I was thinking about this today. I don’t hate much in life. I dislike things. When people piss me off I don’t hate them (I tend to wish a host of minor annoyances on people when they really get to me). Even the people in my life that have grievously wronged me. I don’t hate them. I try to wish most people well, and hope that people’s lives turn out positively.
But there is one thing I absolutely hate. Loathe. Abhor. And that’s my mental illnesses. Because of chemical imbalances I’ve lived a life totally different than I would have if I was neurotypical. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not unhappy with my life. My job and financial situation sucks right now, but I have faith it will get better soon. I have a wonderful husband who I adore and would be lost in the world without. I have awesome pets. I have amazing friends. But sometimes I can’t help but wonder about the life I could have had if I didn’t have bipolar disorder and anxiety.
Despite being under control (mostly; who has theirs perfectly under control all of the time?), I still make stupid decisions based on stupid gut reactions that upon further reflection make absolutely no sense. Why the hell do I do these things? Validation? The thrill of the risk? Or just because it seemed like a bloody good idea at the time?
How many of my decisions are made on some level by my illnesses?
(And why the hell are the Sounders’ and the Timbers’ color scheme and uniforms so similar? I literally can’t tell who is who.)
I totally believe that our life is shaped by a series of choices. If I chose A, my life goes one direction. If I chose B, it goes off on a different path. If I hadn’t gone out to get supplies for a school project when I was 17, would I still have been in a life-changing car accident? If I had kept seeing Brad when Mike and I first met instead of breaking things off, how different would my life had been? If I hadn’t quit my job last year, what would be happening now? (Probably nothing good, in regards to the last question.) If I didn’t have bipolar, would my life look anything like it does now?
Maybe I’m being introspective. Maybe I’m being nostalgic, but I’ve spent a good part of my day puzzling over this today.
And it’s not that I’m unhappy. Far from it, really. But… I guess sometimes I just wonder.
(Fear not, the Sounders just scored so I no have a reference for who is who.)
At the end of the day, I know my mental illnesses have interfered with my life in big ways. Some of it tangible, some of it not. But there’s also the question of why me? I think those of us that struggle with disorders like these ask this at least from time to time. Why did this combination of genes unwrap who’s sole purpose is to fuck up my brain chemistry? What made them do that in the first place? Or even sometimes how did I end up with these genes in the first place? Fuck you, biochemistry.
I guess that this is one of those times that I know my meds are working. By all rights I should be depressed after thinking like this all day. But I’m really not. I’m kind of sad about the loss of lives that will never be lived, but not like I have been in the past. It’s not an all-consuming thought. I just kind of wonder, sometimes. And sometimes I mourn the loss of those lives.
(In case anyone cares, I’m apparently rooting for Portland as they just scored and I cheered without thinking about it.)