The Power Behind my Bipolar: Becoming Friends with Both Sides- Final Parts

This is a continuation of Jeremy’s story of healing which begins here. In the final part of this post Jeremy shares his recipe for healing. I want to state that this is his path and may not apply to everyone.  As it happens, I use all his methods, save fasting. Fasting would be dangerous for me at this time during detox and it’s not always appropriate for people depending on the individual. Please read his healing advice as his experience and not a cure all for everyone.

These posts were originally posted on “Lotus Work,” Jeremy’s blog.

Jeremy continues:

As I stare at the previous posts, I realize that I never described the emotions that used to run my life.  I guess it is important to know where you have come from before you can know where you are going.  I don’t want to focus on the hell I went through, but rather how I discovered heaven on earth.  I was one of the fortunate ones who never thought about ending their lives.  I only thought about how I can improve my situation.

I guess Hell comes in many forms.  Mine was the late nights of no sleep and the constant chatter that my mind would produce.  It was usually chatter about things that I needed to do in the future or my review of the events that happened during the day.  It made me frustrated because all I really wanted to do was sleep.  The next day would come and it would be a nightmare.  I would run through the days like I was in a movie and was waiting for the director to yell, “Cut.”  My lack of sleep played with my emotions.  I was short-tempered around those close to me and drove them crazy.

The other end of the spectrum was the dark cloud that descended upon me.  I spent more days under this dark cloud than I would wish upon anyone.  I would sleep all day and all night.  I didn’t leave my room or what must have been my cave.  This was the place where I dreamed my way out of this feeling.  My imagination was what kept me going and helped to restore me back to the world.

I guess I could tell you more details about my experience, but I would rather have you imagine it or simply ask me.  I am extremely comfortable about talking about it because I feel that I am success story BECAUSE of it.  I owe all my happiness in life with family, career, and self to my barrage of free flowing emotions.  I’d rather share what steps I took to “cure” myself and how I live my life.  You will be amazed because the remedy is not some high tech, new scientific method.  It is actually ancient ways that have been practiced since the dawn of man.

Part 4

So I AM sitting here eating my organic peanut-butter wheat crackers with a side of cold organic rice milk and I am thinking, “How did I end up at this point?”  I can tell you last year I would have been polishing off an ice cream sundae with a tall glass of milk.  I am not knocking ice cream sundaes because I still enjoy them, but something has been altered between then and now.  The great thing is that it is wonderful to me.  So cheers, [organic rice milk raised up in the air], “Here is to the rest of my life and in good health.”

How did I make my Hell work for me?  How is it possible to turn your life from “get up, go to work, go to sleep, repeat” to GET UP, GO TO WORK, GO TO SLEEP, REPEAT.”  It is the how you say it and what happens in between.  To me it was really easy.  No matter what changes you make in your life it has to start with two things, Intention and Attention.  My intent was simple, get healthy and enjoy life to its fullest.  The attention part was were I used my emotions to propel me.

This was how I became friends with my 2 sides.  I had to find out HOW they can HELP me.  I learned that when I am restless and have an abundance of energy that it is not the time to go shopping online or spend countless hours surfing the web with no purpose.  This was a weakness, but also my strength.  I used my abundance of energy to work out (uses up all my energy to help me sleep) and surf the internet for ways to improve my body, mind, and spirit.  I also used it to meet new people and try new things.  The really tricky part that I had to master is to always take a step back while fully engaged.  This served me well because I was able to gain knowledge in the very act.  An example would be when I started working out.  I wanted to do everything, but I took a step back and listened to my body.  It said, “Be gentle and kind to me, and I will work wonders for you.”  I have never been disappointed yet.

During my periods of low energy is a time to reflect and rest.  Instead of staring at the TV and wallowing all day, “Why me?” (I was good at asking that question); I meditated and practiced Reiki on myself.  It is a time for me to go inward and just get all comfortable in my skin.  It is grounding period where I recharge my batteries.  I also relax in bed and read many books on nutrition, healing, and other feel good books that jump out at me on amazon or the library.  I let my imagination run wild sometimes just staring at the clouds forming shapes in the clouds like a little boy.

This went on for a few months and the day came where I was ready to release the medications that have been my crutch for one-third of my life.  I remember thinking well here goes nothing and I heard my body say, “Thank you.”  I felt like a wounded bird who was mended with a cast and finally healed.  The bird knows instinctive how to fly, so it was my turn to fly.  I remember flushing the toilet with the rest of the pills there, saying “Thanks for all the memories.”

My heaven began long before I flushed down the sewer.  It really began when I set my intention and focused my attention towards what I believe.  There were obstacles along the way, but I looked at them as challenges and opportunities to learn and grow.  My mom always said, “What doesn’t kill you , will always make you stronger?”  Boy, is she a smart woman.  I look through the same eyes today and only see rainbows of opportunity instead of never ending dark clouds.  I know I am one with nature because I cycle just like the ocean tides, the waning and waxing moon, and the hibernating bear.  I choose to live in the present moment and not dwell too far in the past.  My future is left for me to decide.  Some days it is wonderful and some days it is crappy, but each time it gets here it will be the only time it does, so I make full use of it.

Final Part:

Some of these may seem radical to many and at one point I agreed with you, but the easy life, takes hard work.  Some of these are ancient ways that have been practiced and mostly forgotten since the dawn of man.  This is no high tech or radical treatment plan.  I know that if you found your own recipe and had the drive, you WILL be successful.

1.) Nutrition– This is by far the biggest one for me.  I was such an emotional eater.  All my emotions came with a special treat.  I had to learn how to tame this beast and feed it in other ways.  I looked to find how I could curb my appetite and I fell in love with green tea, almonds, salads and fruit smoothie shakes.  I really studied a great deal from who I call the 4 doctor dudes: Dr Oz, Dr Andrew Weil, Dr Dean Ornish, and Dr Mark Hyman.  They all said the same thing.  Get rid of the crap and add the good stuff. Prett simple.  I started slowly and didn’t overload my body because it knew it was in for a change.  I never followed a diet or fused about portions.  I ate when I was hungry and stopped when I was full.  The key was LISTENING to my body.

2.) Exercise–  I hit this one pretty hard.  I am not a big gym person and probably will never be, so I diversified.  I do the elliptical machine, lift weights, and pretty much walk each day.  I also mixed in some golf, walking nine holes.  I figured it is a way to be out in nature and I never keep score.  I set easy goals and hit them pretty quickly.  During my times of abundant energy, I really give it my all within reason.  Today, I plan on training for a triathlon with the only goal in mind to finish it.

3.) Reading and writing– Sure this makes sense, but when you read to improve yourself, it gives you the tools to work with.  I found journaling or blogging to help me express my thoughts.  That way I don’t have to think about them.  I review them later.

4.) Meditation– How does one quiet the mind in a world of 24/7 everything?  You have to go within yourself and allow yourself to shut down in a conscious state.  I worked my way up to 1.5-2 hours meditating at night before bed.  I started with guided meditation and then just 20 minutes each night.  The most important part is consistency.  Who doesn’t have 5 minutes a day to sit quietly and thinking about nothing?  Your mind will thank you.

5.) Imagination– During those times that suck, I imagine my way out of it.  I am certainly not perfect and have not made the best choices, but my imagination will help me make the next right move.

6.) Yoga and Tai Chi (see an earlier post here)- Yoga is such a good way to stretch and relax the body.  I was out of my league when I first started, but our teacher was great.  She was so calming and made it fun.  I love getting into the child’s pose because I can feel myself stretch all my tension out.  I was also curious about Tai Chi.  It is a gentle movement exercise and meditation.  I actually practice it sitting in my chair and on the elevator.

7.) Nature– This is something many avoid without even knowing it.  How many times have you gone to work, drove home, and completed all your evening tasks without even consciously looking at the one of the many squirrels, birds, trees, and other wonderful living things around you.  I mean really look at them.  You will surely find peace when you do.

8.) Meeting new people–  I was forced into this because I am not originally from the area I live at and I am a social creature by nature.  I love my family, but I tend to drive them crazy when I can’t explore the world.  I went to a few meetup groups for things I was interested in.  We are only trapped in our own worlds if we don’t meet new people.  I met and experienced some wonderful things from many people.  I may have even brought some positive change to them as well.  Win, Win.

9.) Reiki and other energy healing–  This may be unheard of to many.  I can tell you that much of the medical community is waking up to this simple truth.  There are more nurses and doctors being attuned to Reiki and learning the ways Shamanic healing.  We all have a power within us that can assist in our own healing.  I usually practice Reiki on myself each night after I meditate.  Shamans have been working with energy healing (we are all made of energy) for over 30,000 years.  I thought, “Let me add this to one of my tools for health.”  I am now a Reiki Master/Teacher and learning about the Shmanic ways.  It is some pretty cool stuff.

10.) Fasting– You are probably thinking that I am religious or starving myself.  Neither is true.  I became fascianated with nutrition and learned all about it.  It was then it clicked.  We use a majority of our energy digesting and processing food.  I thought if I could give it a rest for a week, that I may be able to get rid of toxins and heal some parts of my organs.  This is not for the weak minded or the faint of heart.  I suggest to really study this before partaking.  I recently completed a 7 day fast on mostly water and some maple syrup lemon mixed with cayenne pepper. (see the “The Master Cleanse”)  The hardest part is not the fast, but coming off of it, so be gentle and use your will power.  It was truly a spiritual and powerful experience.  It felt good to “reboot” my computer.

11.) Challenge myself–  How do you get in touch with loving yourself?  You have to want to.  That is a challenge in itself because our world tells us that happiness is in external things.  Just look at any commercial and you will know what I mean.  I constantly give challenges to myself.  Sometimes I don’t meet them and some times I blow myself away.  The end result is the same- I want to get to know myself and learn about me.

These are just a few of the many things I did to become friends with myself and to become an “ex-bipolar”.  I plan to write more and share what I experience for you.  I really encourage dialogue amongst your families and friends and even with me.  I really enjoy discussing health and well being.  I have even decided to go back to school for massage therapy starting at the end of this month.  I leave you all with a challenge, “Change one thing in your life and tell me all about it.”

subpersonalities

About Monica Cassani

Author/Editor Beyond Meds: Everything Matters