I’d been doing so well, riding high, lots of good spirits and just boundless energy. Pulled in multiple directions but digging it for once, feeling confident and scrappy, I hadn’t felt so positive and stable in years. I was a rock star at work. I was working out again after 10 months of rotator cuff problems. We were doing vegetarian meals 5 nights a week. Our AirB&B business was booming.
I should have seen it coming when the euphoria got huge. The crash, the pit, the darkness always follow.
I’ve never been diagnosed or even really checked properly…but my biological father is manic-depressive (and alcoholic, and some other stuff). My Mom’s side of the family is loaded with deeply melancholic folk, and some weird genetic insomnia which of course is a major cause of (and symptom of) Deep Melancholia. I have the insomnia, and I have the cycles of manic-depression. And Burton’s <a href=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0940322668/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0940322668&linkCode=as2&tag=yerfdog-20″>The Anatomy of Melancholy (New York Review Books Classics)</a> is a perfect volume for me: I often just read along, nod knowingly with a sardonic smile, and sigh.
I’ve spoken to my GP about it a couple times. He doesn’t really think it’s a big deal. He thinks I’m simply too intellectual and analytic. Both of those things are true (well, pseudo-intellectual is much more accurate). But those things don’t preclude the fact I may be manic-depressive.
I have no idea why I went into a major funk last weekend. I felt like everything I’d ever done was wrong, that my life was a complete fraud, that there was no way I could ever do the job I’d chosen because it was way too big for me, blah-blah, etc. And no rational or reasonable argument could have convinced me otherwise at that time. And I was quite capable of thinking “You know this is the downside of the cycle–hang in there,” but that meant next to nothing when I thought it. I honestly believed at the time that this was cynically motivated pandering to excuse myself for bad behavior.
It’s a really indescribable feeling. My outlook completely reversed, with no warning, no reason, no apparent cause…
But fortunately the bottom of the cycle was SHORT–it just happened to be quite intense.