Recently there was an episode on Charlie Rose honoring Robin Williams called “Robin Williams Appreciation.” I have never seen Charlie Rose interact with Robin Williams, until now. It was as if Rose became a comic with Williams, and they would banter back and forth as if their geniuses were able to engage in rare form. One particular exchange of dialogue struck a chord in me:
“There are a few people that can do what you do.” (Rose)
“You mean that are actually out of institutions?” (Williams)
People have called Williams a lot of things: a genius, crazy, absurd. However, this particular quote reveals insight into Williams feelings about people that are in institutions. What is considered “crazy” in our society often times gets blurred.
You know you have problems and you might be depressed when you are watching Sex and The City reruns (2008) and Beverly Hills 90201 reruns (2009). The numbers are not when anything aired but when I was lost in depression and watched it.
Depression rears its ugly head in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes our depression isn’t obvious. You don’t have to be stuck in bed for days to be considered depressed. Unfortunately we don’t always know we are in a quasi depression until it’s over, and we look back and recall the signs that we might have missed. Hind sight is always 20/20 but if you pay attention to slight changes in your behavior you might be able to better manage your mental health.
I was quasi depressed about a year ago. The quasi depression was written all over my body. I found myself wearing the same clothes everyday: torn jeans with a rotation of the same shirt just in different colors. I stopped keeping up with personal maintenance like waxing my eyebrows or plucking unwanted hairs.
Before I was diagnosed with hypomania I lived a life of extremism. I found myself running around like a Tasmanian devil, however, once I was diagnosed and properly medicated I really didn’t have excuses to do anything so excessively anymore. But, sometimes behavior doesn’t change despite medication to help curb symptoms. Does it come done to intensity that accompanies mania, or am I just exercising a behavior that is simply a part of my personality; a behavior that no pill can manage or reduce.
You are something or you have something. What is the difference and what does that mean to you and the world we live in? How do people respond to language that communicates a mental illness and what is the difference between you are X or you have X? For example, I am diagnosed with Bipolar II. Some people say “Oh you have manic depression” or “Oh you are manic depressive.” Recently, I pondered this slight twist of diction in a sentence because there is a difference. When someone says you ARE something it tends to define you. You tend to think of yourself as the disease when really it is simply one aspect amongst a long list of attributes that constitute our being.
Whether it is big or small, most of us experience anxiety. It can be a long dark anxious cloud or a short moment of piercing anxiousness but, whatever form it takes, it’s terrible.
Here are 20 things that cause me anxiety:
What causes you anxiety?
Anxious man image available from Shutterstock.
When we turn on the TV often times the commercials that depict depression show a person in the dark, resting in emotional turmoil, sadness, walking in a forest alone and secluded. I find some of it comical yet sad that society gets fed these images that inaccurately depict depression. Stereotypes unfold visually on the screen, and it is not always indicative of the feelings and/or experience of depression.
Most people educated in Bipolar disorder are familiar with the term Bipolar I, however, sometimes when I say I have Bipolar II I get a follow up question, “What’s that?”
If someone were to Google Bipolar II a flurry of website would pop up with medical information that can seem like you are reading an encyclopedia. I try to explain it visually. Imagine a line that signifies a person going along in life without a mental illness.
Sometime when we go through bouts of depression we are prone to become isolative and ostracize ourselves from our friends and family. When this happens it can result in more stress which can feed your depression. Here are some tips to help curb the anxiety one can experience when attempting to manage depression when it comes to your loved ones.
Communicate: When you drop off the planet your loved ones will become concerned about the status of your mental health. It is important to be honest with your feelings. If you don’t feel like being social that’s okay. Just communicate those feelings.
When you’re bipolar
you feel it
across the breath of a conversation
you think it
all around your world