Dealing with Your Buried Stuff - Bipolar Question of the Week

John McManamy Health Guide
  • How deep is your buried stuff? In my case, stick a shovel in ground and it’s not just dirt that turns up. I have two family members in town. The evening was winding down, I made tea. We had already spent hours rehashing our childhoods. I like to joke that I raised myself and did a lousy job.

    The three of us are very different, but we all faced similar challenges growing up under the same roof. For me, way back, too much stuff was coming at me, with no ability to handle it. I sought comfort in my own interior world, a very rich world that would give rise to the person I am now. But a lot of dark stuff was also going on in my head. Really dark stuff, violent thoughts. Stuff you bury and try to leave unsaid.

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    Then, eventually, the need arises to say it. Earlier this year, I started saying it.

    So here I was. They knew the story, my dark stuff, my violent thinking. But they didn’t know the whole story, and until last night neither did I. I shifted in my chair, eyes down, twirling my mug of Bengal spice tea. I looked up.

    My violent thoughts, I opened, they were mostly directed at me. Most of the time, I wanted to kill myself.

    I was ten years old, eleven, twelve ...

    Until the words popped out, I was actually not aware of this. Stuff stays buried for a reason. And then, for some reason ...

    The stuff came out. I was safe. It was no big deal, but at the same time a big deal. There’s more stuff beneath the surface, more places to stick my shovel. Maybe the stuff will stay there. Maybe not. Time will tell.

    This morning, I made my family breakfast. Scrambled eggs topped with cheddar and avocado. Diced tomatoes on the side. Bacon. Waffles with real maple syrup. Freshly-ground coffee, juice. Tosca was blaring out of the speakers.

    It’s going to be a great day.

    This week’s question gets personal: Sometimes our buried stuff gets unburied. How do you deal with it?

    Comments below ...

Published On: August 13, 2011