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  • Writer's pictureNima

"Bipolar in a cocktail" A journey through Bipolar Disorder-Part 5

Some folks are perfectly okay on their own, living and thriving, but not everyone. Some, like me, need someone by their side. I was yearning for that deep, meaningful connection. But after nearly ten years of mental challenges and hurdles, my life finally took a turn, and I found myself getting hitched for the second time. Without my second wife's solid support, her genuine and steadfast spirit, and her unwavering strength in navigating the complexities of life with bipolar Disorder, I doubt I'd ever have overcome the haunts of my past.

After returning from Vienna, everything seemed to sync up. I felt this profound connection with everything around me, thinking I had some kind of superpower. I was floating from one day to the next, getting ready for my exhibition, relying on my grandfather for support. But over time, these grand illusions took over, and I found myself wandering aimlessly on the streets of Tehran.

I began to see events unfold as if I had orchestrated them, picturing myself as some divine entity, linking names in my family to holy figures and perceiving folks as saints. My reputation was tanking, and my behavior? Unpredictable at best. There was this one time I impulsively headed to a house outside Tehran, stripped down, and just lay on the floor in a room where others were asleep. The only thing saving me from total misunderstanding was a bag full of cash by my side, a gift from my trusting grandfather. I blew through it without a second thought, making whimsical purchases like 50 red glasses for folks to peer through at my black and white prints. To this day, I reckon that was a quirky idea.

The highs I was feeling were surreal, and amid this whirlwind, I tried to resurrect a past relationship. My behavior unnerved my ex and her family, but in my head, I was on some grand quest to set things right. It was her and her mother who eventually intervened, liaising with my grandfather to get me help. Seeing him at the hospital, I thought my journey was over, that I had to sacrifice my mission. Lying on that bed, everything faded away as a sharp sting lulled me into darkness.

When I opened my eyes the next day, I found my hands bound to the bed with fabric ribbons. At first, I struggled, but no nurse was in sight. Eventually, I realized the knot was simple and managed to free myself. When the nurse returned and saw I'd undone the ties, she chose not to restrain me again and removed the ribbons. Lying there, I was surprisingly calm given the emotional chaos I'd endured, but there was a peculiar dizziness clouding my thoughts. Upon inquiry, the nurse informed me I had undergone an ECT session, or Electroconvulsive therapy, earlier that day.

The details of my admission were blurry, just a few fragmented memories that linger even now. My stay in that hospital stretched to about two months, during which I had ECT sessions four times a week. Amidst this turmoil, my father, grappling with guilt and the possibility that I needed his support, suddenly re-entered my life. Through one of his contacts, I got a brief reprieve from the hospital and attended my exhibition, where my friends had gathered in my absence.

After my release, I recuperated at my mother's place, under the care of my family. But the cocktail of pills and multiple ECT sessions left me feeling detached and lifeless. Days blurred as I spent most of my time seated on my bed, smoking and letting time slip by. I missed the autumn semester, halting my studies. Trying to instill a sense of purpose in me, my father encouraged me to return to Cyprus to pick up where I left off with my education. Given my heavily medicated state and dwindling hope, I acquiesced. But that stint in Cyprus was short-lived, and before completing a semester, I found myself back in Tehran, shunning my medication once more. The relapse was even more intense.

To be continued...

cigaret and ashtray

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