I Have Bipolar Disorder (And That’s Okay)

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She is wearing a bright blue sweater underneath her white coat.
Her hair looks like it has tiny flecks of purple.

Royal,
she seems.
I like her.
She is soft, but assertive.
Her touch is warm as we shake hands,
and I am not afraid of what she will tell me.
She asks me questions.
Her cerulean oceans staring into my emeralds,
I am not uncomfortable with my answers.
And neither is she.

The words I have long suspected materialize in this space.

Bipolar Disorder:
a manic-depressive illness characterized by unusual shifts in mood,
Energy,
Activity levels.
The nights I am wide awake,
fueled by projects and ideas and burning potential.

I am burning.
I cannot sit still.
I am supernova,
always on the brim of an explosion.
There is ash on my fingertips.
I do not smoke.

The days I only get out of bed
because it is what society dictates,
and I am afraid of what silence will do.
I practice the blocking for my family,
I am one woman show.
A character, regurgitating her lines.
But alone, I dance with The Reaper.
I hide in a black cloak,
and run my skeletal fingers up and down his spine.

She says my brain is wired differently.
She spews words:
Genetics.
Prefrontal Cortex.
Episodes.
High-risk.
Suicide.
Talking Very Fast.
Fatigue.
Restlessness.
Problems with Decision Making.
Impulsive Behavior.
Overly Long Periods of Hopelessness.

Now, I do not like her as much.
I understand she is doing her job.
She is helping.
She is trying to help,
but she is not helping.
She is reading me like a manual.
Cookie-cutter,
I am not a singular definition.
Maybe my brain is different,
because I am supposed to be different.
I am supernova.
Burning.
Unlimited potential.
Something people study,
and research,
and marvel at.

This disease,
is part of me.

But it is not me.

It is not me. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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Ari Eastman

✨ real(ly not) chill. poet. writer. mental health activist. mama shark. ✨

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