An October Conversation with Bipolar Disorder…


Bipolar Disorder: Trick Or Treat!

Iris: Halloween isn’t until the end of the month. You’re a few weeks early.

Bipolar Disorder: But I want candy!

Iris: It’s not time for handing out candy yet. And, you’re a mood disorder; not a costumed child.

Bipolar Disorder: GIVE me some candy!

Iris: I don’t think we’re really understanding each other very well.

Bipolar Disorder: You think I’m misunderstanding you?

Iris: It does appear that way. Since you keep asking for candy.

Bipolar Disorder: Yeah, well I’m bored!

Iris: And you want this to be my problem, why?

Bipolar Disorder: I’m bored with all the self-care you do. I’m bored with your stability. Mood stability is BORING!!

Iris: I rather like my mood being stable.

Bipolar Disorder: Yeah, and you’re boring. I want to liven things up a little this month!

Iris: Yes, I know you have been trying to do that, haven’t you?

Bipolar Disorder: Wasn’t it fun the other week? Getting only a little bit of sleep that one night, and then waking up with that new short story ready to write?

Iris: Well, yes. That was fairly pleasant.

Bipolar Disorder: And you did a great job catching the whole thing before it faded from your dream.

Iris: Er, thanks.

Bipolar Disorder: You don’t seem very convinced you should be thanking me.

Iris: I don’t believe you have my best interest at heart. No offense.

Bipolar Disorder: Sure I do! Expansive thoughts! Flights of ideas! I can give you all that! If you just give me some more candy!

Iris: More candy? I don’t eat candy.

Bipolar Disorder: That coconut drink you had yesterday was just the stuff. I want more of that!

Iris: I didn’t sleep well last night after drinking that sugary thing.

Bipolar Disorder: Yeah, isn’t it great?!

Iris: No. I would like to return to my usual good sleep hygiene, thank you very much.

Bipolar Disorder: You’re not very cooperative.

Iris: I don’t see that it would benefit me much to be very cooperative with you.

Bipolar Disorder: But what about that short story? Don’t I deserve some thanks for that?

Iris: You can’t take all the credit for my short story.

Bipolar Disorder: But, you don’t dream like that when you’re properly medicated. You said that yourself.

Iris: That’s right. I don’t.

Bipolar Disorder: Don’t you feel more creative and more productive when you’re a little bit Hypomanic? Or even a little bit depressed? I’m great at giving you ideas for gloomy poetry, aren’t I?

Iris: I do feel more creative and productive at those times, yes. But, what you’re offering isn’t all good. You know that.

Bipolar Disorder: Well, yeah. Of course it’s not. Why else would they  call it *trick* or treat? I gave you a treat. I gave you that short story. Now it’s time for my trick.

Iris: I’m not interested in your trick.

Bipolar Disorder: Ugh! Do you know how boring it is? Being in your brain when you take such good care of yourself that I hardly ever get to have any fun?

Iris: That sounds like your problem, not mine. I’m much happier when I’m not having to manage your symptoms very often.

Bipolar Disorder: I want candy! I want candy this month! This month is Halloween!

Iris: You’re behaving like a spoiled toddler. Your temper tantrum isn’t going to change my mind.

Bipolar Disorder: This is the month for candy! If I don’t get some candy, some fun, in your brain this month I’ll… Well, I’ll…. I’ll pout! That’s what I’ll do.

Iris: See? What did I say? Just like a spoiled toddler.

Bipolar Disorder: So, you’re going to deny me any more sugar? And you’re going to deny me more nights of broken sleep too?

Iris: Yes. You get to come along with me this month. I don’t have any choice in that. But you are not in charge of me. I am the one making decisions here. Not you. Understood?

Bipolar Disorder: Fine. Have it your way. Be boring!

Iris: Good. But, I’m not bored, by the way.

Bipolar Disorder: What do you mean?

Iris: I’ve been transcribing out conversation.  Every word. I’m saving it, and I’m sure it will become very useful for me as a reminder.

Bipolar Disorder: What reminder? For what?

Iris: For when you try this again next month. Though I’m sure you’ll be demanding Thanksgiving candy next time. Thanks for your input!

Bipolar Disorder: What?! No way! You tricked ME!

Iris: Happy Halloween!


Thinking of Cheese

When I first began using a wedge pillow to treat my chronic Acid Reflux it occurred to me that the other place I most often found that same wedge shape of my new wedge pillow was in cheese!

So, to add some fun to my new sleep regimen with the wedge pillow I removed the white pillow case that came on the pillow and I dyed it a nice cheesy yellow-orange color. I liked how it turned out so well that I found some small chair pillows to display alongside my cheesy wedge pillow as crackers.

It didn’t take very much work at all to create my cheese wedge and crackers pillow display, and after I created it I felt a lot better about having to sleep at night using a wedge pillow. I really love that I am among the humans who have this gift of being able to make dull and ordinary experiences more fun through creativity.

Creativity definitely helps me more easily endure the times in my life when my physical health limitations, or my symptoms of mental illnesses make living my life more challenging for me than I would really prefer.

I hope each of you who reads this post is able to smile a little more easily today while you’ve joined me in thinking of cheese.



© 2017 Iris Baldwin All Rights Reserved.

The Spice of Life!


Dear Iris,

 I think you may have misunderstood my job in your life. I know you are a primarily a writer, but I am a Muse! I am your Muse. Like you, I have lots of interests, so I have lots of areas of creativity in which I can inspire you. Please don’t be so quick to disregard the ideas I send to you.

I know, you are primarily a writer. You keep telling me. That doesn’t mean it would do you any harm to try out these other creative arts areas that I send your way. Nobody ever found physical pain or emotional torment from spending time doing arts and crafts. Yes, arts and crafts. You usually write stories, but I assure you if you’ll only do what I recommend the stories you write will be richer for it.

You resist me, but believe me when I recommend spending time dancing, singing, creating needle work crafts, painting, drawing, or playing piano, that all of those activities are creative in nature, and they will enhance your writing. I know they’re not words on a page, but they are creative. You may not take to all of these other areas of creativity as naturally as you take to crafting stories, but you get to experience variety in your days.

Variety is good for you. You get to work different areas of your brain every time you do something creative that’s different than your strong suit. Besides, when you learn new skills won’t at least one of those characters in your stories learn new skills too? Surely you want your characters to have full lives. After all, you can’t write stories populated with nothing but writers. How dull would those stories be? The more other kinds of skills and experiences you have yourself the better off you’ll be as a writer.

I know you find cooking to be a chore. But, you must eat! And, if you would take the time to explore the culinary arts a bit more I think you’ll find that you will be able to enjoy some creativity in that enterprise as well. And when you’re creative in the kitchen you can eat your finished product.

You can do just about anything creatively, so if you’ll just hang in there with me and follow my instructions I think you’ll find that you will get to have a lot of fun doing many different activities that are all creative.

Remember: Variety!





© 2017 Iris Baldwin All Rights Reserved.