In light of the e-mails that came asking if things were okay on this end, I'm feeling led to address why I've been absent for the better part of the past two weeks.
There's really no other way to put it: I got hit with a bipolar depressive episode. The worst that I have had to go through in a very long time. And it absolutely robbed me of my desire to write or to post anything at all. Apart from a few Twitters or Tweets or whatever they're called, my activity online was a fair reflection of my activity in real life: pretty much nil.
I've written about bipolar depression before, but this latest bout
refreshed in my mind how horrible this condition is and how I would
never, ever wish it upon any person. One moment, you're feeling high on life. And the next, totally without warning, your interest in everything flatlines.
I could not be interested in this blog. I could not be interested in the news. I could not be interested in Star Wars. I could not be interested in the music of "Weird Al" Yankovic... and as Homer Simpson once observed, "He who is tired of Weird Al is tired of life."
I was not living, but only existing. Bipolar depression is like a torturously-long drawn-out death: you want to live, but you don't know how to live. You don't know how to want to know how to live.
There were entire days during the past two weeks when I wanted to die and get it over with. To welcome Heaven or oblivion, because either would be better than the hell I was going through. Once upon a time I might have considered taking steps toward ending my life and putting a stop to the pain.
In fact, one person I know, did just that in recent days. A very good, sweet and devout Christian person. I don't know if she had bipolar but she was suffering from an agony that nobody can possibly understand without experiencing it personally.
Sometimes I wonder if someday, that might be me too. If the pain will become too much to bear and my cries to God seem so unheard and neglected that I feel no other alternative than to "opt out". Because I didn't consider doing that these past weeks, but there certainly were times when I asked Him to just let there be an end to it all.
I know it's not "me". I know it's the bipolar. I know it doesn't last forever. It didn't this time and it won't next time either. And my prayer is that everyone who goes through any kind of mental illness might realize that and hold onto it during their times in the valley.
Were it not for the honor of being in a best friend's wedding last weekend, my girlfriend's presence and encouragements, and a few other things, I wouldn't have been able to get out of this house at all. Okay, Tammy the Pup still needed walking a few times a day, so there was that.
Thankfully the episode is retreating. My interest in life is returning. Kristen tells me often that I won't have this problem so severely after we're married (parse that as one will, heh-heh...) and Lord willing that will be sooner than later. My desire to write is coming back and I'm going to try to make up for some stuff in the next few days (not the least of which will be a review of Man of Steel: a film which I am increasingly of the mind is the best superhero movie made to date).
Okay, back to work I go...