Now you see me, now you don’t!

It’s a game right? Kinda like peek-a-boo … One minute you’re there, one minute your not.

Magicians call it a vanishing act. Magicians also try to cut their lusty assistants in half. Magicians are not nearly as cool as Wizards. Just saying …

Last year … I was “here” … I was making huge decisions and feeling all powerful and She-Ra Princess of Power-like.

I was proud of myself.

I was visible.

Everyone saw me roar.

And the funny part was, life sucked, BUT I had control. I controlled who saw me. I controlled who loved me. I controlled who talked to me, looked at me, deserved me …. I could see me.

Right now, I’m nowhere. I’m camouflaged with by the facade of a busy girl with lots of shit going for her and a wonderful family and yada yada yada. Life in all technicality is good, right?

Wrong.

I’m invisible.

Last year I was in the midst of a divorce, I had no money, no job and no idea what my future held. Everyone was worried about me and wanted to protect me and help me. But the thing was, I was fine. I felt guilty about the help. I was grateful, but I was also overwhelmed. Regardless, people saw me. My pain was visible. It was obvious.

This year I’m back together with my husband and things are going splendidly. My kids are behaving at school. This website has hit it’s all time high in traffic. I freaking sold/gave away almost 50K books this year! I’m in college and on my way to a great future. Sure I’ve got a bit too much on my shoulders, so obviously I’m stressed, but that’s to be expected and it’s my fault anyway. Thus, I’m typical, I’m a regular bipolar chick suffering from the holiday blues and a bit of stress due to excessive responsibilities. How does that make me any different from any other Bipolar person? It doesn’t. Thus, my pain is invisible.

My friends have bigger problems; marital troubles, recent divorces, difficulty holding down jobs and paying bills, and some are even physically disabled and ill. My family has bigger problems; sick children, unemployment, no money, almost no home, amongst many other things. They have actual things to be upset and/or depressed about. Their pain is visible.

Here’s the scary fact, it is actually possible that I am more miserable than at least half of them.  I know that doesn’t seem possible, and I know it sounds selfish, but it is what it is. I’m hurting, I’m in pain, I’m nervous, I’m worried, I’m a failure, I’m a lazy ass who wants to not be lazy, I’m a mess, I’m bored and disinterested.

All very selfish feelings. Surely not sympathy worthy. Mostly self inflicted. A self induced state of misery and annoyance and there is nothing I can do to stop it.

Broad spectrum lights … they’re great. However, the minute I walk away from them the high disappears.

Vitamin D – worked at first, then life got more difficult.

Exercise … ran twice last week. 2 miles non stop once and 2.5 miles with one stop the next run. My body felt nothing. I wasn’t soar. I had no runners high. I was merely filled with disappointment that I wasn’t able to run 3 miles.

So what does that make me?

An attention whore?

Ungrateful?

Blinded to my Blessings?

Dare we say it? … A bitch?

So it’s probably a good thing I’m invisible, right? It’s a good thing no one sees me. My vanishing act is actually an asset to those around me.

Doesn’t stop me from feeling this way though. Cognitively I KNOW things are fine. I KNOW life could be worse. I KNOW people I love have it worse. I KNOW sympathy belongs elsewhere, to people who deserve it. I KNOW IT.

Doesn’t change how I feel.

Doesn’t make me any less lonely.

What is it that I really want? I want everyone else who’s hurting to stop. Then I can too. Then we can all stop being lonely and start being happy.

If you’re not confused by all this … you’re obviously Bipolar or something of the sort. Because only someone as irrationally ridiculous like me could understand a word of what I just said!

7 thoughts on “Now you see me, now you don’t!

  1. My first thought was “it’s about time she told me what the hell was up!” My second thought was “I love you.” The holidays are here, we *are* struggling, but “this too shall pass.” The trees will get trimmed, taken down, and life will roll along in 2012, just like it did in 2011, 2010, 2009…you get my point. I’m not bipolar. (or am I?) But I do see the irrational ridiculousness that you speak of. All I can say is that you are NEVER alone, even if it feels like you are. It’s just a scientific fact…and you can’t deny science. We wait for you to surface, we’ve got open arms, we even have ears. Our shoulders are broad, our hearts are big, and the fact that you haven’t lost us after 30 years should tell you something. Even when you hide, even when you purposefully shut down, you still are NEVER alone. Believe me you when I say that your Busia would CROWN YOU…you farmer…if she knew you were carrying on. So, baby steps…pick your ass up, stand up straighter, head to the Pdoc, and get that cocktail tweaked or just scream it out. You’re loved, you’re amazing, and you have been missed. This has been a message from your friendly, and extremely pushy (and to some… narcissistic), sister. xoxox

  2. There is so much of what you wrote that I could have written. I know friends and family who are much worse than I am. I do feel selfish, but it doesn’t change the way I feel. I heard a preacher last night, on TV make a statement about depressed people using depression as an excuse for the way we feel and act.It really made me upset. I thought,’you have never suffered depression’,or you would never make such a comment.

  3. Susie,

    You are OBVIOUSLY on the wrong station! Don’t watch that guy anymore. What he said was cruel. If you’ve ever had depression, you know it’s not something you are using as an excuse. No one would WANT to be depressed. Why on earth would they?

    And Marybeth, what your sister said is true. Even if I am only here online, I am still here for you to talk to, vent to, whatever. Just because your pain isn’t the pain of unemployment or losing a house or going through a divorce or something equally awful doesn’t make it any less painful. The hardest person on you is YOU. Give yourself permission to feel your feelings. You have a right to them and you’ve earned them.

    Hugs,
    Chelle

  4. Marybeth, no sympathy from me! I understand 100% what you are saying and I am robbing your words. I won’t tell you how much I admire you, how precious your sense of humor is to me, what a joy it is to read what you share. “I feel” – no one can dispute your right to express how you feel or how much I love you.

  5. We cannot control life,it controls us. The more I try to control things,the less I am feeling in my own skin. The only thing in life that is promised is that we breathe we just breathe,and there are others that breathe too,be it along side of us or not. I can relate your emotions of feeling annoyance and misery. Thank you for sharing how you feel,it takes courage sometimes to be that “magician.”

  6. Marybeth,
    Thanks so much for not being a Hallmark movie – for being gutsy enough to show your real side. Too many times it seems like my student/teachers think that they can make everything alright for all of their students – and I have to let them know that for every win there is often one (or more) losses. We can never be everything for everybody – and sometimes the best we can do is go to bed tired and begin again in the morning. Somehow I’ve been quote on a brand of wallpaper saying, “You are never a loser until you quit trying.” It made for good rah-rah talk when I was coaching but I once had a student tearfuly come to me and say “I don’t want to be a loser.” And one of the toughest lessone we need to learn is to take time for ourselves – it’s ok to take time to breathe (as I have been learning in yoga).
    I’m really hoping that I haven’t added too much to your work load. I’ve really appreciated your efforts in helping me and my students know and appreciate what may be going on with persons who are bi-polar. I have students right now that are going into exams and pulling their hair out over the workload, and studying, and writing. And in the meantime I am also supposed to be working on a dissertation – should have a 15 page proposal ready on Saturday. Probably won’t make it – decided to speak to a bunch of middle school teachers and prepared a cd with all sorts of teaching acitivities for them. I’m not bi-polar (at least I don’t think so) may have a little ADHD but mainly care about people and am driven by a need to help make things better for them. Thank you for helping me help others.
    Pete

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