The Hypomanic Toll Booth


I’ve been in a hypomanic episode since since I wrote A Mixed Bag on September 26. You can count. It’s been about 12 days. My record is 14.

It started out pretty dysphoric and it was thought that I was going through an ultra-rapid cycle. That’s unusual for me. My hypomanic episodes are usually awesome. I hate to say that, and I’m not encouraging anyone to indulge any kind of mania.

Normally, I have these incredibly euphoric and productive hypomanic episodes. I am overloaded with confidence and ambition. I feel like I can take on the world, and I often do. I have overly high self-esteem where I boast and brag incessantly. I’m hypersexual and that’s always met with great enthusiasm. I do indulge that hypomania by getting everything I can out of it.

Because I know that I will inevitably have a terrible crash into depression. That’s why I call it a pendulum. The further the pendulum swings into mania, the further I can expect it to swing back into depression.

I’m not a very active person by nature. One of the main reasons why hypomanic episodes are limited to 5 to 10 days is because my body simply can’t take it. Hypomania forces my body to be as active as my mind. Therefore, I either experience a mental crash that pulls my body with it vice versa.

Thursday morning, 4:56AM, I was awoken. I had a sense that I had been in a near waking state for awhile. By whole body ached, even in places it doesn’t usually ache. I had the worst pain in my head. I wasn’t even tired when I got up, although I had only slept three hours by then. I took two ibuprofin and a half a milligram of xanax with the hope that I’d be asleep again soon. At 7:03AM, I was back in bed.

I’ve been in agonizing pain all throughout my body when the ibuprofin wears off since.

Am I sick? It feels like the flu with no fever. No fever, no illness. Is it because of the Beni Koji I took on Thursday night? I’m not sure, because I figured my body should have processed it by now. But, I have another idea.

I think my body is finally giving out under the hypomania. Too little sleep, too much activity. But my mind is still pushing on, although there are moments where I am absolutely incapacitated with pain. I’m still ablaze with hypomania!

Why and how is this happening? How long can I expect to be hypomanic? Really, I’ve never exceeded 14 days. Will this pain go away? Should I see a doctor? Is the pain related?

Any ideas? I could use as many POV’s as I can get.

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6 thoughts on “The Hypomanic Toll Booth

  1. I’ve often crumbled from the physical stress of hypomanias. If they stay on for any longer than a week or two, the pure energy that comes along with it is exhausting. And then there’s the need to keep going. It’s psychologically distressing to need to keep moving and being physically unable to.

    I’ve also had pain with mine, where my muscles are so stressed from twitching all the time and my joints ache from being in constant motion all the time. My muscles simply couldn’t keep going and they were physically spent. The same might be happening with you. I don’t even notice it some times, it’s just persistent tremors associated with the energy. If you’re taking a lot of pain killers, try switching them up and taking aleve instead of ibuprofen, it’s easier on the stomach. And over time, if you’re taking ibuprofen too long you’ll experience stomach pain and nausea like nothing else.

    • I’m more worried about my liver than anything else. Between headaches and knee aches (long story), I’m a pro at ibuprofin. Does alieve work? I can’t really ever remember taking it.

      That’s what it has to be. I tried to force myself to sit down and rest, you know, just watch a movie. I ended up crocheting anyway. I guess my mind didn’t consider that activity.

      I’m back to the bad kind of mania. Have you ever been so angry that you wanted to cry? I don’t understand mania very well because it’s a rare occurrance. Like one or two short episodes a year.

      Any advice?

      • Hey, Lulu. Just like you & James, my mania come with a lot of physical pain. It’s as if any physical sensation (someone else’s touch, sometimes even wearing clothing) just feels like I’ve been zapped with a tazer. Painkillers only do so much…most of the time the pain just has to wane with the hypomania. The only thing that soothes me when the physical sensations get to be too much and I want to cry and beat my fists on the wall is a hot bath. The bathroom is a solitary place so there’s no one around for me to spit fire at, and the warm water is about the only sensation I can tolerate. If you’ve found something that works, let me know. Hopefully you’re coming out of the current now.

  2. Pingback: From Hypomanic to Panic « As the Pendulum Swings

  3. Pingback: I Bet Jekyll Felt This Way « As the Pendulum Swings

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