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On Finding Silence (And Even Embracing It)

For celebrating the new year, my companion and I took a day trip to Saint Augustine. It was nice to have some peace and quiet with him; for each of us to fill our quiet time with each other, to soak each other in.

It wasn’t until I had woken up though, next to my companion, when his sleeping body, his silence, filled in my own inner chaos. His little twitches, his small noises, suddenly felt so magnificently beautiful. In that dim hotel room, I found a deeply meditative beauty.

Throughout the week, I listened to many ambient songs & audiobooks on self-care and self-healing. Along with this audio, as well as reading many books about taking responsibility for your story, I started to meditate. Listening to the needs of my own body. Once upon a time, I would have thought that this act of contemplation a luxury. Now, I see that being in the present--with my body, with these sounds and feelings--should be taught everywhere. Because to hear yourself is to know yourself.

As a result of this, I started to journal and write within these spaces. Meditating on what the past means to me... how I truly define freedom. And I discovered, through writing an essay on "free-diving" into the emotions of my past, that freedom means reframing your personal history and gathering a deep sense of appreciation from it instead of fear. To unanchor myself from these shadows and make them more beautiful is freedom.

To be content in this body, with my heart, is freedom.

Free-diving into emotion isn't easy; I had spent about five years taking responsibility, editing, and trying to get the story of my past right within my graduate program. I had teased out the story through poems and artwork and songs. But it wasn't until I submitted my final thesis, after a trip to Italy, that I felt I had finally closed that sad chapter.

As a result, I have found myself in loose sounds. These contemplative songs of nothing but an acoustic guitar, soft synths, barely audible voices talking in the background. These audiobooks and physical books where I would journal about a craft or message and find that there is nothing to fear about rooting yourself into the reality of now.

Even if my companion and I are too scared to label how we occupy space in each other's lives--even if our futures don't align--I am grateful for him because he has taught me how presence is all about staying in the moment. About also honoring who you've been before each other without judgment. I adore my companion for this. He has been the one to teach me that free-diving isn't at all scary. That it's only fearful when you don't have the right tools or education to do it.

#livingwithbipolar #Bipolar #Bipolar1 #Relationships

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A book about bipolar, twitching and ultrarunning...


My name is Tristan Reid and I hope you will be interested to learn about my unique and fascinating memoir, You Don’t Look Like An Ultrarunner.

You Don’t Look Like An Ultrarunner (from obsessive twitcher to unlikely ultrarunner, negotiating life with a bipolar brain) follows my life from my time working in a zoo in Cornwall, to finding employment as an ecologist in Cumbria.and on to the present day.

This book is a compelling read that looks at the obsessive world of twitching, international birding, tattoo collecting and ultimately, ultrarunning. All with the very difficult challenges that come with a bipolar diagnosis.

You Don't Look Like An Ultrarunner follows me as a former twitcher, ecologist, tattoo collector and conservation activist as I negotiate life’s difficulties either side of my bipolar diagnosis. This story follows my journey across the UK and Ireland, into the Arctic and south to the Middle East , Turkey and the Republic of Georgia before I find some belonging as a very unlikely ultra distance runner on the fells and trails of the Cumbrian Lake District.

This book is the book that I wish I'd read close to my diagnosis. It will help people understand what life with bipolar can be like, and it should give some hope to those with a similar diagnosis.

My book is avaliable in Kindle, Paperback and Hardback formats on the Amazon platform.

I really hope people find my book both a comfort and a joy to read.#Bipolar #livingwithbipolar #MentalHealth #livingwellwithbipolar #ultrarunning #birding #Twitching #coping

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Bipolar Rage

How do you all work through your bipolar rage? I feel as though mine is getting worse and I’m having a harder time controlling my urges to lash out, break something, or hurt myself. I do not self harm, but in those moments of bipolar rage, I’m scared that I would. #Bipolar #BipolarDisorder #bipolarrage #livingwithbipolar

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Finding Joy

Have you ever just searched the internet and looked for something that can make you smile? I am finding it more difficult these days with all the painful actions taking place.

Like many of you, I am sad about the war in Ukraine. I am also sad about the natural disasters that have occured in the USA and the risk for more things occurring in the Central part of the country with it being tornado season. Life is scary!

I am looking for #Happiness and looking for #Comedy . Sometimes we have to seek things on purpose in order for us to experience #Joy .

Lately, I have had a flair up of my bipolar symptoms, and I have not been able to concentrate. However, positive distractions have #helped me to #feelbetter . #BipolarDisorder really sucks sometimes. But the coupling of BP with other issues like #Anxiety are even more struggling. But, I am going to do whatever I can to keep a smile and find #RoomForJoy .

I hope you enjoy the cat genie meme!


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Bipolar: My Story #BipolarDisorder #BipolarDepression #livingwithbipolar

Bi-polar disorder is a rollercoaster ride.
The mania part is chaotic.
The best part of mania is that I’m so optimistic about everything. I’m my most creative during this process, so I’m writing shit down, making plans, playing the guitar and upbeat.
I tell my shit jokes to everyone, acting like a big clown. I get a lot of satisfaction from the laughs and smiles I can get out of people. It makes me feel good.
Every morning I wake up ready to go, even if I didn’t get much sleep the night before. I don’t really need that much sleep, so I just go and go and do so much. I see all my friends, have a blast, get everything done on my to-do list, and more.
And do I talk. I’m all over the place, dominating every conversation. I’ve been told to shut up and I switch topics so quickly that it’s hard for others to keep up with me. Sometimes I can’t keep up with myself.
When I’m depressed, I want to be left alone. It’s not that I want to be by myself; I want everyone to disappear. I don’t want to go anywhere, see anyone, or do anything.
Middle ground I imagine what it’s like for everyone else — normal people. I wake up in the morning and I feel fine. I don’t dread going about my day. I go to work, get things done, and have plenty of energy throughout the day.
I’m not stressing out over small problems, I enjoy the little things, and I’m not loathing the future.
I feel normal and it’s how I see myself. I’m not some lunatic running around or some mopey, lethargic mess. #BipolarDepression #mystory

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When I Get #RacingThoughtsThatMakeNoSense

Over the last two years I have not had many days where I've experienced #RacingThoughts .

A few weeks ago I did wake up with racing thoughts and it felt like I was in some different world. It felt like I was on the other side of glass looking into my life and thinking a million different things about my work, life, my personal life, my family, friends, pets, environmental things, and politics among other things.

Racing thoughts feel as though my thoughts are a racing car and the thoughts are going 100 mph and at times swerving out of control. I tend to get confused when I have racing thoughts- life seems to be a blur thus life gets more stressful when I have them.

Truthfully at the moment I don't have a tool to deal with them. Meditation and mindfulness are recommended but I am so lazy when it comes to doing that.

I am going to try my hardest to get into meditation and mindfulness training. I know research backs the efficacy of it and my therapist is always recommending me to practice mindfulness. #MentalHealth #livingwithbipolar


Taking it one day at a time

I am a 50 year old African American male, a boyfriend (yes, at 50), single father of 4 (23, 22, 19 & 15) who works everyday to manage my Bipolar Disorder with medication and therapy.

I had a challenging 2018, from a stress perspective; however, 2019 is trending better. I am presently in a monogamous committed relationship that required me to share my disorder with my girlfriend. I felt it was important for me to be completely transparent before walking with her too far down the relationship path. Despite the many different examples and possibilities I shared to scare her away, she chose to stay. Who knew (LOL)?!

I am fortunate to have one of the most supportive, kind, patient and understanding woman I have ever met in my life. Recently, I had a stressful situation that would have typically led me to spiral into the abyss. Her ability to show support and find the perfect mix of being present and space was new to me. I had been used to my significant other telling me to get over myself, and it is not that bad. It is funny, people can absolutely think not to ask the man with a broken arm not to lift something; however, will throw caution to the wind with their comments to a mentally ill person during a difficult time.

Surviving this last manic-depression episode reminded that my disorder requires me to take life and life’s situations one day at a time. I was reminded my mind will sometimes make me believe an issue is insurmountable, when in fact the problem has a solution. Finally, I was reminded not all people related to me or in my life are good for me. I was reminded that many people in my life were excellent of randomly reminding me of something from years ago as leverage to get something today.

This is my first post, but I plan to share with complete candor on both my good and bad days in hopes of reminding everyone the sun always shines again. Our minds have the capacity to make us believe life is far worse than it is, and no one can truly love and support you.

Please remember, the sun will shine, and we all have the ability (and deserve) to have unconditional love in our lives. ##livingwithbipolar

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#BipolarDisorder #Anxiety #Depression #livingwithbipolar

When I was 15 in 1999 I was misdiagnosed with severe depression and spent over two months in outpatient therapy, once I was out I took Zoloft until I ran out and for two years used tools I learned to use from therapy to handle my depression. Then in April of 2001 I was a junior in high school and mania came out of nowhere and I was home with nonstop energy, racing thoughts and no sleep, after nearly six nights I checked myself into the psych ward of a local hospital and finally had the right diagnosis, bipolar disorder and began a medication regimen while in the hospital and keeping appointments with my psychiatrist and taking my medications daily. Last year around this time my meds decided to quit and I was hypomanic. Working for Walmart and needing to take a leave of absence during the busiest time of year was not east but my mental health was more important. I am happy to report I’m stable and happy to be able to share my story. Living with Bipolar Disorder is something I will be doing until the day I die. I’m very lucky and thankful to have a family who loves and supports me through all my struggles and I know I’m never alone. #Lifeisworthliving