s had since being tiny, tell her she hated herself, hated her life and wanted to die.
She was amazing. H is one of those people that will tell you how it is, but not scare you. She was reassuringly practical, telling me about all the things I might experience. She said that I might need medication. She thought I had to get to a doctor and report my symptoms as soon as possible. She also thought I might very well have bipolar, or something similar, but she wasn’t about to diagnose it as she wasn’t a doctor.
Again, that word.
So here I am now. I love H so much, and I am so grateful that she told me straight that she thinks I might have bipolar. I don’t mind that she isn’t a doctor, and I am glad she warned me of what might come.
I know I might not be. I could have PTSD (a strong likelihood) or depression, or BPD… or I could just be good at getting sad, in which case there is no hope for me.
At any rate…… this is a massive long ramble of what I might have. I will rationalise the other two things later.
Right now, I’m wondering whether bipolar is what I have, or that I just don’t fit any bill, and I’ll always be this way. Gods help me if that is the case.
PS: Thank you so so much for all your support. You have all been amazing.