A while ago I did the most incredible thing. I built an entire universe in our bedroom. I had gone to bed fairly late because I had a huge amount of energy and didn’t feel tired at all. I knew though, if I didn’t get to bed soon my husband would come and ‘remind’ me that I need to sleep. So there I was sitting up in bed creating this wild, colourful and spectacular universe with miniature planets orbiting our room and so many stars it was simply stunning. I cannot begin to convey how stunning and breathtaking it was. I was a creator!
I woke my husband up – OK I nearly knocked him out of bed with excitement – and exclaimed “isn’t it beautiful, isn’t it stunning?”. I was deliriously happy. However, rather than being happy he was annoyed that I had woken him up so roughly and suddenly at 3am. I didn’t hear any of that though. All I wanted him to see was how beautiful our room looked. He couldn’t see a fucking thing. I was devastated. I was convinced there was something wrong with him, how the fuck could he not see it? Was he bloody blind or plain stupid? It was lighting up our room it was simply impossible to not see it. How dare he get angry and how dare he not even acknowledge what I had created for him. I was so angry I wanted to punch his face into the back of his pillow. Actually I was so angry I wanted to kill him.
I’m not sure how I settled down, I actually can’t remember. I did mention several times over the next few weeks that I can’t believe he couldn’t see any of it that night. As time went on my episodes were cycling and I was experiencing debilitating depression followed by wonderful hypomania. I saw the hypomania as wonderful because I feel OK, energetic and I can get stuff done. I feel productive. Unfortunately it often leads to full blown mania – the type where I don’t sleep, take on too many projects and get none of them finished and hear voices, see things that other people don’t see, create things people can’t see and I spend too much money, act reckless and can become quite aggressive and suicidal.
Most people think that suicidal ideation only happens when a person is experiencing depression but it can also be experienced in full blown mania. In fact the suicidal plans I have concocted while manic would be 100% fatal if put into action. There would be no room for error – my brain plans really really well when I am in the beginning of mania – until I fall in a heap. I’m then left feeling like a zombie and finding my notes all over the place. Notes which don’t make any sense, writings where the feelings I express don’t resonate with me. Yet on some level they resonated enough for me to write them. I accept my brain is different so I don’t want to stigmatise that part of me that I can’t fully understand. So what I do is think to myself – well it’s my turn now, this brain that I know well is having her turn. The other brain will have it’s turn soon enough – it’s always just a matter of time.
With my recent breakdown it has taken some time to get back on my feet. I did however want to do one thing. I will never forget that universe I built, as crazy as that may sound, they are very real memories for me. I purchased a gold padlock that comes with two keys and I had it engraved with my husband’s name and my name on one side and on the other side it says “I built you a universe.” The significance of that padlock wasn’t me wanting him to believe me, but to simply let him know that when I was doing something so incredible in my mania it was him that I was thinking of and expressing love to.
The realisation of that was significant to me because I often struggle to be overly affectionate or romantic. I’m not a touchy feely kind of person and have too many sensory issues to even write about. My husband loves the padlock because it reminds him that in all of my worlds – he is a part of them all. I reckon that’s pretty romantic.