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What It Looks Like to Come Back After a Bipolar Disorder 'Crash'

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Sometimes when you “hit the pavement” with your mental health, it takes some time to collect yourself. You roll over, lay on your back for a minute or two and then maybe get in a sitting position. Brushing yourself off begins and you start assessing the damage.

• What is Bipolar disorder?

Dealing with a crash after some hypomania feels just like this for me. I can’t just “pop back up.” I need to spend a few minutes on the ground getting my head together and collecting the energy to stagger back to my feet.

I’d love to say I gracefully rise off the ground with my head held high and carry on with a renewed sense of purpose, but that would be a lie. Picture a woman staggering to stand, taking a second to steady herself, then slowly and painfully limping forward with her face wincing and her eyes fixed on the ground. Now that’s more like it.

My eyes gradually soften and my chin comes up. My stride steadies after a bit and picks up pace. But it takes time.  Medication. Self-reflection. Self-care. Routine. The care of others.

With my arsenal of tools, I eventually get back to my regular shuffle in my day-to-day life. The process certainly doesn’t look pretty to me, but it works.

Recovery can be so ugly, it’s beautiful.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741.

Thinkstock photo via sanchesnet1.

Originally published: August 20, 2017
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