Epiphanies (essay about bipolar disorder)
An essay about my experiences with bipolar disorder and my thoughts on the disorder. Written in 2015, edited in 2020 with an update on how I'm doing now. Nine pages total.
"When my mother was pregnant with me, her first born child, she went to the clinic for genetic counselling. This was to determine whether or not I was likely to inherit any of the myriad of genetic disorders that run in my family. The verdict was that I probably wouldnt. In the waiting room, my grandmother was crying because she didnt want to think about the possibility of her grandchild inheriting her mental illness - bipolar disorder."
"Guilt was not enough to curb my poor impulse control. It wasnt peer pressure or typical teenage rebellion that dictated my actions; it felt like a stronger force that I wasnt sure how to resist at the time."
"Even though I rarely have symptoms now that I'm getting treated properly, I never forget that I'm bipolar. I have to take a pill twice a day. I need to make sure I dont get too stressed out, because stress can trigger bipolar episodes. If I start feeling really good for no reason in particular, or if I feel more energetic and impulsive, I wonder if its the beginning of a manic episode. I have spent so much time trying to separate myself from my disorder, wondering if parts of me only exist when I'm not properly medicated, but I've realized it doesnt really matter. My moods, behaviors, and experiences are all a part of who I am, whether they would exist if my brain chemistry was different or not."