Monday, October 11, 2010


Every once in a while I get a feeling. For a while, I wasn't sure exactly what it was or where it came from, but a few years ago I took a psychology class and learned a bit about mental disorders. One particular article (the wikipedia page on bipolar disorder) intrigued me when I first came across it:

"Mania is generally characterized by a distinct period of an elevated, expansive, or irritable mood state. People commonly experience an increase in energy and a decreased need for sleep. A person's speech may be pressured, with thoughts experienced as racing. Attention span is low, and a person in a manic state may be easily distracted. Judgment may become impaired, and sufferers may go on spending sprees or engage in behavior that is quite abnormal for them. They may indulge in substance abuse, particularly alcohol or other depressants, cocaine or other stimulants, or sleeping pills. Their behavior may become aggressive, intolerant, or intrusive. People may feel out of control or unstoppable. People may feel they have been "chosen" and are "on a special mission" or have other grandiose or delusional ideas. Sexual drive may increase. At more extreme phases of bipolar I, a person in a manic state can begin to experience psychosis, or a break with reality, where thinking is affected along with mood. Many people in a manic state experience severe anxiety and are very irritable (to the point of rage), while others are euphoric and grandiose."

A lot of the symptoms seemed to match what the feeling was like. I assumed I had bipolar disorder, and this was simply an effect of it. After some time though, I figured that I was being ridiculous and that not every quirk is because of a mental disorder. After all, self-psyche evaluations aren't very reliable and not every symptom matched.

Basically, the experience is an amalgam of different ideas, which I'll try to explain, such as:

As self-centered as it sounds, I did (and sometimes do) feel that I am "chosen" for something; sort of like life is a story and I am the protagonist. I used to lie awake at night and convince myself that some day someone was going to take me to some wild place and I would have a great adventure.

Almost all of these symptoms have decreased in frequency as a got older, but some of them still happen. Sometimes I feel that I MUST carry out ridiculous ideas. For example, when I was younger, I went for a walk one night, and as I was returning to my house I suddenly had the idea that if I didn't walk past my house and continue down to the end of the road, I was going to miss something very important. So I did. Nothing important ever did happen on these little journeys, but I still felt compelled to do things like that time and again.