i wish i were normal

We’ve all heard about it. In this post-politically correct world, scores of the mentally ill have written about how shitty things feel for them. Many responded with sympathy, some responded with hostility, others chose apathy. It’s okay, it’s not something everyone gets. This is going to be another one of those “boo hoo I’m fucked in the head and life sucks” posts, much like a teenager going through their period of angst would write in their notebook filled with emo poetry. (Is emo still a thing with teens now?)

I wish I were normal. I wish I could be as calm and collected as successful people, those who learned how to compartmentalize their emotions, to feel nothing, to stay calm in the face of great duress. I wish I could wake up some day on a weekday, and not think about wanting to skip work, not dreading the commute to work a job I sometimes have trouble performing. I wish I didn’t have to make excuses to take a sick day because I felt really anxious and depressed that day. I wish I was never forced to say that I have a migraine or a bad stomach just to make it seem like I’m actually sick. I really wish I wasn’t me.

I wish I knew what it felt to have a completely silent mind. I wish I had better concentration, so I don’t make mistakes at work as much. I wish my mind allowed me to pay attention to detail more. I wish I could commit to things, like making a habit out of writing everything down, but I just can’t for some reason. I wish I would stop making excuses for myself, to start running again or even just doing yoga at home. I really wish I wasn’t me.

I wish I was never born into a family that had a predisposition for bipolar disorder. I’ll be passing this disease on if ever I have a child, which makes me second guess if I ever want to start a family of my own. I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. I wish I knew what it felt to have a clear head, free of the constant buzzing of thoughts, the anxiety you just can’t ever run away from, from the suicidal thoughts that make you rethink your whole sense of being. I really wish I wasn’t me.

People tell me to appreciate myself more: find the good in you and celebrate it. Tell yourself that you’re worth more than the shitty thoughts you have about yourself. Try as I might, however, my mood is on a hair trigger; should anything shitty happen, I will most definitely be triggered, and everything I’ve been working towards – my positivity, the idea of being nicer to myself for the good I’ve done – all of it gets kicked out of the window because my brain won’t let me think about anything other than what makes me feel sad. I really wish I wasn’t me.

I often look at people who seem to have things under control. I envy them. I envy their privilege. Sometimes, I envy the fact that they seem very happy. Comfortable in their skin, doing what they love for a living, changing things, even speaking in forums – things I want to do but never really figured out. The funny thing about bipolar is that yes, you have so many good ideas, but you haven’t the foggiest on how to make them come true. You have all these delusions of grandeur (an actual symptom, believe it or not) that you’ll someday make it, tower over everything and everyone who’s ever caused you stress, and you’ll be living a comfortable, quiet life. But every single time I get triggered like this, all that goes to waste. All of that hope, extinguished like a candle in a storm of negativity. Hope snuffed. Hope trashed. Hope, gone. I really wish I wasn’t me.

Embarrassingly, I post my sad rants and my thoughts on offing myself on social media, hoping for someone to reach out and tell me “hey, don’t do it, you’ll be fine.” I turn into an attention-seeking mess, asking apathetic people on social media to pay attention to me and my problems. I know I shouldn’t, but the more emotional I get the more irrational my thoughts. I keep those posts there to remind me to not do it again – but of course, I keep doing it anyway. I really wish I wasn’t me.

I envy the people who never have to take a mood-altering pill just to feel some semblance of being “okay.” I envy the people who don’t have to break down every time they feel stressed. I envy those who can manage to balance their expenses every month. I envy the people who can confidently take a stand and defend their beliefs. I envy the people who know how to make things happen their way. I envy the people who don’t have to deal with rapidly cycling moods, or feeling shitty all day because of a thing that happened that morning. I really wish I wasn’t me.

There’s hope, I guess. Someone told me that right now, I’m feeling shitty and trapped because I have no say in how things happen. But someday, when I’ve paid my dues, I’ll be able to have more control over my career, life, and emotions, and I’ll finally be able to say that I’m happier. But that dream grows further and further away with each episode I have, which happens pretty often, to be honest. I really wish I wasn’t me.

Being bipolar sucks. But despite the shit I slog through on a daily basis, I won’t give in and take the easy way out; living is too nice, so many things to see, hear, taste, feel, love. It’s just so hard to justify living like this – working your ass off and getting depressed, sleeping late because insomnia, feeling thankless – and then spending two days trying to run away from it all, only to go back Monday and feel everything again.

I wish I were happy. That’s really all I want.

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