This is the fourth in a series of episodes, detailing my dawning realization, that I have some mental issues, that I must address, or risk losing those around me, who mean so much to me. I do not know how many installments this will entail, because I do not have an outline, for this particular avenue, that my Life has chosen to pursue. Because I have always found writing to be therapeutic, I am going to share my journey with anyone, who cares to read along. Believe me, I am not having that much fun.
What About Annie?
So how am I doing, thank you for asking? And what is it I am attempting to accomplish, by putting all of this out there in writing? And what about Annie?
I am doing far better than I have any right to expect. I have taken the chance of a lifetime, in terms of dumb actions, and managed to come out in survival mode. What doesn’t kill you, is bound to make you stronger, right? Now, I feel as though I could bench press a million mental trials and tribulations, and come away feeling I had a fighting chance. I am up for a good fight.
As far as why I am writing all of this down, that’s easy. When I first started to preach about panic attack syndrome, I felt that it might be easier for people who have these issues, to see that anyone can have these issues. Being “me” did not remove that thorn from my life. Now I am facing the idea that my mental issues are considerably more severe, than what I originally believed. I do not think that changes anything.
Speaking for myself, I do not get tingling sensations of delight, when the term bipolar is [hurled] at me. I get images of erratic behavior, of surges between the possible behavioral poles, and of disjointed logic. I think of angry individuals, launching invective at others, the way kids fling snowballs around in a melee. I do not see me, in any of this, and maybe there are others who have a hard time seeing this in me.
Get over it. Regardless of what physical form it assumes, it’s still me, stuck beneath the wheels of this drive-by device. I am willing to admit that I have a malfunction, but I am completely unwilling to admit, that I will not come out on top. Furthermore, I will be damned if I will retire to the inside of my home, and pretend that it is Boo Radley we are talking about, and if we just let a little time go by, everyone will forget about it. And what about Annie? She’s doing better, because all she ever wanted in the first place was to wake me up.
One key issue is the fact that a person with mental issues, cannot properly ascertain his own role in the mess. All I could ever do, is lean back and watch the marionette that was me, controlled by the strings inside my confused head, as I went about the business of steam-rolling my way over people who mean a great deal to me. Like any artist, regardless of quality of the art, I obsessed about my work. I experimented with literary devices; I came up with more and more outrageous ideas, about which to write; and I embraced the role of community spokesperson, when it came to the murder of Jamal.
I have never claimed to be a profound writer. After all, I never go back through my stuff and change a word. I just won’t do it. However, I’ve never published anything either, because I do not feel up the hoop-jumping that must be done, in order to be able to start this process. What I have noticed, however, is that some pieces of mine, seem to strike a certain cord with people, and this brings them back. I am the proverbial big fish in a small pond, which works pretty well for me. I get lost in big ponds way too easily.
All of this is well and good in moderation. However, by the time I passed moderation, I was screaming along at 90 mph, with no way to apply the brakes, or the breaks. I struggled with the fact that there must have been something that could have been done. I have never been one to turn back the hands of the clock, and whine. Now, however, I wanted to provide for our community, some sense of process or order, which would allow some of the fury we felt, at this injustice, to dissipate.
I focused on the college fund for Kaiden, a concept that I felt would give the community a central focus, and allow some of the angst to be channelled into a positive outlet. This was all well and good. I took on the role of committing to keeping the community informed as to the court appearances of Jamal’s assailant. When the local paper omitted my articles for two weeks running, I staged a public protest, a step that, again, those around me felt was extreme. Predictably, my reaction was to be unhappy, because no one inquired of me, how this protest had gone.
I was conducting a public protest; I should have been worried about the private protest going on inside my own world at home.