In With The Blue, Out With The Black

OK, self. Time to breathe…….in with the blue……out with the black.

It’s a relaxation technique taught to me long ago by a friend who was a hypnotherapist—you’re suppose to take deep breaths and visualize the intake of “good” air (blue) and the exhalation of “bad” air (black). Sometimes it even works, as long as whatever’s got me wound up doesn’t have me wound too tight. I just have trouble remembering to do it before things escalate to the point where it wouldn’t do me any good even if I could remember.

I almost reached that point yesterday. The bumpy road I’ve been on the past couple of weeks took an unexpected detour, and after I got done with yesterday’s rant it suddenly occurred to me that crappy sleep + being sick + high stress = ugly hypomanic state. There. I said it. You have no idea how badly I don’t want it to be true, but the fact that I’ve been arguing politics, having trouble focusing, and even now am sitting here, tapping my good foot nonstop, is a dead giveaway. If I felt better, I’d be cleaning everything in sight.

But not to worry: I’ve gone back on my super-duper anti-crazy pill for a few days, and feel somewhat less wacky today. I don’t have TIME for this bullshit. I’ve been out sick all week, and I have to bring my “A” game to my intensive training session NEXT week. I can’t just stick my head in the sand and wait for this to get worse, which is why I started the Vitamin Z last night even though I wasn’t thoroughly convinced I even was hypo.

What it took was getting called out on FB by a friend who also is bipolar and can always tell I’m cycling by the nature of my posts. And then of course, Will just kept looking at me with this odd expression that I don’t always notice when I’m far down the road to Mania Land, but which means “I know you’re losing it, you know you’re losing it, and I KNOW you know you’re losing it. DO SOMETHING!!”

So, I’m doing it. I had to look at yesterday’s post to see what I’d written—memory is such a dicey thing when you’re hypo—and was actually heartened when I saw that I’d used the word “fuck” only once. Not that I’m proud of it, but as you all know I can be a MUCH bigger potty-mouth than this. I got a good night’s sleep last night, for which I paid a price because instead of coughing all night, I’ve coughed all. damn. day.

But it’s become painfully obvious over the past few months that sleep is a top priority, because I get nuttier than a squirrel when I go more than one or two nights without at least six hours straight. No wonder Dr. A was so insistent on putting me on a sleep regimen—when I follow it to the letter, I’m golden. When I have schedule changes and can’t make adjustments, or am under the kind of stress I’ve been dealing with for the past few weeks, or get double-teamed by asthma and bronchitis…….well, it just sorta goes to hell in the proverbial handbasket.

It’s just a damned good thing I had that chat with Dr. A last week. I’m absolutely FURIOUS that this is happening, but I just keep replaying the conversation about how relapses are going to happen no matter how strict I am with myself on meds and sleep. Nobody else on the planet is half as hard on me about this disease as I am, and at some point I’ve got to let go of the idea that I can control it completely. Even though I am stubborn and think I should be able to. Does that make sense?

In the meantime, it’s in with the blue……out with the black……`cough` `hack`


Published by bpnurse

I'm a retired registered nurse and writer who also happens to be street-rat crazy, if the DSM-IV.....oops, 5---is to be believed. I was diagnosed with bipolar I disorder at the age of 55, and am still sorting through the ashes of the flaming garbage pile that my life had become. Here, I'll share the lumps and bumps of a late-life journey toward sanity.... along with some rants, gripes, sour grapes and good old-fashioned whining from time to time. It's not easy being bipolar in a unipolar world; let's figure it out together.

4 thoughts on “In With The Blue, Out With The Black

    1. Thank you. I was afraid that sounded a bit tangential, but when I re-read it today it looked better than I thought it was. I’m glad it made sense to you. 🙂


  1. I can so relate to feeling ashamed about having a mood moment. The other day my psych pointed out that with all the shit going down if indidnt at least have a bit of a blip in moods he would be surprised . Hppe your brain starts behaving itself soon x


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