I've been in an endless battle with manic depression, anxiety, PTSD, and more for pretty much my entire life. This terrible hand I've been dealt has been such a constant presence that I worry about who I even am without my mental illnesses. For now, I'll just dive into the bipolar. I am always on a build-up or a build-down of sorts. The energy and adrenaline slowly grow within me until I freak out, act crazy, and spend sleepless nights doing 8000 stupid things. Then, the sad, numb, nihilistic, depression slowly increases until I have a meltdown, sob over nothing, and scare my friends and family. Then I'm right back to the mania. Sometimes the highs are fine. I'm just a little too happy or a little too excited, but sometimes it's quite destructive. I've blown up friendships; hurt people; hurt myself. Similarly, the lows vary. Sometimes I'm just a little down, numb, and tired, but sometimes it's really bad. I've missed important deadlines, let my grades suffer, and cut myself off from my friends for weeks. I even attempted suicide. I can't control it, there is absolutely nothing I can do to make it better, and it's ruining my life. I am trapped on the worst carousel imaginable and the horrible part is that part of me wants to stay. Don't get me wrong, I want it to stop. If I could flip a switch or take a pill and make it stop, I would. But there is still something comfortable about the lows, and fulfilling about the highs. Feeling nothing; wanting nothing; not caring about the consequences of ignoring my responsibilities. No one understands and no one cares. You can work so hard to achieve some made-up goal like going to your dream university, but for what? So you can become a miserable adult working a meaningless 9 to 5 for a soul-sucking cooperation? So you can be exactly like every other stupid kid with big dreams who despite their best efforts, ends up exactly like everyone else? I hate that person, but I am that person. I've always been that person. I know it so well. It's safe. It's home. I get that warm nothingness and then escape through the manic episodes. I get things done, even if I usually don't finish them. Being productive; feeling euphoric, like being high; not caring about whoever might get hurt (including myself) in my path of insane exhilaration. The world is completely open to me. Everything and everyone is filled with such profound beauty. There are a million things to love and a million reasons to do whatever I want because the purpose of your one life is to fill it with as much action and experience as you possibly can. Maybe nothing matters in the long run, but if you can shovel as much good as possible into this world then isn't that worth it? I love that person. It's the person I've always wanted to be. If I could be that person forever, I would. I'm overwhelmed and scared of myself and I don't think I can fix it. If you've made it this far, thank you. Despite everything, I have hope. I hope you do too.
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