I am not talking about the depression , the anxiety or even the mania. Maybe I am talking about the hypomania? I think it is possible to achieve a state that stays below that edgy and jerky feeling of hypomania. It's sometimes productive, but sleep suffers and you are not fully in control.
You may think me delusional but I have honestly not gone that far in any of my manic experiences. I am in a state of happiness, not elation of hypomania, a really nice relaxed place. It is true I have been a bit edgy, my sleep is a bit off, my appetite is higher. I find myself smiling a lot, even at 2-8am in the night. That is the secret life I am talking about. Those night time hours when no one can hear you scream.
All I can say is, "thank goodness for the internet, email, chat rooms and all that". I don't know how I would have coped in the past, even 15 years ago. I am thankful for my IPOD and a good set of headphones. I can keep myself entertained without upsetting the neighbours. This is a good secret life and it it can be nurtured with a little attention to coping skills. I just try to keep my mood from drifting into hypomania. I no longer see mania has a real threat. I have found lots of insight through the school of hard knocks.
I am in a good place. It is unfortunate that it happens mostly in the hours of darkness. I am not sure even my good online friends understand where I am. they might ask "Are you sure your okay?" At least there is little chance of a visit from the men in white coats, the MH police. I hardly exist in the eyes of the MH system. I see my psychiatrist on infrequent occasions and that is worthwhile. I have called the crisis team on rare occasions, most recently on Jan 4th, 2011. My mood picked up on the 5th. No rhyme or reason. I suspect it was the fact that the crisis team offered nothing of note. I just woke up next day as a different person.
I wouldn't go as far as saying I was normal. I am not sure I ever was "normal", whatever that is. if normal is what I was most of my life, I don't ever want it again. I want to to retain my current "happy" state. My sleep pattern is a bit odd right now, but I am sleeping, maybe 4-6 hours. I started getting tired early in the evening and turned in early quite often. This led to early waking (2-3am) and long waking nights. I have blogged about this in the past and I find it the biggest challenge.
In depression or anxiety, you can usually just plod along in a zombie-like state. In full-blown mania you can be away with the fairies. While this is not good, you can be impervious to any problems. My current state, or even hypomania, is a big challenge. I still think pretty clearly and need to keep busy, entertained, fed etc etc. I find that blasting music loudly in the IPOD helps. In depressed or anxious moods, I cannot even play the radio, and sometimes not the TV. I have recently found that I can handle audio books when reading wouldn't be an option.
I hope I am not rambling on. I will stop now in case I do.
Life is good. I found a really supportive chat room that I go to a lot. I have found someone who might be able to produce an audio copy of my first book. I have sent pdf's of the book to several friends and I await their feedback. I have found my focus for the follow up book and I have a working title. I am blogging again and engaging with people.
Thanks for reading this. I hope it is thought provoking? Please comment or send feedback by email, thru facebook or W.H.Y?