They sit on the floor of her bedroom, over by the corner of the bed. There’s a blanket over her head and she is crying. It has been another poor day. Another day of unexplained moodiness and temper tantrums. She describes it as feeling the emotions come up from her toes and then burst out of her mouth like fire and flames. Something that she has no control of. It leaves her in pieces. Left with the feeling of shame and sorrow. With the intense need to self harm.
Her mother coaxes her to remove the blanket from her head. Letting her know that she is safe and that she still loves her, that everything will be ok. “No mama no!” she screams, and her mother softly touches where her shoulder appears to be. Her mama whispers, “I love you my lil Roo, no matter what you do, I love you!”
There are days when I want to sit beneath the blanket just as I did as a teen. I want to hide from the world, so nothing can hurt me and so I can do no further destruction. The unexplained changes in moods, feeling the strong, intense, fiery sensations bolt up my legs from the tips of my toes and ravaging my body. One does not easily forget what this feels like. Nor does one forget what it feels like to have so much energy that you sit and literally vibrate while sitting in place.
Mania takes forms in various ways. Grandious energy and activity and anger and violence. With the aid of medication, and the increase in knowledge, I am far better able to handle it when it crosses my path these days.
I have worked on ways to channel the energy, like cleaning. It gives me something to do, something productive, something that’s not defined as crazy, impulsive or destructive. But although a Saturday spent cleaning disguises the inability to sit still, to quiet one’s mind and body, it doesn’t change the fact of what it is. I can laugh it off and state that now my house is clean, and how I took advantage of an amazing opportunity, but this causes daggers to stab my heart. The presence of mania in my world offers frustration and anger, much like when I was a teen. The inability to be still, to be calm, to think and be able to process and iterate full sentences that actually make sense. For a person who has been babbling her whole life, it is quite the statement to make that I am unable to speak because the words are so jumbled that what is trying to be said cannot be decoded from the thoughts that are coursing through your mind.
Oh mania, how I love to hate you. You make me feel alive and wounded at the same time. You try and steal my sleep but I will fight you. The attempts to derail my progress force me to bring all I have to the table to fight you. I will not allow there to be more destruction as result of this disorder. Oh, I will prevail, sooner or later, I will prevail.