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The Bipolar Symptom You Don't Hear About


They don’t tell you about not being able to sleep. And you don’t really notice it until it happens.

I’ve always had trouble sleeping, but never thought anything of it. I just figured that some people are morning people and others stay up all night. But then I found out it wasn’t “normal” to not sleep at night. It isn’t “normal” to be such a light sleeper that you can recall the conversations around you. It isn’t “normal” to get two to three hours of sleep in a three day period.

Apparently it’s all part of the bipolar sh*t.

And it is ridiculously frustrating.

Particularly tonight.

I want to sleep because I know my body needs it. And I know that is what I’m supposed to be doing when I lay in bed.

But my heart is racing and when I do those “breathing exercises,” it only makes my heart beat faster.

My mind keeps racing from thought to thought. Planning tomorrow. Thinking about memories from the past. Fantasizing about the future and working again. It just keeps going like the damn Energizer Bunny.

I want to sleep.

They also don’t tell you how lonely it gets. I can’t wake my husband up. He would be pissed. He would get moody because he works and gets up early for it. I get moody because he isn’t always the nicest when he’s abruptly woken up. But who can blame him? I don’t want to get up out of bed because then I’ll want to start doing stuff and that would make noise.

It’s 4 a.m. Quiet time.

I can’t help but think this is part of a manic episode. It usually is when I can’t sleep. Today I really went overboard with the cleaning. I was scrubbing the floorboards for goodness sake. And that doesn’t happen. Not unless I’m manic…

I’m hungry too. But I can’t eat. Then I’ll get my schedule all flipped around. Not that it isn’t going to be already. I’m going to need to find a way to stay up all day so I don’t flip my sleeping cycle.

I want to sleep. I just can’t get my mind to turn off. Or my body to relax.

They don’t tell you about the insomnia.

But why would they? No one likes talking about the negative things.

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Thinkstock photo via KatarzynaBialasiewicz.