Home » Bipolar » More Masks Than Mardi Gras

More Masks Than Mardi Gras


Happiness is not simple and I find it so fleeting. It takes a lot of energy to patch anxiety with a happy face. I feel that the moments of happiness for me are so brief.  It is like a rare double rainbow that gets my attention when it happens, but fades too quickly.  My prayer for happiness includes an absence of pain in its many varieties.  I don’t drink or take drugs to numb the pain.  Trying to stay afloat of it, but having to go through it, takes so much work and effort.

My sadness sometimes overwhelms me into tears I cannot end.  I wish that I did not burst into tears when I hear or feel heartfelt emotions, but I believe that is part of being a highly sensitive person. I also believe that it freaks some people out! For that awkwardness, I do indeed apologize.

I try to keep going and put on a brave face.  I have more masks than Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

Despite a determined effort to try to keep it together, sometimes I simply cannot stop crying or keep that mask on tight. Other times, it means that I am quiet. People don’t realize that being quiet does not mean I am negative, or aloof, or trying to be rude. It means that I am sad. I am inside myself with a brain buzzing and trying to keep that straight face mask on.  The response to being quiet is sometimes so harsh that we, the introverted, stigmatized or disenfranchised, isolate even further.  When there is so much pain, self doubt, and fear in our own heads, why would we share it with someone and give them the power to exact more sadness and control?

For all of the feelings that I have, and take in despite trying not to, there is still a spark inside of me that wants to protect me and say I am a good person, kind, and try to care for others despite how they treat me.  It is incredible to think that with all the bad feelings, there is a spark of an ego, a self that wants to defend itself and be heard.  Knowing you have the ability to hurt someone who is damaged in some way, and using it, merely seems cruel to me.  I cannot respect the ability to hurt someone else to raise yourself up.  Reach down and lift someone else up, share a kindness, offer a small smile, even if for a moment. The pain still remains, the sadness and the circumstances don’t easily go away or are completely unavoidable. But that fleeting moment of happiness, when someone enters your circle of enclosure, and offers a minute respite from the pain, is the most meaningful and means more than you can know.  It is an effort to move forward and to create something positive in the depths of sorrow.  It means that we are no longer alone and locked in our brains. Our quiet is shared and leaves a brief peace that we are cared for, we have value, and still try to seek our way out of the pain. There is nothing negative about that.


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