“I’m afraid I’m bipolar after all. I actually have Bipolar II Disorder. “
These are the words I mumbled to myself after my second (and correct) diagnosis. For the first time I felt that I could dig below the surface of my unhappiness without being ashamed of what I might find. This diagnosis was timely because it grappled so starkly with the reality of mental illness.
When I was misdiagnosed with unipolar depression, I used to wish I were bipolar, on the theory that I could at least accomplish something. (Boy, was I wrong about that.) Plans made during hypomania never come to fruition. They are started, rethought, abandoned, exchanged for something grander and ultimately fizzle out when the hypomania wears off.
I have Bipolar type 2 so I don’t experience the manic highs, only depressive lows and hypomania. This is the reason why I was misdiagnosed with clinical depression.
Well hypomania for me is kind of reckless. It is spending masses of money I don’t have. It is an almost irrational intense anger towards everyone and everything. It is believing that I rule the world and anything is possible. It is boost in energy. It is loud rapid speech. It is insomnia. It is a boost of ego and self-belief. Hypomania relatively brings exhilaration, ambition, confidence and invincibility, with no brakes. It is almost hell on wheels.
Then this all very suddenly turns into depression and I’m left feeling physically and emotionally exhausted. I start to fixate and obsess on all the outlandish things I did when I was hypomanic and hate myself for it. I begin to lose my cool. And the depression is more often than not, so severe I begin to hold suicidal tendencies.
No doubt, depression is the devil. Depression is to sadness as a broken leg is to a splinter. Depressions sucks the life out of a person and mutes all emotions save for misery and lethargy. Depression throttles. Depression denies all possibility of complacency or elation or sheer happiness. Depression is hell.