Tuesday, August 27, 2013
For a very long time, actually years, I haven't attempted it, though I have fought the urge to give into the ethereal peace it brings on several occasions. Many people know the peace that follows the intentional actions, many don't understand, they haven't walked in the midst of the oppression that bipolar, especially uncontrolled bipolar, can bring.
Medications, therapy, research, determination, and distractions have gotten me through times when self harm has tried to take control of my mind. I'm determined not to allow it to win. Some of the actions I have chosen as distractions are a form of self harm. They are acceptable by many, and are seen as taboo by others. For me, however, they are favorable. They are huge steps forward and signal that I can control my, once uncontrollable, actions. I am in charge, they are not.
Last week a bout hit me. I was almost overtaken by the overwhelming allure that dangled as a carrot before me. I had been blindsided with doubt, despair, rejection and the feeling of being alone. It was a simple incident, but the effect it had on me was shattering.
The thought did cross my mind, but only for a second. I breathed deeply and decided distraction was my only option, my way to control the urges that were trying to take me down into the pits of Hell and to the demons that fight for my soul.
It was then I made a call, and set an appointment, to have my nose pierced. I've wanted it pierced for years, but was always doubtful. I then realized I had made my decision not to have it pierced earlier in my life because of what people might think. Well, I believe they would receive a tiny piercing in my nose much more than they would scars on my arm. I did it the next day, and I love it, I totally love it. One of my kids said to me the other day, "Mom, I was afraid when you said you were going to do that, but I like it, it's really is cool." Score!
While I was in the shop for the piercing, one of my tattoo artists looked at a tattoo he had done for me months ago. He said he noticed there were places that needed to be touched up. I didn't see any, but he did, so I made an appointment for today.
I was sitting before him, my arm resting on the padded table, and I watched intently as he put each item into its proper place. It was then I knew, even though the urge was no longer with me, that I was actually looking forward to the feeling of the needles of his gun as they embedded ink beneath my skin.
That realization had me perplexed. I felt great, I was doing well, the previous urges had been quelled by distraction. Then it hit me, the situation I had been faced with earlier in the week had not been resolved. Even though I had no intention, no thought, no plan of harm, I wanted to feel the comforting sting. The closer he lowered the gun to my arm, the more I felt the tension lifted.
With that first touch, I breathed deeply, I allowed my head to fall back, and I savored the release of the pent up emotion that was allowed to be discharged with each stroke the artist made.
Does that make me strange, a freak, or just someone that has learned how to control an unacceptable urge that happened to be gifted to me by a genetic defect?
I am the victor, I shall win this battle, and the ones to come. At times, I may slip a bit, but I am realizing more with each day how to conquer those times, how to recognize the signs before they take me in their talons, and turn the tables. It's a battle I'll always fight, but it is one that will not take me with it.