Monday, 4 March 2013

The jerk who liked hugs

Abstract: I am basically a jerk that likes to be hugged

Dedication: To the man that made me realise that it is OK to be a jerk and demand hugs from friends on all occasions, because that is who I am. DT.

I wanted to call this post "How to love a person with Bipolar".

I didn't.

Because; we as humans are far too diverse to be categorised as such.
To draw any parallel between myself and the next person that is bipolar would be arrogant.
I am different to you, you are different to the person sitting next to you, and they are different to the person they stood next to in the Café this morning.

It still leaves the question, how do you love a person with bipolar?  I don’t have an answer, what I discovered while writing this was; we all deserve to be loved, despite our flaws and indiscretions.

So this post is about how to love ME and my bipolar in just 5 easy steps.

1) I am a massive jerk and I wish I owned a magic eraser.

I don’t know if this is a bipolar thing or just a Lola specific trait but my compulsivity is at its most indulgent when it comes to my mouth and my emotions.  This brings me undone with the people I love every day.

I figure that most people are born with an in built sensor within their brain, a mechanism that makes red lights flash and says “DON’T SAY THAT” when something ridiculous is about to come out of their mouth. Well I was not born with this mechanism or mine is faulty, either way EVERYTHING I think or feel comes out my mouth, I mean everything.

This is good and bad, on the positive side everyone that I love knows that I love them, I have no fear in sharing how incredibly overwhelmed I am that I have wonderful, beautiful and inspiring people in my life. If you know me, you know this, I will end most conversations with “I love you”. I actually mean it, I love a lot of people, just in different ways and for different reasons.

The bad is, I suck hard at social situations, reading social cues and responding appropriately. I just met you and this is crazy but let me tell you all about this wild thing that happened to me once, even though you are a stranger. It is also problem if I am feeling short tempered, hazy, lost, unsettled, angry, confused. You will know that too. I will be silent, I will yell, I will ignore, I will “snap” for no apparent reason, I may just tell you to go and “shove your decaf skinny latte up your arse”,  (this is clearly why I am not in customer service). I don’t know why this happens, it’s happened to me for as long as I can remember, I know it’s happening and yet I have no control of the words that seem to spit from my mouth.

Its days like these I wish for the magic eraser, where I could rub out what I said and replace it with more kind words. I will admit that this affliction has given me a great capacity to apologise, and seek forgiveness, I just wish it was not so hurtful to the people I love.
If I ask you, can I use my magic eraser, it means I am sorry, that I was taken over by whatever chemicals in my brain turn me into that wired lady who won’t shut her mouth. The best part is the magic eraser is reciprocal; you get to use it too.

2) I am responsible for my illness.

It’s important for me to feel in control, especially of my illness. When I feel in control of it, I feel well. This is not your responsibility, what you do and say should have no deeper impact on me than on a normal person, I never want you to sensor yourself because of my illness, I want you to be you. 

This is my illness, I am responsible for
·         Managing it
·         Medicating it
·         Taking it to therapy
·         Reigning in the highs
·         Picking up the lows.

I don’t want to be saved, I am the hero of this story. I just want you to love me, with all my flaws.

3) I get by with a little help from my friends.

These are people that to date have seen more of my ups and downs than anyone, they know my triggers, my pre-mania indicators, my uh-oh this is depression again signs. They stalk my facebook, my instagram, my youtube links and my pinterest pins, they can read more deeply into a link to Like a Friend by Pulp than the other 322 friends, they know when I buy handbags and shoes that shit is getting real. They bless my life with their love, understanding and compassion, they forgive me when I least deserve it and will always answer the phone at 3am.

In essence, you can’t have me, if I don’t have them.

4) Out of Space.
Sometimes I just need space.  Sometimes it’s physical space, sometimes it’s mental space.                 
My head is often a swirling lake of inner dialogue, I need to escape, get out, shut down. This doesn't always mean I want you to go away, sometimes it just means I want you to shut up. So shut up.

5) Hug Me.
No; really, hug me. Wrap me up in your arms, hold me firmly and just breathe it out with me.  Hugging is proven to reduce respiration, heart rate and release endorphins,  hugging is physiologically good for you, so let’s hug.
Most times a hug can fix anything, the times that it can’t, it makes whatever is broken easier to cope with.
You can hug me when I am sad, angry, annoyed, irritable, raging, happy, joyous, you should just always hugs. If in doubt HUG!

See, I really am just a jerk that likes to be hugged.

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