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Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Flip Side

Note: I wrote this draft last week and then haven't felt well enough to come back to it, but upon rereading it today, decided to leave it as is (with the reference to being at Mr. Gorgeous' house in the present tense) because it says what I want it to say and will save me the energy of having to rewrite it.

I haven't been feeling well lately, so I was going to follow up my earlier post with the acknowledgement that my self-knowledge and acceptance comes at a cost, which is suffering. I am keenly aware of the duality of things, that suffering is the other side of joy, that love is not wholly complete without loss, that you don't fully understand happiness until you have experienced sorrow, or know peace unless you have faced terror and chaos and pain. I know how rock-bottom feels and up until today, that was going to be the subject of my post, that it must be recognized how tragic it is that I survived the worst of my bipolar disorder and then years of awful medication withdrawal only to be brought down by migraines. It is truly terrible and unfair that I must find happiness in little things because otherwise there might be no happiness at all.

Happiness is as simple as this.
But then the sun came out today. I needed that sun very badly. I'm house-sitting for Mr. Gorgeous, which I enjoy, but it's exhausting, especially when the weather is abysmal and saps whatever strength I have. It's also just plain miserable to walk a dog when it's 42 and raining. My moods are most definitely impacted by the seasons: my hypomanic phases always came in the spring or summer. So the sun came out and suddenly I was glad. And not only was I glad, but I found myself feeling deeply grateful that my life has been and still remains, in many ways, hard enough that the mere appearance of sunshine can send my mood soaring. The hillside above Mr. Gorgeous' house looked so beautiful in the sunlight that I stepped outside with my camera to take a picture of it and that's when I discovered that it was snowing! Yesterday evening's walk was undertaken in sun-lit rain, a chilly experience whose novelty, despite the rainbow, quickly vanished, but sunshine and snow was a magical delight. Now I am happy. And furthermore, I feel lucky. It's a tricky thing, this kind of luck, but today, if you were to give me the option of being able to erase my migraines and the years of struggling to bring my rampant depression under control, I'd turn that offer down, and take, instead, the wisdom and the joy that those agonies have granted me.

1 comment:

  1. Puts into words just how I feel about my life and the way it is with Stephanie and how empty it would have been without her.