"From this hour I ordain myself loos'd of limits and imaginary lines, going where I list, my own master total and absolute, Listening to others, considering well what they say, Pausing, searching, receiving, contemplating, Gently, but with undeniable will, divesting myself of the holds that would hold me."
Walt Whitman (1819-92)
"When I look back now over my life and call to mind what I might have had simply for taking and did not take, my heart is like to break."
Akhenaton (d. c.1354 BC)
And now, the current weather, from some random person we pulled off the street:
Friday, April 09, 2004
Happy Birthday, Baby
year Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English yere, from Old English gEar; akin to Old High German jAr year, Greek hOros year, hOra season, hour
1 a : the period of about 365 1/4 solar days required for one revolution of the earth around the sun b : the time required for the apparent sun to return to an arbitrary fixed or moving reference point in the sky c : the time in which a planet completes a revolution about the sun
2 a : a cycle in the Gregorian calendar of 365 or 366 days divided into 12 months beginning with January and ending with December b : a period of time equal to one year of the Gregorian calendar but beginning at a different time
3 : How long this blog has been here.
On Monday, April 7th, 2003 I opened this blog with the statement "Sometimes you have to tear yourself in half to find yourself at all."
In the intervening year, this blog has recorded more than one ripping apart. At the time I had just been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, a mental illness I had apparently had for at least 30 to 35 years. All that time, not knowing I was sick, I had been fighting it until it almost killed me.
And it was a squeaker too. Take a look at the archives.
So now, here we are, a year later. And I feel like I should give some words of sage advice, or at the least a bit of a status report.
Well, lets see. Did I get ripped in half? You betcha.
Did I find myself?
Well, that's a harder question. I could approach it from lots of angles with lots of spins but all in all I have to say the answer has to be...
Have I mastered living with this illness? Not on your life. I take my meds faithfully, and they help tremendously, but I still have triggers that can send me into a downward spiral on a moments notice.
One thing that I have now that I didn't before is a good support network.
Now I have to work on my reluctance to actually use it.
All in all, when I sit back and assess things, I have not really progressed far at all in the past year. In some ways I have even slipped backwards. In other words, I'm still a mess. I want to be strong, and I fight as hard as I can, but I just don't have it in me. I just don't.
Then again, it is midnight at the end of a particularly bad day. This may make these thoughts suspect.
[Sigh] Happy Birthday, Blog. Let's blow out the candles and have some cake.
"Know thyself," said the old philosopher, "improve thyself," saith the new. Our great object in time is not to waste our passions and gifts on the things external that we must leave behind, but that we cultivate within us all that we can carry into the eternal progress beyond.
Edward Bulwer-Lytton (1803 - 1873)