It's 1am and I've just gotten out of bed and taken a shower. The shower was kind of a religious experience. Cleansing of the soul, I took inventory. It's not normal.
Not the shower, not the being up at one o'clock in the morning. But then, what is the normal for me? I've been going to bed around 9:30 to 10:00pm and sleeping through the night, with just a few pit stops, and getting up about 8am or so. The last couple days I've been on edge because my mood is quite elevated. I'm starting to see some warning signs. Saturday night, I was having trouble sleeping, so I ended up taking a sleeping pill. That helped my mind to finally relax and I slept for a while-- several hours-- and got up with my wife in the morning. Now tonight, I slept for about three hours and woke up (got worked up) completely and couldn't get relaxed for sleep again. This isn't mania, but it's a warning sign.
My wife had the good idea to start a blog or spreadsheet of this pattern, or deviation from the pattern. Just so we can keep track of all that's going on. I'm having grand ideas of going out into the world today and making things happen. That's not to say that I'm having grandiose thinking. That would be another sign that mania is coming.
I'm up early, but I'm under control. My thinking is logical and relaxed, not racing. I do have a lot on my mind, but it's not at breakneck speed or relentless. There's a grace to it. A serenity. I'm on the right path, I sense.
So much about managing this disorder is being in touch with your feelings and emotions, being mindful. Being mindful is a soulful, spiritual practice. It allows you to be who you are meant to be.
So I know that I'm making my wife nervous with this behavior. Hell, I'm making myself nervous. But I am checking-in with myself and I feel calm, collected. Under control. I'm not spiraling or groping for great truths. I'm just living.
I really enjoyed Angels in America (we finished watching it this weekend). It's "haunting" my mind, its dialogue replaying on loops. There are lessons there, as there are in many things. Most things. When the conditions in your heart are just right, anything can be a learning opportunity.