Friday, October 16, 2009

Struggling with Brain Disease

I suffer from Bipolar Disorder. Symptoms include mania, severe depression and certain aspects of schizophrenia.

My BPD is chemical based, which means the depression isn’t triggered or sustained by my situation. It's a brain disease, a malfunction that can be caused by many things and which the Psychiatrists don't really understand.

The most terrifying aspect (for me) of a severe bout of depression (for example) is the disassociation or loss of self that one can experience. Your emotions and thoughts don’t seem to belong to you and, at times, you can become convinced you have no control over your behaviour. Try to imagine being possessed, shoved back into a small corner at the back of your mind, aware of all that’s happening but unable to do anything about the fact you’re yelling like a maniac at your wife or your child, or you’re planning in detail the immediate end of it all.

Now, one of the ways to counter such an episode without resorting to more drugs and/or a hospital stay is so simple it’s laughable. What is it? You must take ownership of what you’re thinking and feeling. That’s right, you aren’t possessed and you aren’t without control. You always have the choice to simply stop, to recognize that these are, indeed, your own thoughts and feelings, even if you don’t know how to deal with them at the moment. This pause, all on its own, has the power to get you through almost any crisis and can give you the time you need to find a solution to the situation at hand. My own particular approach is one I discovered during a hospital stay… one always has the choice to accept what he or she is thinking, then turn away from it. That’s really all you have to do in any given moment: make the choice to turn away from despair and death and look toward light and life. It’s such a small thing you might consider it insignificant. But the choice isn’t insignificant, and it works.

Note: The process is not easy, however, as you must be forever vigilant until (if this happens) the aberrant thoughts go away. Think of the movie A Beautiful Mind.

Anyway, my battle over the last while has slowed down my reading ability and has forced me to come up with alternate content for my various blogs. To quit producing was to continue looking toward the darkness; to find other forms of content I could manage to produce was making the choice to look toward the light. The following is an example of this. It’s a horror poem, written by myself about my disease.

Mind Fuck

Chemicals in my brain
Are toxic today,
Hurling spikes
Of preformed anger
Into unwary flesh.

Go away dear people.
Do not venture close:
I draw blood;
A storm of slicing,
Razor-edged words of bale.

Sadness underneath is
Tearing me apart
As I rend
In my helpless rage,
Destruction unfettered.

I call music to me,
And the Gods, so that
The devil mind fuck,
Is ripped from its warm hole.

Bruised from this psychic rape,
I lay on cool sheets:
Silence heals.
Don’t ever tell me
Evil is just a myth.

Copyright © Clayton Clifford Bye 2009

For more of Clayton Bye's writing, visit his website or become a fan.

No comments:

Post a Comment