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Marionette. Friday November 25, 2016

Today we are publishing the third blog in a series of five written by Mary:

You think I'm here with you, but I am far, far away.

You think it is me who is with you, but what you think is me is just a shell which looks and acts and talks like me.

Inside that shell, a vast universe. At the far end of the universe a star; a star with tiny planets, each with its own tiny moons.

I am alone on the smallest moon of the furthermost planet orbiting that faraway star.

I send signals and commands to the puppet's arms and hands and lips and feet. Each command takes a million light years to arrive, yet you notice nothing. You and the puppet you think is me do not exist in real time. Or at least, in the time that is real to me.

I can make the puppet move and dance and laugh and speak. The puppet is graceful and witty. The puppet performs immaculately, and you notice nothing. You do not see that I am not she.

And I am scared.

I am scared that one day the messages will not get through. I am scared of a total system breakdown. I am scared that one day the puppet will collapse in an ungainly heap of limbs and blank eyes with me trapped somewhere deep, deep and far inside.

I am scared that one day those messages really will take too long to arrive. I am scared I will crash the car or slice a limb while cutting up the chicken for dinner.

I do not have faith in the robot I have become.

And you may not visit my tiny moon. When you smile at me, that smile must travel a million light years to reach me; stripped of its warmth and meaning by the vast distance between us.

When you hold me in your arms that data is digitally encoded and arrives in binary format. I feel the sensation, but the soul in your embrace is gone.

I am not lost on my moon. I know where I am. But I do not know how to find my way home.

There are no magic red shoes. There is no yellow brick road. There is no wizard of Oz.

There is only space, and emptiness.

An unimaginable infinity of space.

I am at the far end of it all.

A Moodscope member.

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

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DAVE Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 5:37am

Hi Mary,

I feel quite sad for your situation, and know the feeling well.

I'm not sure which part of the Globe in which you reside.

We have a Bipolar Group meeting every Friday, today at 10:30am.
We sit and discuss our feelings, make positive suggestions, help each other practically,.

We keep in touch during the week, and generally keep aware of how each are feeling, and make day or night time calls if necessary, to those of us who are desperate.
If you were living in the RINGWOOD area of Hampshire England you'de be at 'HOME' and more than welcome.

But you've explained what is going on in your mind....MENTALLY...

BUT WHAT DO YOU DO PHYSICALLY...Together with a friend....

How do you fill each day of the week, each moment, in Joy, Pain, and/or suffering...Is ther one particular activity that deflects your mind from these very very negative soul destroying thoughts. ? ?

YOU are not alone with these thoughts, not unique, we have all experienced and some currently living with these emotions.

We have to overcome these negative thoughts, somehow....I do this by serving others, it has a two-Fold edge, it helps me more than the person whose 'Hands are Down', by keeping ourselves occupied, taking charge of he negative and slowly through continual practice, refusing to 'GIVE IN'.keeping ourselves from SLIPPING Down 'That Slippery Slope'.

Also we must hope for changes, MINDST, Positive affirmations in the mirror as previously suggested Mary......BUT we MUST continue to be determined to take Charge of the Brain, and REFUSE to allow the Brian to receive NEGATIVE messages..Everytime a negative thiught enters the mind say, 'BUZZ OFF YOU'RE NO WELCOME !!!!

Find an Anchor in which we can cling-on too,....

Dave X

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 6:11am

Hello Dave, thank you for your kindness and compassion and offer of help. I live in Cambridgeshire and also have a bipolar group in my home town. I have yet to join, but will be going along next Wednesday. While I am at the bottom here I have little in the way of physical energy to do anything at all; when well I probably do too much! Like you I have a faith. Yesterday I spent some time with my brother, also a man of deep faith, talking and praying (and eating lunch). These blogs however, were not written as a cry for help, but rather as an "everyman" description of what it is like for many of us. It is a way of giving words to those who have none so they can say to their family and friends "yes - this is what it's like for me too. Just like this. I am not alone. Others feel this way too." Also to give hope. I write about my bad times, but also about the good times. I hope the good times will come back sooner than I expect!

Tychi's Mum Sat, Nov 26th 2016 @ 5:45am

Mary, I can't thank you enough for putting in to words exactly what I go through when I experience a crash. My husband, who is wonderfully supportive, struggles to comprehend the feeling of hopelessness and despair. I have immediately saved this blog as a favourite and I will use it just as you have suggested, to give friends and family an insight in to the mental anguish and feeling of seperation that I experience. Thank you once again Mary. I hope for you that the good times arrive with you soon. As Dave suggests,find an anchor and cling on...and remember those vows you made to yourself. This will pass.... Tychi's Mum

LP Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 7:27am

Hi Mary,
It's such a good idea to take us through your painful journey with you.
I loved how beautifully crafted today's part is. I can identify with the fear of a low lasting or getting worse. It's that fear that for me makes it so bad, not the reality of the moment. It's the "What if...?".
Take care Mary and thank you. LP x

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:17pm

Yup - it's the fear that is the worst, really...

Angela Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 8:27am

Wow, that really spoke to me Mary, thank you for writing it. Xx

Rupert Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 8:44am

A brilliant blog Mary! It so encapsulates the feeling of detachment that many of us have experienced. Going through the motions with an outward appearance that shows no hint of what is really going on behind it. I am sure that those who don't know you well would be shocked to learn of the real you! We are all so good at keeping up a facade just to please those around us and I think that itself is sometimes exhausting.Rupert

Tutti Frutti Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 9:15am

Hi Mary Your description of depression is perfect again. A friend who is training to be a counsellor asked to come and talk to me about what bipolar is like to live with recently -both for her own information and for a presentation to others on her course. I think it's great that people are asking for the sufferer's viewpoint rather than just studying the theory although obviously it wasn't the easiest conversation for me. When we talked I gave her details of moodscope (as I am very grateful to the psychologist who recommended it to me) and explained how the test and the blog help me. If it's ok by you I would really like to tell her about your recent blogs and suggest that she reads them.

I am thinking of you and praying for you. Keep holding on and remember that what you are going through will pass however impossible that may seem right now.

Love TF x

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 9:47pm

Absolutely - of course you can share these on. Everything here is public. If it helps in any way I am delighted.

Hopeful One Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:11am

Hi Mary- thanks for a beautifully crafted and wonderfully well written series giving me an insight into your state of mind during a down phase.In your main blog and in your reply to Dave you say 'Also to give hope. I write about my bad times, but also about the good times. I hope the good times will come back sooner than I expect!' I whole heartedly support that until your optimism comes back.

And laugh when you can.It makes life more bearable.

Last night I was sitting on the sofa watching TV when I heard my wife's voice from the kitchen."What would you like for dinner my Love? Chicken, fish or lamb"?
...I said, "Thank you, I'll have chicken".
She replied," You're having soup. I was talking to the cat!"

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 9:48pm

I have two cats - both boys. I'm sure my husband thinks I love them more than him!

Michael Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:33am

Hi Mary, Yet another awesome blog!
I am unipolar and currently "in limbo", which means I can function and "appear" normal but I am comfortably numb.
I act from memory. I remember what it felt like to be compassionate and loving. So I have just been helping my elderly mum recover from an operation.
But I feel nothing.
I find it very hard to say "I love you" to my mum and wife as it seems inauthentic, if I am not feeling it (do I really mean it?...I cannot tell).

A question I have for those of you that cycle through bipolar is " do the feelings of love and compassion come back when you are high? And if they do, do they feel authentic?

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 9:56pm

Hello Michael. Something very wise which was said to me by a vicar many years ago is, "love is something you do, not something you feel. Love is action." You are loving your mother, even if you cannot feel it. You can say honestly to your wife and your mother "I love you" because you do love them, even though the chemicals in your brain are blocking out the feelings, just as clouds block out the warmth of the sun. But the sun is still there, as is your love. In answer to your question, I cannot answer for other bipolar sufferers, but I do not feel love when high either (I feel angry, irritated, impatient and superior). I feel love when "normal" - which is when I come out of depression but am not high. I am extremely lucky that I spend more time in that "normal" state than in either high or low. I hope Michael, that you come out of the numbness and are able to feel again sooner rather than later.

The Gardener Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:48am

Caroline will probably 'have a go' at this. I am SICK of misery - one night sleep in a fortnight - am doggedly preparing for a party - and people are accepting with delight, so I can't back out! Mr G is miserable, the weather's miserable, Moodscope's miserable (however important Mary's graphic history of depression is). Woman's Hour had someone with depression - but being very positive in stressing the importance of friendship (the subject matter was friendship). Again, up comes the sob-story of being a single mum. Many women are struggling alone because the husbands/partners would not/could not cope with responsiblity - or, a phrase I hate 'need their own space' as the partner of a friend of one of my daughters said as he walked out on her and adorable daughters of 6 and 4. Many women who are 'single' mothers wanted children but not blokes. Nobody, these days, has to have a child. The 'single mum' syndrome still tugs the heart strings - the girl who had 'been done wrong' being shown the door. Failed marriages in my own family and among so many friends can be put down almost 100% to intolerance and selfishness. I'm going to decorate my Christmas Tree - lift the clouds. Right Caroline, take your blue pencil (or what passes for one dealing with web sites). And, Mary, do hope you reach 'stability' in all the ups and downs of the evils of being bi-polar.

Jul Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 1:12pm

Hello Gardener. I'm feeling right now too that there is so much misery in this world and if the media cannot find any to report, they will make something up. It's called Post truth! I am sure Caroline will not take issue at all with your comments. Why on earth should she? Caroline is a great supporter of you and I cannot for the life of me see why she should take a blue pencil and scrub your comments. We all read your words and have northing but sympathy for you and your predicament, Caroline especially. (Think you've got her wrong there Gardener Lol!) I hope your get some sleep soon and the party is a great success. When is it? Love to you. Jul xxx

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:15pm

Just to warn you, Gardener, you may like to skip the next two blogs, because I wrote these five in the space of three days as I crashed very deep. I'm a lot better now (thank you Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors) and will write on happier topics for next Wednesday!

The Gardener Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 12:01pm

HO, thanks - only bright spot in the morning! Our cats, offered the choice, would have taken one and stolen the rest. The cartoon, for the late-returning husband 'Your dinner's in the cat/dog' is right.

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 9:57pm

Oh yes, show me a cat and I will show you a thief! I hope your party goes magnificently.

Hopeful One Sat, Nov 26th 2016 @ 8:10am

Hi Gardner- charmed and delighted.

Jul Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 1:26pm

Hello Mary. Do you think your depression that follows immediately after the bi polar period is particularly bad because of the stark contrast between the two states? I am constantly mildly depressed which sounds awful I know. I do recognise the feelings you describe however in today's blog but not so dramatically as you portray. When I have a good day (a sort of high bi polar day) which always follows a rare good night's sleep, my mood is elevated. However after that my mood plummets for next day but the following days, weeks and months, my down mood regulates of its own accord as that's the norm. I don't know if this makes sense to anyone! I am hoping your low mood will soon regulate and you will feel better about it. It seems that you plunge into the darkest of depressions after a period of highs and then when the depression is over, you leap into very elevated high spirits. I know you are suffering Mary but do or can you see anything good/positive about either state you experience. Goody two shoes that I am Lol!, I try to make the best of a bad job. This is me, mildly to moderately depressed, very anxious and an insomniac; however I live with it. Would it be possible do you think for you to accept this is what you are and you are well liked, your blogs are well received etc etc. What you describe so graphically and starkly is surely an exaggeration of your life? I do hope so. I know you are trying to help others. Love Jul xxx

Jul Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 2:19pm

I meant to write..."immediately after the HIGH period" (Not bipolar period) Julx

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:09pm

Bless you Jul, you are lovely! Yes, I do plunge into dark depression immediately following a high, and it takes ten days or so for the antidepressants to start to work (they kicked in yesterday - I am feeling much brighter today, thank you). When I come out I am "normal" for a few months before leaping into a manic state again. And - no, my descriptions are sadly not an exaggeration, it really is that bad: I wouldn't have the suicidal thoughts, else! Thank goodness for anti-depressants, though and I promise you that next Wednesday's blog will be much happier - even if it ends up being a paean to Citalopram! And yes - today I can receive the words of love and support you all give me - last week they would have been meaningless marks on my telephone or computer screen. But please - as I said to Dave, these blogs were written as a record of my descent into depression, and not intended to be a litany of complaint. So sorry that it's come over that way.

The painter Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 4:22pm

Mary, you write so beautifully about this horrendous illness ... I really love to read your work.
You describe the feelings of disconnection and being lost so well that it makes me see it in a much deeper way. I often feel disconnected and I can verbalise that, but you create a story ... a picture of what that actually looks like. I have never met you but I have read enough of your writing to know you are an incredibly gifted person and I hope you continue to write about the good and the bad times. I look forward to reading your book one day. xx

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:10pm

thank you so much. I hope to have my books available for you to read one day soon! ;)

The Gardener Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 5:10pm

Thanks Jul - my 'doubts' were that there might have been a 'critical' aspect - but I see Dave has posted much more graphically than I did. I think you have a place in France? 'Vive avec' is the name of the game. People are running across the road to say they are coming - kids too - so I am back to providing a kids 'play table' so the parents can settle to eat,drink and gossip. My very first party here, a couple said good-bye and thank you. I said 'haven't you forgotten something?' Blank look. 'Your children'. Oh, they're quite happy, they know the way home'. Another couple, the notary and wife, 'forgot' their children - ll and 7 I think. They were found upstairs, having discovered the late night erotic film. So, Saturday it is. I think you had a party - you've obviously survived, but did not leave you on a high? Today's miseries can be encapsulated by Hood 'No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease' etc.etc.

Mary Wednesday Fri, Nov 25th 2016 @ 10:11pm

Oh Gardener - I think we would all love to come to one of your parties!

Nicco Sat, Nov 26th 2016 @ 4:21pm

Mary, you have a wonderful way of describing exactly what it is like to experience the illness. You have given words to me where I had none. Thank you. Best Wishes to you, Nicco.

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