So I’ve been sitting here for a few hours writing my next book about having to go to a mental hospital a few years ago and all my experiences there and that led up to it. It has been a tumultuous night with all the emotions that go along with self reflection but I feel so happy to be where I’m at.
I’ve known that I’m bipolar for about four years now. They haven’t been the easiest years but God has definitely been watching out for me. One of my biggest blessings is the people I have in my life. That goes for family, friends, and coworkers. It seems like every person in my life serves a purpose in my fight to survive the ups and downs of being bipolar.
The main thing I remember from the time that led up to my ‘incarceration’ was how awful I was to loved ones and strangers alike. I spent my daily life trying to live up to what I was pretending to be on Facebook and Instagram. I could never be a celebrity because having 500 Facebook friends went straight to my head.
I didn’t realize it but living that lie made me completely miserable. I also didn’t realize that the stresses of being a teacher, for the year and a half that I did that, was the exact same thing.
Teachers, on the whole, are not allowed to be human. This is not an attack on my previous employer but a nation wide problem. They have insurmountable odds that they have to fight everyday and administration nay-saying their every move. They can’t have personal lives or flaws.
I spent the year and a half that I was a teacher trying to live in a way where no one would think I was bipolar. To be fair, this ‘rule’ was self imposed but I definitely didn’t feel the freedom to be a three dimensional person in the public school system.
Teaching ended for me, and in retrospect, that was the best thing that could have happened in the given situation. I returned to working as a nurse and I’m once again allowed to care for people without having to worry about their grade point average in second grade.
It was so unhealthy for me to try and live like a “normal” person. Being bipolar has its drawbacks but it definitely has upsides as well. I was unknowingly trying to ignore both and live in the mundane middle and that’s not living.
Now, I’m allowed to be myself. All of it. All of my coworkers, friends, and supervisors know that I’m bipolar and it is completely fine. I take my pills and supplements daily and go about my day. I have never felt like a more complete and happy person.
To get here, though, I had to stop acting like I was perfect. I’m beautifully broken and I’ve come to love that about myself. The first thing I did when I got home from the Looney Bin was get online and blow up the facade that I had been living under on Facebook.
Seriously, the most toxic part of my life back then was who I was trying to be on social media. If I could give any advice from this it would be to make sure you’re aware of who you are being online and if it is affecting your real life. And also, respect the H-E-Double L out of teachers.
As always, thanks to everyone in my life that gives me the space to find out who I am daily. I no longer feel like I have to tape myself up into something to be suitable for society. I am blessed by each person in my life and want to do my best to return that blessing to each one of them.