Pursuit of pleasure to lonely walk down a pictureless hallway

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A story about minor mood lability. Many of us have it on occasion. People with bipolar disorder even more often, usually.

I remember one day maybe five years ago sitting in my therapist’s office feeling like I was on the edge of my seat. I had been feeling a bit depressed for a while prior to that day, but my mood was improving very rapidly. I told her, “Renee, I’m going to set out on a pursuit of pleasure. I’m ready.” To that I believe she asked me what exactly I meant. In response, I told her I was going to trip the light fantastic and paint the town blue. She grimaced, but said nothing.

Those who have read some of my past posts know that sometimes I get a hunger for fun and sensational sensory stimulants. Sometimes it comes out of nowhere. Somehow stepping out with a huge smile on my face and open ears becomes extraordinarily attractive to people. Being ready and willing to carefully knock on people’s figurative “doors” often opens them up. A friendly compliment or observation, or just “Hello” to a stranger breaks down their barriers and interrupts their stress-laden or mundane rumination.

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I have always been an advocate of simple pleasures. You’d better believe that I like big pleasures, too, but several simple pleasures added up can be as exhilarating and one big one. So later that day I went out and headed first to the café. Again, with a huge smile, my face full of color and brilliance, my hair curly and wild, and my body movements gracefully dance-like and magnetic. People started talking to me just out of curiosity about my apparent supercharged “happiness”. It was as if they wanted to get involved in some way, maybe in hopes that my glee might wear off on them a bit. “Hi, I’ve seen you here before. Are you a regular?” And with that question a conversation starts, and inevitably this stranger and I find things in common and chat for what seems like an hour.

Next place I go is my favorite pizzeria. “Hello, Cindy!” yelled at least three of the young guys, as if they worked at the TV bar “Cheers”. Yes, they’ve known me for years. Then “Nacho” comes and gives me a big kiss. To another cute guy I yell out “Corona!” Then Nacho delivers my salad (with extra bread) and says “Here beautiful” and I smile. Maybe even if I’m not stereotypically beautiful, I looked beautiful at that moment because I glowed. I felt I was beautiful. After that, I sashayed out the door and further wandered around town. I skipped to and sang little songs to myself.

Later that night I talked my husband’s ear off. He heard all of my stories of flirtation. Memories of the day and other crazy thoughts raced in my mind until 3 o’clock in the morning. I set out again the next day, on the train. Walking down memory lane. The experience lasted maybe a week before I seemed to finally tire out. My husband had been shaking his head. It wasn’t anything much to worry about, though. It wasn’t progressing too far.

hallwayA crash did indeed follow the high flight. Switch. I eventually slept over 10 hours one night. I woke up with no motivation to get the normal chores and errands going. I stayed in bed in my little bedroom. Then I pushed myself to get my hubby breakfast, on autopilot, with some groans and moans. Later I drove to the grocery store for a few things, but my eyes stayed on the line of the road. At the store I walked down the aisles half blinded, only seeing what I needed. In the cashier line I slowly unloaded my groceries, saying nothing. No one seemed to hear or see me. It was like walking down a pictureless hallway to just a single spot. Then I turned around and walked back down to my enclosed bedroom back to bed. Time passed. I thought about my pursuit of pleasure like it was a blip in my life time line. Now my time line is running flat, like a heart monitor of an almost dead person. When will the defibrillator come back?

So nothing really MAJOR happened above, but when your mood is elevated, things seem especially marvelous, even if they aren’t particularly so. And when they go low, things seem especially dull or horrible. The reality of the experiences may have been more balanced than how they perceived, but at the time I didn’t know it.

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16 thoughts on “Pursuit of pleasure to lonely walk down a pictureless hallway

  1. michellesmultifariousmusings May 10, 2017 / 3:17 pm

    I completely understand. I too have high moment when the sun is bright and the world is my oyster and then inevitably it is followed by darkness and everything feels as if the sun will never shine again.

    Alas, the sun does rise again and the world is once again my oyster.

    Liked by 1 person

    • updownflight May 10, 2017 / 3:26 pm

      It does always seem to be the case. Sometimes it takes a while to make the switch, but it happens. It reminds me that yesterday’s Daily Post word was “temporary”, I believe. Negative feelings are temporary, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Nel May 10, 2017 / 3:17 pm

    Great post. I loved how you walked us step by step through your story making it relatable. I feel that way sometimes, I just wish I had the luxury to stay in bed all day on those days instead of pretending for the public.

    Liked by 1 person

    • updownflight May 10, 2017 / 3:28 pm

      Hi Nel. I know how hard it is to have to go to a job or do too many errands out when you feel unwell/down. I’ve been there. I’ll admit that I’m home now, which helps me, but someday soon I’ll have to manage again.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Nel May 10, 2017 / 3:31 pm

        Oh boy. I believe in you! And you can always vent to us here 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • updownflight May 10, 2017 / 3:36 pm

        Thanks, Nel. You are also welcome to vent to me, if you ever need to. WordPress is very welcoming.

        Like

  3. mindofmentallyill May 12, 2017 / 3:57 am

    I love this post. I love how you went through it and made it seem like I was actually there. I can relate to this so much. I am in a place right now where it feel like the sun will never come back out. I wish I could stay in bed instead of pretending for everyone around me and my job. Sometimes my job makes it worse because I hate it so much. Your post made me feel a little better and made me feel like not giving up because the sun will rise again. Sometimes it just takes longer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • updownflight May 12, 2017 / 10:45 am

      That makes me so happy that my post gave you hope. You definitely should have hope. Sometimes it only takes just a little spark to make things change. Please try to find the little things in the day that can give you some pleasure.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mindofmentallyill May 12, 2017 / 11:58 am

        Yes, sometimes all you need is that one thing. I try my best to find the little things through the day that make me smile and hold onto them very tight. Sometimes it’s what keeps me going.

        Liked by 1 person

      • updownflight May 12, 2017 / 12:22 pm

        Yes, those little things add up, too.

        Like

  4. BronxBiPolarChick May 17, 2017 / 3:39 pm

    Oh man sounds just like me… I would call it a thirst for life which inevitably turns out to be fun lol awesome post

    Liked by 2 people

    • updownflight May 17, 2017 / 3:43 pm

      Occasionally I still have that thirst for life, but must admit that it has been quelled a bit. Thanks for your nice words about my post.

      Liked by 1 person

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