There has been a lull in my mood lately. The quiet destruction of mania is easily mistaken for depression; it’s making me take my time with life, something I hardly ever do. I am being slowed down by a salt. I would be remiss if I did not mention the catalyst of this mood stabilization. The lithium makes me feel slow, quiet and slow. The thoughts I have no longer move at breakneck speed and no longer jump easily from topic to topic.

The mania I normally experience is simply an unbridled, unrestrained, delusional exuberant. The reaching thoughts and “good feeling” are its more benign attributes. The malignant features seem to be more subtle and creeping. The difficulty of delusion and the micro-hallucinations make the “good feeling” better. It would appear to oneself that nothing is wrong, that everything is okay and the one is king of the world.  The grandiosity makes it so.

However, to external people the insanity and chronic impulsivity makes the manic person appear but of their mind. The grandiosity makes them appear cocky, and the delusions and hallucinations create an air of schizoid tendencies. This combination usually creates a subtle insanity that to the manic person all appears normal. When in reality, the cruel insidious insanity creates chaos and calamity. Decisions cannot be “taken back” and the abyss that is mania takes over momentarily enough to wreak havoc.

The depression on the other hand is a more “in your face” foe. It approaches you in a way that says “I am here and never leaving” – similar in a way, to the mania. The appearance of permanence makes both depression and mania formidable opponents to serenity.

Therefore, the mania is the more cunning, baffling and powerful opponent. Its subtlety and quiet annihilation of sanity create an air of incredulous disbelief in anyone but oneself.

The light abyss and the dark dungeon are both neither good nor bad. The polarity or emotion and the culmination of light and dark, good and evil, optimism and pessimism, manifest difficulty. The gift of feeling essentially all human emotion every day, for one that cycles rapidly, is why, in my opinion, bipolar people are close to God and able to be so personable.

If the point of life is to be a part of, not apart from, to be a cog on the great clock of life, then those afflicted with Bipolar Disorder have a greater chance, when stabilized, to do so. The mania disconnects in a delusional way, while the depression allows for pessimism in the cloak of realism. The difficulty of begin a part of, when manic or depressed, becomes paramount.

In conclusion, to understand is not denying pleasure is pleasurable. To love rather than be loved, to be a part of, rather than be apart from, is divine. And in this divinity, those afflicted by Bipolar Disorder cannot connect. This disconnection from reality, in any extreme emotion, means that anyone afflicted should hopefully come to a conclusion that mania is far more destructive than depression. And hopefully, medication, if necessary, ensues. Especially for me.

– Nick R.