My roommate just told me about a "Mad Pride" movement. It’s sort of like Gay Pride, apparently, except it’s for those with “differently balanced” chemicals. I’ve never heard of any medical conditions that have associated pride movements.
Asthma Pride- the members get together to take beta blockers and smoke in an enclosed area, gasping that they deserve acceptance too, that they shouldn’t have to hide behind inhalers.
I guess Asthma Pride lacks a certain glamour, nobody proudly says, “Van Gogh had asthma,” while puffing away at an inhaler. Nobody attributes any great literary works of genius to hyperactive airways. And nobody claims that asthma attacks are accompanied by bursts of creativity.
I’m bipolar. I’ve had the bursts of creativity, the midnight tattoo runs, I paint, I write, I have great stories… But then there’s the bank account, overdrawn by 2000 dollars, there’s the fact that I now have what I refer to as the “Take-Your-Medication-For-The-Love-Of-God” tattoo, there’s the trail of worried friends and relatives, the hospital stays, the medication…
It’s sort of like when they show these beautiful snowy scenes in movies and on television shows. They don’t necessarily show the day after, when the snow has turned gray and slushy, when your shoes aren’t quite warm enough or waterproof enough to keep your toes safe, leaving you with little white prunes at the end of the day, and when you can’t even shop for groceries because the cars that are turning the snow gray and black are all stuck and blocking traffic, wheels desperately screeching and spinning. But it seems so romantic the day before, little white flecks gently floating out of the sky, children sledding, snowmen… There’s a day after with mental illness too.
I’m not proud of being mad. I accept it, I medicate it, and I manage it so that I can graduate from medical school and become a doctor, hopefully without accruing any more debt, tattoos, or bizarre collections of items that seem like a good idea to purchase at 2 in the morning.
2 months ago