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Bi-polar Exploding Hedgehog! Wednesday October 26, 2016

In the words of the Carpenters' song,

I'm on the top of the world, looking down on creation..."

But this isn't a happy place, it's scary.

It's like being possessed by a pack of rabid wolves. The wolves want to break free and run wild, but I can't let them. These wolves have sharp teeth, dripping with poisoned foam; they will bite and tear and rend. I can't let them out.

Oh, I used to. I used to ride those wolves. All I felt then was the wind in my hair; all I smelt then was the sharp scent of forest pine; all I heard was the crisp crunch of snow underfoot and the glorious music of my howling wolves as they sang love songs to the moon.

For these are Russian wolves, with all the muscled power and passion of Mussorgsky. They rage and rampage through the great gates of Kiev, and fly with the witches through the night on Bald Mountain.

Yes, these wolves leave a trail of destruction and I cannot let them out.

So, where does the hedgehog come in, then?

Well, the wolves are scary. And people will think I'm weird if I talk about the ravening wolves inside me. Nobody's scared of hedgehogs, so it's easier if I tell you about the hedgehog.

I feel like a very spiky hedgehog.

Let me introduce you to the spikes; from a safe distance.

Rage. Lots of that. No, there's no reason. As my daughter said this morning. "Mummy, just don't be cross: there's nothing to be cross about." She's right. There is no reason for this rage; it is entirely chemical in its origin. I managed to hold it in today; I didn't strangle her. I think I deserve points for that.

Irritation. No – don't try to do anything right; you can't. Everything you do will get on my nerves. And – it isn't you: it's me. Honestly, it is and I can't do anything about it.

Hostility. I don't like you much. I don't like anyone much just now.

Intolerance. There's black and there's white. There are no shades of grey. None. There's my way and there's the highway. What do you mean, compromise? Forget it!

Jealousy. A seething, coiling, venomous serpent hissing and ready to strike out at any moment. I want your time and I want your attention now. Nothing and no one is going to be more important than me. Get used to it – because if you want to be my friend, that's the way it's got to be.

Sleep Deprivation. Ah yes; I am so tired, yet wired tight as a dozen expresso shots. The chemicals in my brain won't allow me to sleep for more than five hours.

Which means this hedgehog is volatile, stuffed with nitroglycerine. Handle with extreme care.

There is no "light blue touch-paper and retire," because half the world away is not far enough.

I'd just better hibernate. Alone.

Safer that way.

For everyone.

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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Lou Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 7:16am

Wow. What an evocative & vivid blog. As a person subject to bouts of "regular" depression (not bipolar) some of your descriptions were still very familiar. Beware the sleeping hedgehog. What a fantastic image. Good luck wrangling those wolves.


Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:10am

Thank you Lou. Brandishing a chair and a whip at the moment as the wolves are developing stripes and lashing tails! They are morphing into tigers!"

Duma Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 7:31am

Hi Mary.

You're in need of some Mary Time. Too much - you'll get weird. (Iron sharpens Iron...)

Find a nice bit of Steel. Don't get blunt.

Don't forget your wolves, when you're 'well'.

They need your TLC, too.

Good luck, my brave.

Duma, poking a stick into bear traps, just in case.

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:11am

Darling Duma! Thank you

S Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 8:16am

Wow, what an amazing description! Sorry you are in this place right now,wishing you some moments of calm hibernation. Thanks Mary for sharing- like Lou some familiar descriptions. Sx

Angela Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 8:44am

Going to change my name - Hetty hedgehog. When I feel really rough and SO irritabl I wonder whether it was possible to feel any worse. Love and hugs to you all xx

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:11am

I recently went to a fancy dress event as Mrs Tiggywinkle. Prophetic much?

LP Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 8:49am

Oh Mary, what an amazingly passionate piece of writing! I SO identified with the torrent of rage that is inside if I let myself tap into it!
Congrats for letting it out, no frills. Was it a relief? Satisfying, or painful?
Maybe it was a while ago, how are you now? Hibernation and a bit time away sounds good. Big hugs to you and all LP xx

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:12am

Getting worse not better but thank you. I get so much support from you guys. Love you all

Another Sally Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 8:56am

Good morning Mary,
What an extraordinary description. You have such a way of illustrating the vagaries of bi-polar. It throws new light for me. Like Lou, I feel mine is regular depression, but still there is no reason and I would just lie to hibernate myself. Family problems have left me home alone for a few days and stressing about a situation I have no control over. I am glad to have the 'Moodscope' family to help put my bro elms into perspective.
The sun has just started shining here, hope it shines for all of you.

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:12am

Bless you. and Thank you

Krysanne Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 9:20am

Great description & feel a bit of relief reading it as it means I'm not the only one stuck in Bi-polar exploding headgehog mode! Trying not to spear anyone as I partially hibernate alone.
Thanks Mary for putting into words what I'm trying to deal with currently but still trying to appear calm and sane when I'm with other people.

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:13am

That "appearing calm for others" - oh yes!!!

Audrey Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 9:43am

Dear Dear Mary, I am sending you a whisper of love and will plant a daffodil bulb in my garden this weekend especially for you and call it Golden Mary.I will care for it and watch it as it grows and turns and twists and peeks throw through the darkness into the sunlight. I will cherish it as I will cherish your words. You are a survivor. Where I live we have beautiful blonde hedgehogs who are a wonder to see. I will always think of you when I see one in my garden and when the Golden Mary is shining once more.

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:14am

Oh Audrey, thank you so much. Actually, I am blonde and I normally have my hair in a semi spiky cut - so that is totaly appropriate. I love daffodils and if I were a flower I think I would want to be one - or maybe a jonquil as they smell so sweet.

Deborah Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:36am

Where would we be without bipolar minds when it comes to creating great literature

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:04pm

I will take that as a huge compliment, thank you!

Deborah Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:36am

Where would we be without bipolar minds when it comes to creating great literature

Hopeful One Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:44am

Hi Mary- oh my word! What a vivid description of a bipolar high. There seem to be no natural 'circuit breakers' one can suggest to lower the circuit amperage. I wondered if meditation would be of any use as it does work in other situations where there is raging emotion or racing thoughts.

Here is today's laugh

The reason why Men are not allowed to give advice in Love-Columns of Magazines :

"Hi! I'm a lady aged 26 married & have one kid.
Last week my husband was off duty and I had to drive alone to work.
I left my husband with the maid and my baby at home. I drove for just about 2km from home n my car engine started to overheat so I turned back to get the other car.
When i got home i found my husband romancing with our maid...!!!
I don't know what to do now. Please help."

Reply by Male Columnist :

Dear Neha,
Overheating of engine after such short distance can be caused by problems associated with the carburetor.
You need to check your oil and water level in your engine before you start your journey. You must also make sure your car is serviced regularly to avoid problems in future.
Hope this helps.....!!!!????????```

Duma Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 12:36pm


Tutti Frutti Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 12:45pm

Love the joke

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:06pm


Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:09pm

And... actually I find cardmaking and zentangling helps. I may blog on that next week

Tutti Frutti Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 12:54pm

Great description. Don't know if you are in the right place to answer this now as I certainly wouldn't be, but as someone who is bipolar but more prone to the down side I haven't really learned how to control the up yet if it does arrive in earnest. I would love to know the practicalities of how you keep your wolves under control and make your hedgehog hibernate. Meanwhile I am thinking of you and praying for you and blowing kisses from a safe distance away from the spikes in case all of this is irritating.
Love TF x

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:15pm

I am struggling too. Last week I blogged on how I am prone to throwing out things and people I love. When I wrote this blog I sent it it to three very dear friends basically saying "so long: see you when this all over" Sadly, one of those friends has decided I meant it.... As I wrote above to HO, cardmaking...

Tutti Frutti Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 6:07pm

Mary Thanks for replying and I hope your friend will come round. I think it is really positive that you can still recognize how destructive the sort of behaviour you are pulled towards would be and that you have arranged an appointment with your team to help you. I hope that they will be able to improve stuff for you. Just keep holding on until then. I will bear in mind card making as a tactic. Don't know if this will do it for you but if you want an alternative to card making I sometimes go f calm classical music (Classic FM is often good). Love TF x

Salt Water Mum Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 12:57pm

Dear Mary, I identified with every word you wrote. I wish I didn't! But I did.
Hugs from another very spiky hedgehog

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:16pm

Collective noun for a group of hedgehogs? A "spike"? A "prickle"?

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:16pm

Collective noun for a group of hedgehogs? A "spike"? A "prickle"?

Lexi Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 1:52pm

Mary, your blog this morning struck a very deep chord with me. I too used to rage. Oh man, I could destroy anything under two minutes: relationships, my room, anything. I was once diagnosed as bipolar but I thought that meant I should have a high as well as a low. I didn't have a high. I had two speeds: raging and depressed. And so I never understood. I guess I was always equating manic depression with bipolar, but really, it could be bi polar with the rage and depression too, right? These days I have the rage well under control through medication, therapy and daily vigilance (eating right, watching the drinking, exercising, meditating, planning my day, etc). But I never could quite diagnose my rage. Thank you for your blog. I don't feel quite as alone anymore.

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:24pm

Yes. I'm feeling cheated this time round. Although that could be that I am just not riding it. I am not leaving home with just my paints and laptop, I am not phoning up all my male friends and suggesting we add benefits to our relationships, I am not going out dancing until 3am. That's what the wolves want. Yeah - way to destroy my life, wolves!They have never been quite this bad before, so it's back to the mental health team next week. I'll let you know how I get on...

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:27pm

And Lexi - so pleased you have your rages under control. Please share about your diet. The drinking - yes - got it!

Mj Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 2:54pm

I feel your ... Well everything. Mostly I feel your frustration in recognizing what's going on but not being able to do anything about it. I think therapists and doctors think isolation is a symptom. I suppose you could say that. But I know I choose to "isolate" out of care & concern to not do damage to friends, family--even strangers are not safe from irritability and rage.
I hear you Mary. Hang in there. You know it passes. We'll be here.

Mary Wednesday Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 3:26pm

The constant and supportive presence of you guys is such a source of comfort and strength. Appreciate you all so much...

Salt Water Mum Wed, Oct 26th 2016 @ 11:05pm

'A prickle of hedgehogs' - nice one Mary !

Sleep well everyone,


S Thu, Oct 27th 2016 @ 8:13am

Love it! Sx

Audrey Fri, Oct 28th 2016 @ 8:45am

Dearest Mary, The daffodil bulbs are bought and the spot in my valley garden chosen. Golden Mary will be gently planted under the lilac tree with plenty of room to glow with beauty when she appears, Oh and I hope you wont mind but I though I may plant one close to her called Amber Audrey so that you know you are never alone. I'm sure the lovely little blonde hedgehog chaps will be ever so pleased to see us there!

Linda Fri, Oct 28th 2016 @ 1:13pm

Loved this post this is just how I often feel xx

Nicco Sat, Oct 29th 2016 @ 2:59am

What an amazingly descriptive blog, Mary. I could identify with some of those destructive wolves and the prickly hedgehog, and with what MJ said. And what a lovely idea, Audrey. Sending gentle hugs (despite the prickles!) to you, Mary.x

Jon Fri, Nov 4th 2016 @ 4:44pm

Thank you Mary. I was married to a hedgehog. A little over three years ago my marriage disintegrated in a hail of prickles. Had I known more about what was going on inside my wife's mind, in the way you describe, perhaps we could have kept the marriage alive, enjoying the good times, weathering the storms. Jon

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