I Defer, You Defer, He/She/It Defers


I have 'made the decision' to defer my exams because I am suffering, as the letter from my psychiatrist attests, from a manic disorder. I use the inverted commas advisedly, as I could not make a decision, it being the only option to me. While things are better now because of the medication and the lack of stress, it is still damned difficult doing ordinary things. The quotidarian now requires a huge effort and it tires the hell out of me.

I wish I could explain to you what it's like to be manic. I had heard of it before it happened to me, but I really didn't understand it. Maybe it's one of those things that you can't explain and can't understand unless you go through it. I have tried coming up with any number of similes, but to no avail. Perhaps the best I've come up with is a carburettor, where depression is too much fuel in the mix and mania is too much air. That doesn't work massively well, though, and frankly I don't know enough about engines to say how far it goes.

Depression and mania are opposites, but they are not necessarily their antitheses. There is a happy mania, which I didn't realise I was in to begin with, and there is what I have now - scary mania. I cannot think straight. I usually think in trees - look at the SU Codes of Practice to see what I mean, all 11.2.1 and so on - but now whenever I focus on an idea it fractals out of control and I have so much going around in my head I can't focus on and develop an idea.

I have phenomenal amounts of energy and my need for sleep is reduced. Until I started taking the olanzapine, I was sleeping 2-3 hours every other night and wasn't showing the usual effects of lack of sleep. What worries me is that even now, with a fairly hefty dose of a fairly hefty antipsychotic that my psychiartist gave me partially because of its sedative effects, I sleep perhaps five hours where I should be dead to the world for half the day.

Although I have all this energy, I cannot utilise it. I find it difficult to focus on a particular task for more than a few minutes before my mind gets lost in the fog of ideas. It is monumentally frustrating - I have ideas, I have energy and now I have time but I cannot achieve the right combination to be able to do anything with them.



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