Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘wellness’

Poems

Even though the house is deeply silent

and the room, with no moon,

is perfectly dark,

even though the body is a sack of exhaustion

inert on the bed,

someone inside me will not

get off his tricycle,

will not stop tracing the same tight circle

on the same green threadbare carpet.

It makes no difference whether I lie

staring at the ceiling

or pace the living-room floor,

he keeps on making his furious rounds,

little pedaler in his frenzy,

my own worst enemy, my oldest friend.

An excerpt from: “Insomnia” By Billy Collins

 

After many sleepless nights, I am finally rested and ready to tiptoe back into the blogosphere.

“Been away so long I hardly knew the place…Gee it’s good to be back home….”

One of the reasons I haven’t been posting is inertia. Once you stop anything it can be difficult to start up again. Conversely, once you start something it can be hard to stop….

Plus, I grew weary of talking about, thinking about, writing about, reading about…Drugs, Moods, Cycles…….

I felt stuck. The best part of writing for me was connecting with people, of knowing that, just by the virtue of sharing my experience, others felt validated, and in turn, validated me.

So, I’m still drug free. Still have my ups and downs, my good days and my bad. I will confess to having moments when I want to reach for the phone and call Dr. X to request (demand, plead…) a prescription for something, anything that might eliminate the ups and downs. But then I watch television for a few minutes and I am reminded, by the inundation of pharmaceutical company commercials, that more often than not, the side effects are worse than the disease.

One thing that just occurred to me, literally as I was writing this (another reason to keep at it) is that, subconsciously, knowing that I had sworn off drugs forever, I began to accept how I am. What I mean by that is, knowing that there would never be some “quick-fix,” or any fix for that matter, I got better at managing my moods myself. You see, I think if you hold out hope for some “cure,” you never become adept at living with, or managing whatever it is that you have. If you fall off a boat in the middle of a body of water and no one else is around to save you; you’d better learn to swim. You may not like it, you may swallow a lot of water, but if you survive, you know that you did it yourself. And you realize that no matter what happens, no matter how difficult things are, you can get through it. And you’ll be stronger and more resilient because of it.

So, what does this all mean? For one thing, it speaks to the dichotomy of life, the yin & the yang, the Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde of it all. The bipolarness of life in general, for everyone. I hope that you will join me on this new, expanded journey, this new format of looking at LIFE as bipolar, not just the disease. That you will offer up your questions, suggestions, your experiences, (your rants if that’s what’s going on for you at the moment), and occasionally a shoulder to cry on. And I promise to do the same for you.

Be well, Marco

 

Read Full Post »

Against DepressionEven when depressives perceive accurately, they lack the motivation to heed their own judgment and alter their behavior.” “Against Depression” by Peter D. Kramer 

Behavior is hard to change.  Even for the sanest among us, losing weight, quitting smoking, committing to a diet and exercise plan, any alteration from our status quo takes courage and commitment.  For those of us who suffer from some form of mental illness, the barriers to change can be profound.  I have come to the conclusion, after decades of talk therapy and drug cocktails, that prescription medication is not for me, that it is never going to cure me.  And in most cases, the mere fact of having to rely on medication makes me feel “ill,” keeps the fact that I am handicapped at the forefront of my mind. 

I am embarking on a new path, at least for me, that does not include psychotherapists, anti-depressants, anti-psychotics or anti-seizure medications.  I am anti the antis.  I grew up in a family where illness was currency.  It was used to instill guilt and to manipulate others.  In that way, I learned that, while there is no denying the “real” effects of a disease, there can be a psychosomatic aspect to illness.  It begins, after a period of time, to define us.  We begin to get used to it in our lives, to accept it, and eventually accommodate it.  We do not have the disease, we ARE the disease.  And that makes any kind of change or recovery that much more difficult. 

The only way out, as I see it, is to have a paradigm shift as to how I think about disease.  In that light, starting a blog about mental illness seems like an unlikely way to disassociate one’s self from the disorder.  Time will tell. 

My hope is that, through this new venture, in writing about it, in sharing my thoughts with others, and in engaging in a dialogue with others, that I will learn to think in new ways.  That, in coming together as a community of like-minded individuals trying to discover new ways of coping with an old illness, a sense of purpose will replace what was once a sense of despair and hopelessness. 

I will do my best to keep my personal life out of this, to not bore you with my mood on any particular day or my frustration with any particular aspect of my life that is not relevant to the task at hand.  I am not here to vent.  I am here to share and to discover.  And I hope in turn that you will share with me your thoughts and your experiences as we travel on a new path to wellness.

Read Full Post »