Not even death can take you…
Not even death can take you…
A lot has shifted in me since I met her seven to eight months ago.
Instead of the ever painful “where is she?” I constantly asked myself in the past, it turned into “This person is right in front of me… I more than love her to death, and her me.” That, right there, changes a man. I am loved completely like that and know I love her just as much.
I can tell you there are ways that are very basic that it changes me, as well as ways I do not yet understand.
This is the happiest I’ve ever been in my life.
Deep in the darkness,
Demons rode our shoulders; Now
possessing God’s Light
God’s Light is frying our demons of the past. All of what we went through was worth it for a future with each other. God has turned a lot of darkness into light in our lives through each other. We found each other in the dark. Thank you, God.
One may expect nothing good coming from completely losing one’s mind to madness, and dealing with the aftermath. I often heard the cliches about how I would be a stronger person as a result and I would learn so much through these experiences. However, looking back, those words of encouragement only spoke of the beginning of what I gained resulting from embarking on the recovery process.
I did a little bit of reflecting in my journal this evening about what I have lost and gained over the past fourteen years, since I was diagnosed with bipolar I following a psychotic break.
Here’s a small list of profound losses I experienced within the past fourteen years:
I still struggle hard with my physical health and my ability to adequately care for myself. However, in the past fourteen years, I’ve regained much about the other items on the list.
So, not only have I gained back most of the above list of losses, I’ve found the following:
During recovery, there are seasons and there are trends. It was pitch black for many years of my life. I had therapy nearly every week for 9 months after my first episode, often focusing on the reasons why I shouldn’t commit suicide. All seasons of recovery present their challenges. Over time, the light becomes brighter, and during the seasons, this light will fluctuate.
However, just know that the deeper my pain, the deeper my loss, the more constitutive my loss… the deeper character I gain, the more I find, and the more cohesive I become as a result of these experiences. I’ve reached a point where I have become someone that is beyond my wildest dreams or imaginations, compared to fourteen years ago.
I’m at a brightly blossoming point in my road to recovery. I still have a ways to go, but I’m making progress faster than I have ever before. The truth is… those cliche encouragements did help a little bit when I took them in good faith. The darker the valley, the harder it is to climb out and the longer it takes to climb out. I had faith in myself that I could get through when I was unable to call on God for help and no one could be there for me.
One thing is always true: have faith in yourself. No matter how bad it is, you can overcome.
It’s been a long time since I’ve spoken to you from the heart, let alone written from the heart.
This journey is a lonely one and I’m in the middle of a piercing darkness. The light of your son is there in Christ Jesus, and it keeps me going, but it does not satisfy my here.
Thank you for showing me the Beyond, the Heavens, and Hades through my psychotic breaks. Without these visions, I would be more empty, fragmented, and lost.
Continue to show me the way you intend for me, and continue to give me the strength to push forward.
I know I will end up falling astray and will inevitably miss the mark of truth. God, I pray you show me truth and the way to shalom, for myself and those around me.
Keep me humble and malleable. Don’t let me lose perspective. I pray that all areas of knowledge, such as the scientific, philosophical, religious, and the spiritual may one day be united. I pray I may be an instrument in this process.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Looking back, I now realize that God has been silent in my mind for a very long time… years, in fact. I have heard God’s voice before in spirit, and I know my Lord’s voice. However, it is apparent I don’t know them well. I’ve been deceived by a number of different spiritual presences since, and I suspect the most pervasive one is my own inner voice.
In June 2016, when I drove myself to the mental health facility to be admitted as an inpatient, I was following something destructive. I ended up writing a few hundred pages in my journal while I stayed there, which I am still not ready to review as of today. That spiritual voice led me down some very strange rabbit holes. This included taking on the identity of the Angel of Death, drinking from cups signifying various things including the tears of the saints, and encouraged the notion of soul mates.
However, in the process of all this madness, I had a profound moment of deja-vu. I cannot tell whether I was sleeping or awake, but I remembered with utmost clarity a religious experience I had in 2003 after I blacked out then. A few months later, this recollection precipitated a chain reaction in my psyche. Under the guidance of my therapist, I revisited many angles of these experiences in my journal and have begun the process of unraveling the twisted rifts in my mind.
Why, I ask myself, is God silent now of all times? I can only speculate. I trust God will make it clear when He speaks to me again and reveal himself when I am ready. He must have a lot of confidence in me to be silent while I sort out a magnitude of burdens with the help of my friends, family, and therapist. While these are burdens, they are also some of my richest blessings and provide me with much wisdom and understanding.
Whether you are spiritual or not, what are some tools you have for sorting out your mind?
I’ve been absent for seven months because I needed to be hospitalized for a manic episode in June 2016. I needed to distance myself from writing online as a result of this.
However, I’m in a good spot again and plan to start posting again, including more personal content. My hope is that someone may benefit in one way or another from these upcoming posts.
So many things have been going on in my life… and much that I just cannot talk about anywhere but in my journals. God is making things happen around my friends and I. I don’t know where this is going, but I’m managing to stay sane throughout all these things.
If this were to happen to me a few years ago, I’d probably be in the hospital by now. I’m now strong enough that I can not only just stay sane but incredible things are happening in the process. I can be there for important people in my life and they are there for me.
Sometimes, I wonder if I’m in a psychotic episode.
Only this is not psychotic… this is God working in real life. Through extraordinary circumstances, 2 of my closest friends met from thousands of miles away for 5 days and fell in love and now he’s moving here with me to find a place in my hometown!
I cannot talk about my side, yet. Not yet.
In high school, I was really good looking and I could have almost any girl I wanted. However, I trusted God with everything back then. Then, my first psychotic episode happened along with a Bipolar I/schizoaffective disorder diagnosis. I started taking meds. I assure you, the trauma, the stress, and the meds all together caused me to gain a lot of weight. As a result, I’m fat now.
I don’t call them battle scars, but wounds that can heal. It’s been top 5 in my worst struggles in life I’ve ever had, that is, being fat. I remember how good it felt to feel good about my body and have all the energy and health and ability to do the things I want to do. Now that I’ve managed the trauma, the stress, and the meds, I sense a reckoning at hand soon!!! 🙂
I’m encountering something new lately in my bipolar world. For about a couple months or so, I’ve felt a little bit off… and it’s been getting worse the past few weeks.
My thinking is sharper but still slows down so I don’t feel elated. I get frustrated at nothing and ponder why I’m frustrated, hence getting more frustrated for no reason. I find I need to spend more patience than I need to. I don’t feel sad, blue, particularly happy, or even normal. I just feel the way I do, and I’m confused, and I didn’t like it. However, it’s very subtle and doesn’t always feel like the funk is there.
I took the Goldberg Depression test and scored a 14, and took the Goldberg Mania test and scored an 8. I fell in the “minor depression possible” category on the depression quiz and on the upper end of “no mania likely” category on the mania quiz.
These aren’t a replacement for therapy but they can be useful tools for dealing with moods and gauging how depressed or manic I am. Seeing this shows me yes, it’s very minor… but there’s possibly a slight depression going on and I’m also a little bit more up than usual on my test scores.
I’m not positive it’s a mild mixed state, but that’s my best guess at this point. I’ll be seeing my psychiatrist soon and this is a very minor thing at this point, so I’ll ask his opinion then.
If it’s worth anything, after going through those vivid psychotic experiences I went through, I found the other side is a wonderful place and it’s intricately connected to everything here, now.
It’s not a matter of who ends up there or who doesn’t… it just is. We’re all part of it, whether we know it or not.
One way I can describe such a perspective is waking up in a dream and having that become reality, being awake and asleep at the same time… becoming the living dead. The dream itself is nearly incomprehensible.
The living dead’s eyes are open and see what God allows them to see, never more than what we can handle.