Why Again?

I posted this blog a few weeks ago, but being selected for the “Freshly Pressed” and “Daily Post” it seems more germane than ever.  I’m humbled and grateful for the overwhelming response of love and support.  I still have my struggles, and always will.  But this outlet and connection to the world and all the positive feedback has made an enormous difference in my perspective and resolve.  I will survive this.  And perhaps along the way I can help someone else survive their own struggles.  This is what makes it all worthwhile.  ~Thank you for being there and taking the time to share my journey.


Almost every blog I’ve ever read eventually does a ‘Why I write’ article and I guess I’m no exception.  I think maybe it’s a way to convince myself that there is a valid reason and a reminder as to why it’s become important to me.  I don’t feel like I need to justify to anyone why I go through this, but I’m hoping that if people know what’s behind my thinking perhaps it’ll make it more meaningful to them.

Writing helps me to organize my thinking.  Even when my thoughts are bouncing like a ping pong ball in a clothes dryer, I have to force myself to focus on one subject and try to present it in a reasonable and rational way.  Sometimes it comes easy and I can knock one out in less than an hour.  Other times I struggle to put it all together; writing draft after draft until I’m satisfied with the result.  Coming up with ideas is the same.  Sometimes I wake up knowing exactly what I need to say, other times I have no idea.  I try to write something every day, but I’ve learned that forcing a topic is like a fart: Push it too hard and you end up with crap.

I spend too much time by myself and the blog is a way to fill the lonely hours.  Even when I have an idea that more or less writes itself it still can take about an hour, plus I spend a fair amount of time thinking through everything.  I shouldn’t admit this but many times I actually do my writing the first hour or so at work.  For the most part my job isn’t particularly busy and it helps fill up the day.  I have a fairly long commute so I’ll think through my ideas on the drive in, and then write them out sitting at my desk.  At least I look like I’m working as I pound away on my computer.

Being alone so much of the time I feel like my blog is a way to connect with others.  Even though it’s completely anonymous I know that others are reading my words, and it’s almost like we’re talking, even if it is a one sided conversation.  The comments I get are wonderful; it’s affirmation that others can relate and sympathize.  Even without the comments I can see how many people have read what I’ve written and the country they’re from.  It’s extremely gratifying when I have a high number of ‘hits’ especially when they are so far away.  I don’t write just for the numbers, but it does help fulfill the need to be connected.  I’m constantly looking for ways to get my words out to others.

It may sound conceited, but I like to think I am helping others.  I have a story to tell, and I know how important it is to me that I know I’m not alone in my suffering.  So hopefully my words help someone else realize that they’re not alone and that there is someone who can understand and sympathize with their own circumstances.  Even though I’ve only recently accepted my illness, I’ve been dealing with it a very long time.  Maybe my experiences and thoughts from so many years of coping can give someone insight into their own disease.  If I have helped even one person, then it I have been successful.

Finally and most importantly, I write for myself.  This blog has become a big part of my therapy.  Not only does it keep me organized and occupied, but thinking through ideas and organizing my thoughts help me to realize many things about myself and my illness.  For the most part I try to keep my words upbeat and positive.  To be completely honest there are many days that I’m not doing nearly as well as I might sound, and my writings are based more on how I should be doing rather than how I actually am.  But that’s a good thing; it helps me keep things in perspective and sometimes I can convince myself that things are not as bad as they seem.  It’s not that I’m being dishonest; far from it.  Writing about darkness and suffering only reinforces the bad feelings and won’t be of any help to anyone, especially myself.  That’s not to say I’ve always been successful.  But even the down or out of control articles can give me hope.  When I am feeling strong and healthy I can see how far I’ve come and when I’m not it keeps me hopeful that I can get through it again.  Having a written record of past moods gives me something tangible to focus on.  It’s a way I can support myself and I frequently go back and reread old things I’ve written.

The bottom line is I would keep writing even if no one ever read it or I had no feedback whatsoever.  There are enough positives with just the process that make it all worthwhile.  There are times I write for hours that never make it to ‘publication’.  It may be too personal, or painful, or just an idea best kept to myself.  But the writing helps me learn things about myself, gives me focus and organization, and gives me a purpose and a goal.  I write for me; everything else is a blessing.

Thank you for reading.

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18 Responses to Why Again?

  1. jomaidment says:

    Yeah, I recognise so much of myself in this. In the reasons why I write and the benefits it brings. Sometimes I even just like to keep in the rambling, non totally structured prose for reflection to help me see how far I have come and travelled.
    Keep Going and remember you are important


  2. I very much think that you do help others, and the fact that you write for yourself as well as for others is such a good thing — I find myself writing positive things when I need a lift–similar to what you said about sometimes showing a less negative side than you are really feeling. The bonus here is that you express yourself so well–not only do you have something to say, you say it well.


  3. Great post again. And yes, you are helping many people as you have correctly learned (all the hits to your blog.) Lots of people will not comment on a blog. I read many blogs that I never comment on. Some are too difficult in the set-up to make a comment, etc. Anyway, keep on writing. You are doing a great service to others who have Bipolar Disorder and to those that do not understand what Bipolar Disorder is all about.


  4. Loved this post. I missed it first time around so thanks for reposting it. Keep on writing, you can feel when it really means something. Bipolar disorder is way more common than most people want to know, so this helps to open the door to understanding.
    All the best


  5. Northern Narratives says:

    Congrats on being Freshly Pressed! You have many good reasons here to write your blog so I hope you continue writing for a long time 🙂


  6. Julie says:

    “Acting as if” is something 12 Steppers are familiar with, but also the folks who suggest our language helps shape our reality. Nothing dishonest about it at all. And it works!


  7. cyelip says:

    We thank you for writing.


  8. kelihasablog says:

    I need to just “borrow” this instead of writing my own… It’s like you took the words right out of my mouth… LOL. Hang in there… It’s wonderful that you were selected for Freshly Pressed.. Congrats!


  9. zozespot says:

    A lot of what you wrote resonates with me! I am also bi polar and share with you the same reasons I started my blog. Congrats by the way 🙂


    • I read your blog on Suicide and can see we have traveled on similar paths. You apparently have learned as I have that it’s easy to condemn the act of suicide until you reach that point yourself. Thankfully we’ve pulled through and can continue to fight for survival. Thank you for sharing your story. We are not alone.


  10. Many congrats to you! I’m so glad to hear you were selected! Geez, I’ve been blogging on here for over a year and I still wasn’t selected. I’m thinking about stealing this one badge out there about not being selected for the daily post or the freshly pressed!


  11. Shawn says:

    I share your vision, your reasons and I am so glad for the reponses you have received (in fact I want to add to them – great work!).
    lately i haven’t written about depression as much because my circumstances stopped being so wonderful (loss in the family) and i didn’t want to be self-serving in anyway through my family’s grief. But writing (regardless of who reads) has been a huge help, as you said and that occasional validation or notice is so satisfying. Thank you for writing and adding your voice to a difficult discussion.


  12. frequentneed says:

    Sort of put myself in perspective with this. thank you


  13. GiRRL_Earth says:

    You and I think a lot a like and approach our blogs in very much the same way. It’s nice to know I am not the only one who struggles with content. I have written stuff only to wind up deleting it because it is either too negative or I am passively-aggressively slamming someone I am upset with. Also, like you, I have a long commute so often times I figure out my “stories” while I ride the train into to the city and upon arriving to work, I will immediately open up a Word doc and bang it out. Sometimes, I’ll write something and ruminate over it for days… Perhaps it is safe to say that anyone who blogs goes through these same trials and tribulations?…


    Keep the posts coming, you are a terrific writer.



  14. Nicole says:

    Agreed. Writing is so helpful in getting me outside of my head. Sometimes I write stuff and go….oh wow. That’s why I have been so stressed. Somehow it helps bring those things to the surface. Leopard up the great work!


  15. Jo says:

    Hi there,
    I read your earlier post attracted to it by the title, curious to know about your decision. Never guessed what your decision was about be till I started reading. Once I started reading though, I was hooked. You were talking about my daughter. My beautiful, smart, intelligent twenty-one year old. She is the brightness in our home, the joy of our hearts.At least, she used to be. Until she went to bed and pulled the blanket over her head several months ago. Now she stays there an average of 20 hours of the day.
    She stays there not because she got no friends or nothing to do. Se doesn’t eat not for shortage of food or money. She chooses to not speak not for lack of loving people around her. Quite contrary. She is the apple of the eye of a rich dad, is on the council and board of several voluntary organisations and youth branches of international organisations, heads various clubs at her uni, is on the uni student board. She has a loving brothers and sisters, a mom who keeps meals at her place at the dining table even while knowing that by evening most probably three meals would have accumulated.
    Yet my daughter stays under her blanket. I see her healthy weight coming down as fast as the enthusiasm for life in her beautiful black eyes. She started uni to become a doctor. Told me she would specialize in cardiology, her happiest trip would be when she would travel as part of Doctors Without Borders. Asked me to be her first model for portrait photography when she got her Canon 5D to pursue her hobby, also working as a freelance photographer.
    That was before she went to bed and pulled the blanket. This week I learned she had been suspended from uni months ago for failing her course. I picked up her beloved Canon from under a chair after I have been seeing it there for the past couple of months.
    I am sorry I do not know what you are suffering from nor do I understand the level of your pain.I have no idea what is bipolar. I only feel the pain, the hopelessness in my daughters now haunted eyes. On the rare occasion that our eyes would meet, I sense an apology there, as if she is saying “sorry I have to leave you”. More than anything, I miss my best friend. More than life itself, I want her back. But I have no idea how to reach her past the blanket. Tried, I have. Still I am trying. It must be very dark, very cold and very lonely under the blanket. Just like you say.

    By sharing your story, you have revived a mother’s determination to get back her daughter. Thank you. You will be remembered each time I reach out to help my best friend. Please dont leave those who love you.
    best wishes


    • I enjoyed this post as I too can relate to the reasons why I write. But after reading the hearfelt respopnse from Jo in the comment above mine I am at a loss for words. As a mother and a mother of a daughter who struggles with life my heart and prayers go out to you.


  16. Dawn says:

    As one the has Bipolar I can only say that I know it is hard and often frustrating for those around us,I haven’t been following this blog lately, but I do love this site. My mania still plagues me, and I struggle on a daily basis. I have been depressed for over a month now, and really didn’t want to admit that to myself.I am usually on the high end (manic) of bipolar but seems my cycles are changing and I have .now become very depressed.Isolating and just not wanting to do much of anything.It is an effort for my to even post here..I am just weary, so very weary.
    Bipolar is exhausting


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