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My life changed forever at the age of 26, when I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. A whirlwind of mania with overpowering energy shook me to the core, depression crippled my ability to function, and psychosis convinced me I was not of this world. All eventually led me to the depths of a suicide attempt and a three-day stay in the ICU. I have been hospitalized in the psych ward twice—for a month at a time—and I have nearly slipped into homelessness and self-medication more than once. My history is full of pain and sorrow, but it has blossomed into a beautiful picture of hope, perseverance and empowerment.

Though I once viewed it as a curse, bipolar disorder soon brought me the most amazing gift I have ever received. Choices are key, even at your darkest. As I spent time with young children, I experienced healing I had never anticipated, and as I journeyed on to teach university students, I felt welcomed and connected to a new place I called home.

I wrote daily in the heat of my small one-room apartment, and I soon realized I wanted to share my story so others did not have to suffer in silence like I did. I also learned that South Korea was an escape, a means to avoid the tragedies that had taken place, so after two years I decided to move back home to Victoria, BC. I know what it means to stare hard decisions in the face and live with the consequences of them.

I know what it means to live with regret and wonder about the path not taken. I had to find my own way through life.


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  • It took longer than I wish, but even before my diagnosis, I found that my path sometimes needs to diverge from the conventional wisdom. I need creative outlets, although not necessarily artistic ones. I am known in my family for not caring what other people think about me. Those acts of rebellion?

    The Bipolar Guide to the Gift

    Yeah, they rarely turn out well for me. An unconsciously-developed coping skill , I am more comfortable in my differentness than most people I know. Now, through therapy and hard work, I appreciate that my seemingly-bizarre choices are ways I honor who I am, and that makes it even easier to step outside of cultural norms. I have unusual bursts of creativity and energy that I can harness for good.

    Add Years to Your Life, and Life to Your Years

    Even as a teen, I would get bursts of energy that would keep me up all night as I was driven to clean my room or use my excess energy. Fortunately, I defaulted toward using this energy positively most of the time. Ideas flowed easily, and new projects were started. Prior to my diagnosis, I was unable to harness this state. Abandoned projects and brilliant ideas litter my past. I am more comfortable in my differentness than most people I know. What I know now is that these moments happen during my hypomanic cycles, which makes them somewhat predictable.

    The Link Between Bipolar and Creativity | pewahomaci.tk

    First, I keep a list of evaluated projects that I have determined are good priorities for me, and these get my attention and focus. The productivity I have in these cycles is incredible. In this case, the authors have found a very rare signal that may shed light on the cause of this problem for a small group of people carrying these diagnoses. Paddock noted. We can and should go back to these samples and analyze them with the unprecedented accuracy that today's technology has to offer.

    Hypomania finally! Is Bipolar a Mental "illness" or a gift?

    Materials provided by Elsevier. Note: Content may be edited for style and length. Science News. Story Source: Materials provided by Elsevier. Biological Psychiatry , ; 71 10 : DOI: ScienceDaily, 10 May Gifts of the MAGI in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.