Canst thou not minister to a mind diseas’d,
Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
Raze out the written troubles of the brain,
And with some sweet oblivious antidote
Cleanse the stuff’d bosom of that perilous stuff
Which weighs upon the heart?
Therein the patient
Must minister to himself.
No pill or doctor can fully “raze out the written troubles of the brain”. Bipolar Disorder is rooted in the brain, but it has emotional, psychological and behavioral implications. It is not a broken leg that can be set, a laceration that can be stitched up. It’s a comprehensive illness, and I have to be part of the solution. Bipolar disorder has cost me a lot, without question. But along the way, life happened, too. I made some poor choices, damaged relationships. I have some resentments, and a lot of lingering hurt and regret. There isn’t a pill for that. In these, my most private struggles, I must minister to myself, stitching up my own internal wounds as I have the clarity and strength to do so. Medication has stabilized my bipolar disorder, but the rest of it, the messy, deep, borrowing rest of it, is my job. And mine alone.