Little, yellow, different

No.  Not Nuprin, but my anti-anxiety drug, a stronger one than I used to take.

It’s been a long several days, and I shan’t/won’t go into details, other than to say the following.

Crazy people are liars.

They lie to themselves about how much they can handle, until they just can’t anymore.  In the meantime, they pretend that they’re fine and go through their day, smiling and cooking and working and doing all the things that make it seem like they function.

At least until they don’t.

Sometimes, they recognize in enough time that they can’t, and they take their anti-anxiety pills (or whatever it is that tames that roaring beast inside their head that threatens to kill that last sense of Self.)  Sometimes, when all their multiplicitous stressors pile on and smother and threaten to drown their psyches at once, they even recognize through all the sobbing and feelings of complete, utter failure, total abandonment and rejection, feelings of worthlessness and uselessness and the burden they (think that they) are and they’re contemplating all those lovely pills in the bathroom, the ones that if you just take enough, well, all those worries will just go away– sometimes they take just one or two more of those anti-anxiety pills, just enough so they can sleep and wake up in the morning, the drugs like an oil-slick over the panic and worry that threatens to drown them.

It lets them bring out into day truths they’ve been too scared to say– for whatever reason.  Because frankly, once you’ve already admitted that you might need the hospital because you’re afraid you might take all the pills in the cabinet, everything else seems, well, pretty small in comparison.  (For the record, I’m fine, or at least working on it.)

So.  If you want to understand what your beloved crazy/depressed/bipolar person is lying about, I highly recommend that you read not a medical book about the disease that they’re suffering some or some general magazine article, but a first-hand account from someone who’s been there.

Kay Redfield Jamison’s An Unquiet Mind is an account by a renowned psychologist of living with Bipolar I.  I’ve never been manic/psychotic like she, but her account of her dismay of being smart and worrying about the loss of her mind, and her accounts of her depression, her sense of loss, sense of self– they are priceless and perfect.

William Styron’s Darkness Visible is a short, concise, utterly accurate account of both depression and the black despair that surrounds someone who’s thinking about killing themselves.

There are others, like The Noonday Demon and Lonely which also tell aching, true stories.

None of these will fully explain your loved one’s crazy behavior, but they will at least give you some insight into the black depths they can feel, even if you’ve never felt it yourself, never imagined feeling that way.  It’s inexplicable, sometimes, why the moods will come on, and other times, it’s completely within reason to understand why someone freaks out– and yet the freaking out is beyond their control.  The only thing that is in their control is those nice little pills.

Yellow and small, an oil slick of calm, cool and collected until the crisis is past, something to let the crazy one think past all the things that are causing the stress and think, if not this too shall pass, then at least, what next.

What next, indeed?  Something different, one hopes.


4 thoughts on “Little, yellow, different

  1. Janet

    “feel­ings of com­plete, utter fail­ure, total aban­don­ment and rejec­tion, feel­ings of worth­less­ness and use­less­ness and the bur­den they (think that they) are”…I felt like that last night…


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