I look with horror at my daughter in the passenger seat and hear my voice come out of her mouth. The day I have feared, the possibility that I have dreaded. It's here now. It's happening now. Full-blown mania. Two syllables, one hyphen. Full. Blown.
Two thoughts here: One is that he will apply the crippling denial that has killed my love for him, kept him from getting well, to the situation I see rambling next to me, sweeping her arms and banging them against the dashboard in her exuberance, her insistence that her theory applies to sociology as well: The relationship between men and women is based on the fundamental power struggle, caused by the opposition of two forces, yin and yang, "See, mom, two again, see where this is going?" The fact that some of her rambling is based on fact doesn't comfort me. That's how it begins, discovering of an underlying truth of nature, extrapolating and relating and connecting, seeing symbolism everywhere, another example and another, the perceived brilliance of the insight fuels its momentum. Here is more evidence that bipolar disorder, or at least the predisposition to it, is genetic. With a rueful half-mile, I observe that she'll get no argument from me on that power struggle. With us, it's been an intractable battle for 25 years.
The second thought cascades from the first, that here is more evidence that my condition, or at least the predisposition to it, is genetic. And here is more grist for the mill of blame that I am responsible for everything that has happened, the destruction of our family is my fault because of my illness and my inability to manage it, despite medication and therapy and dogged determination to get it right. Neatly side-stepping the implication that he has encouraged the disaster through ignorance and indifference, fueled by his refusal to confront his own pathology.
For now PreMed has not evinced the pattern of symptoms that led to my downfall, and now apparently, her sister's. Maybe it's just that she's been able to translate that energy into success and achievement, her brilliant insight into compassion. I'll go spend the day with her and soak up some of her goodness, and bottle it, store it to bring home like the sandalwood lotion. I'm going to need every ounce of the strength she can spare for the battles and logistics of the coming weeks and months as I attempt to corral her sister to get help and to get well, and as I run between the raindrops of her father's blame, shame, guilt and denial.
Namaste, Nutjobs. Namaste, PreMed. Namaste, Troubled.
Namaste, Hallmark. Your stupid holiday is stupid.