New Years Resolutions extrapolated from experience of psychosis and mental illness
Today’s date is January 5th, 2016 and I have a diagnosable mental illness. The diagnosis I have been labelled with is Bipolar Disorder 1 with psychotic features. I was given this diagnosis on May 17th, 2011 and I have been living with is, as it, and according to the rules of the system that cares for these sorts of troubles since then. May 17th is like a second birthday for me. Or more accurately, a day that I died. I failed at my confused attempt at suicide, physically, only to die inside. It was the day I was locked in the psych ward, labelled, and felt hopeless to find my way out, yet at the same time safe. Safe from myself. And yes, I’ve since then been looking for a way out. There must be a way out of this. Five years later and I’m still looking for a way out. I’ve heard that “the only way out is through.” I’m definitely going through it. I’m immersed in it. I’m saturated in drugs, medication, medicine, as if something is wrong with me in particular. And there are many types of medicines, of things that can help heal, but none are so worshiped as psychiatry. I am not against medication. They have been my helpful friends, both symbiotic and parasitic at the same time, like any conventional friendship. By why are drugs the convention and not the intention of healing? Why are the given in hopes of concealing all of the inner turmoil that happened to boil over in a moment of trauma or extreme distress? The stress, tension, and hurt has been growing inside the psyche for years, like a cancer that crosses the threshold into the arena of detection. It can now been seen, detected, but it didn’t happen overnight. In the same way, psychosis, to me, is not an acute situation, though it appears that way. It’s been brewing and percolating in the psyche for years. It only appears as acute when manifested as aberrant behavior to onlookers. I didn’t know to observe myself for psychosis. There is no “self breast exam” for psychosis, at least in the beginning. Over the years, I feel I have developed more insight into this condition. I got most of my education in “insight” as it might be called last year, in 2015. In 2015, I made 2 trips to the psych ward. I had 2 psychoses. They weren’t such ordeals as my first break psychosis in 2011. That one was a 2 month process to different dimensions, inner and outer, of my own self, and the one self that is humanity. It’s difficult to get semantically correct on all the inner, outer, big Self, little self verbiage. I’ve learned to much that I don’t know where to start. I don’t know where to start as there is still a split between my head and my heart, and here I try to speak with my heart by using the constructs of words and thoughts. But the word is not the thing. The map is not the territory. Psychosis is like map making land. It’s like trying to figure out what things really mean in a world that has little meaning. So many words cover over the true meaning which is more of a felt sense than a reality that can be described in words. Reality can’t be described in words as soon as one is uttered, the word is not it. This seems completely rational to me, at least at this moment, but yet reality is made up of words, and I continue to live in them. My resolutions revolve around the theme of being embodied. I have been pondering this theme for some time, as is evident in my journal and note taking, that seems to be more repetitious as I don’t put it in practice, forget I conceptualized it, and proceed to have a pseudo-eureka moment based on my amnesia. So many seemingly beautiful insights, once recorded on paper, becomes a dead thing. Yet, when I’m dead, would I miss these notebooks? Or would I miss my embodiment, having a body, being a body? The body dissolves yet the insights remain in the ether, infinitely available to all that are quiet enough to hear them, feel them, or see them. Insights are infinite, are ever moving, like a kaleidoscope, no particular configuration can be grasped. And why do we want to grasp? Why do we want to record, repeat, when out there, there is infinite plentitude. Nothing can be grasped, and by grasping, we live in an illusion of our own self reflexive ideations. My resolutions are to not live this way. My resolutions are to practice doing headstands. I want to spend time amongst the trees as their complete naturalness and sanity with Universal process may reach my by osmosis and their wild electromagnetic fields. I will sing out loud more. I want to love more. I want to observe myself closely and watch for the messages that tell me I’m going the wrong way. I can’t know what the right way is exactly, as I walk this life along side a Universe that has it’s own ideas. Perhaps it has less ideas and is more of a mirror. I feel as if lately I’ve smashed the mirror. I feel that this might be a blessing in disguise as it will allow me to challenge some deeply held beliefs that I would otherwise not have seen. I was listening to a psychoactive audio program and tears started streaming down my cheeks. I’m not sure if I’m happy, or if I’m releasing emotion in small manageable packets. I am ready to stop managing and start thriving. Can I thrive with psychosis? I’m not sure, but I’m readying myself to find out.