Living with Invisible Illness: Mental Dice- NHPaxton

-It’s not every day that you can look into the mirror and see two people, but one all at once. The darkness raging inside to take control, begging to be released. “Have a shitty day,” it screams. “Your life is meaningless, everyone hates you, you can’t do anything right, you’re pathetic. You live just to serve, you’re empty.” The agony builds like a raging river. The pain of depression sweeps across the body like a wildfire, leaving the burned out husk of your sanity to hang on to the edges of a fraying world. Today is a down day. Time passes slowly as you watch the world carry on, your body incapable of doing anything but try. With effort, finally, you manage to break through, only to be asked if you’re okay. “Yes, I’m fine, thanks,” you hear yourself offer. In reality, you just want to curl up and cry. The day never ends, everything makes you think of a mistake from 10 years ago, long gone, and remembered only by you. Bodies pass, time flows, the world carries on, and finally, you succumb to sleep at the end of a bloody long day.
-A different person greets you in the morning, smiling brightly, full of energy, and never ceasing to have something pleasant to say. “Hi, good morning, let’s take advantage of this beautiful day,” you say, not thinking. Yesterday, the world was darkness. Today, the roller coaster has shifted, and you’re manic. Full of energy with no appropriate outlet. The world buzzes around you, you’re more attuned to sounds, everything is vibrant and light. But your mind is too busy with so many other things to even really notice. “Let’s do this, ooh, oh, go over there, yes faster now, finish everything so we can do more things, go go go!” The chores you would normally scoff at are done in a flash, the things you hate don’t bother you, the world and pain are dull flashes behind a shell of pure energy. Before long, the day ends. The work you’ve done, though considerable, isn’t sufficient to make you happy. You strive to finish more, working deep into the night, getting things done that have been on your plate for days. Exhausted, you finally haul yourself to bed, sliding into blissful sleep, the night taking hold with its gentle arms.
-You awaken, groggy, tired, your eyes are swollen bags of regret. Today is another roll of the dice. Will today be a downer, or an upper? Will we be manic, or depressed, or some God awful combination of the two, without explanation? The darkest depths one morning, the highest highs in the next. So go ahead: roll that die. Who do you get to be today?

I’m a pharmacist, a father of two wonderful little boys, and a husband to an incredible and understanding wife. I struggle with rapid-switching bipolar disorder, and my every day Life is a complicated dice roll of what part I get to play today. I have been writing for most of my life, finding my feet in dark poetry in high school in DeviantArt. I find solace in the ability to put my emotions and experiences down on paper. I’m currently in the process of writing a debut novel, which I’m struggling to finish, just out of sheer fear of failure, another fault I fight with on a regular basis. I write broken poetry, dark fantasy, and high fantasy. You can read more of my writing at NHPaxton

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