I am NOT Bipolar anymore.
You won’t hear me say those words, and I won’t let Webster or Oxford define me otherwise.
It wasn’t always this way. I used to accept that title willingly. It’s even how I described myself.
But then one day I asked myself a simple question: “Why am I Bipolar?”
How am I an innate medical condition?
Why do all of my accomplishments have to be put in the context of a chemical imbalance?
When was it decided that the world gets to view me through the lens of something I didn’t choose?
Society’s put people into boxes to make life easier for it, not us. It’s a simple way to know who to pity…who to patronize… who to praise…and politicize.
And yet we want to be accepted so much, we beg to be caged.
“Please,” we say, “give me something to be a part of!” It’s quite comforting to be in a group… at least till the one day we start to realize how blissful we are in complacency.
Boxes DON’T empower you. I doesn’t feel great saying “I’ve done a lot…for a bipolar person…a bisexual…a latino.” It doesn’t inspire me to reach for greatness when I find greatness to be anything more than what society allows in the box it put me in.
Define yourself by something and others will too…and they might not be so generous. You take that box, and you get the chains too.
I’m not saying to be ashamed of your conditions. See it gladly as part of you…but repeat that phrase. PART of you.
I have bipolar disorder, and I will likely for the rest of my life…but that’s not what I see when I look in the mirror.
I see a boyfriend…someone who does good for his family. I see a statesman and a college student. An activist and a lover of the arts.
Most of all, I see a human being with dignity and respect…just as I see the many others on this spinning rock.