And then there was ONE

Today it’s too hard to navigate my marriage, my job, my cat, my house, my bills, and bipolar disorder. Thoughts flash: run! End it! Just cry it out! I start to plan all those things-pack a bag, grab all my medication & head to the bridge, snot all over myself. All this planning started from under the covers well past the time I was supposed to be at work. As I begged for continuous sleep far into the day, I found myself on the couch too soon. I have so many bottles of medication I haven’t taken. Kept promising myself I would turn them into my therapist or my psychiatrist, but secretly wanting the option for days like this.
My marriage is vulnerable right now. I’ve become too much. I no longer enhance this relationship. The words my husband is using today are sharp. Truth behind his pain. Pushed up against the wall he spouts them. Not to hurt me necessarily, but release himself. The burden that I am is heavy. He is strong. Maybe too strong for 18 years. He often tells me that I have no idea how all these episodes of depression, mania, suicide attempts, battles w the bottle affect him. Truly tear at him. Not only because it hurts to see a loved one in pain, but the insurmountable amount of powerlessness that follows for him. Sometimes feeling betrayed as I reach for the liquid courage instead of him. Sometimes confused why I fall into the dark abyss with no warning. Sometimes because emotions are simply too damn hard.
Its funny because on the inside I am proud of myself when I can be “normal” what I think of as a good wife. I wonder if he notices I’m doing well. I just keep on showing him, at least in my mind, how I’m trying to rise. But, its that day my smile isn’t as big. My silence is stronger. My demeanor changed that he notices. Yesterday he asked if I was feel down. At first I denied it and said I was just tired. After all we had a great start to the weekend. He asked me again a little while later and I decided to shake my head yes. His response reminds me how hard the roller coaster is from any seat. He said we will cancel plans for tomorrow because he doesn’t want to get me “started.” Tears. Instant tears. Started? Does this mean he truly doesn’t get me?
As the sun sparkled I went back to bed under the guise of a headache. Physical pain is easier to accept and has a cure in ibuprofen. I laid me down to sleep to escape. Escape disappointment. Escape depression. Escape having to perform.
The evening didn’t end so well. More truth hit the fan and sent daggers around the room. I yelled. He tried to ask me not to yell and I yelled more. Poor poor communication and coping skills. This is not the picture of a good wife. I excused myself back to bed at 7:45 pm hurt feelings in tow.
I think the trigger to all this is loneliness. I have no support system.i have no friends. More truth to pierce my soul. And where am I now? Alone on my couch in the middle of a Tuesday when I should be at work. It fills the room and I cannot breathe. But dammit I will not cancel those plans. Red eyed. Tired. Full of self hatred. I will smile and carry on.
I feel like I am a party of one dancing around the bigger party. I don’t know how to get in. Do I deserve to be in? Can I, we, lay the burden down?

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Can Bipolar move the earth?

If the earth moved even a billionth of a centimeter I would feel it. I am that sensitive and tuned in right now. More accurately I’m in overdrive. Bustling and bumbling through my day like I’m the man about town with some serious shit to tackle.  Deadlines are obliterated. Paperwork stacked and restocked. Calendar bursting w meetings and agendas I know nothing about.  However, the start of my day is a wrestling match as I fight myself to get out of bed. I cry into the mirror as I curse my face, my hair, my being. Then I gather my things and skip to my car. Off to work I go.  On the drive, tears stream. The overwhelm of existence and the expectation I participate in life hit me like a rolling thunder.  The mind races as if to catch a tornado ravaging through towns. At the stop light I am forced to take a pause. Take a moment. Take stock.  A few days this week I have contemplated running right through that red light and straight to the bridge that taunts me. The bridge that promises me free fall into the abyss. No more wrestling. No more crying. No more desperate need to show I am normal and do not harbor a mental illness.  The light turns green. I turn left towards my office.  I park wiping confused and tired tears from my eyes.  This inner battle can’t be seen. My freshly pressed blouse and slacks wreak of secrets and botched professionalism. Yesterday I couldn’t utter the word bipolar to my officemate. Instead I used the term chronic illness. I have never used that terminology before in reference to myself. There are huge gaps in my memory due to me beating out “sick” for months at a time coupled with the usual memory issues of bipolar disorder.  The gaps filled the room as she and I were cleaning out cabinets for our impending move. She is new and  looking to me for guidance on various documents. My anxiety and frustration rose at the same time.  My ego being poked. I finally looked at her and briefly explained my gaps.  Soon after, I slammed my computer shut, grabbed my stuff and scurried away. Gave no notice to anyone I was leaving.  Once again in my car at that red light.  The bridge less than 15 minutes away.  I turned in that direction.  But, you know what there are probably 7-8 red lights down that path.  One of those intersections leads me to my mental health clinic.  I checked in the for he afternoon and freshened up on some DBT skills as well as attended a process group.  There are so many ways I can go w my bipolar and lots of times I’m just spinning.  Today. Somehow, I got myself where I really needed to be.