I was speaking to a friend this morning and it occurred to me where this ‘nervousness’ I discussed in ‘Image’ was coming from. It’s the urge to run and hide. To push people away, to nest up in my own little hole, not interact with anyone and just hide.

To a certain extent this past year i’ve been hiding. Slowly but surely becoming less sociable, doing less of my favourite hobbies, speaking to friends less frequently, taking up more internet based activities such as Twitter and WordPress (ironic that the one internet activity which seems to be helping me the most is actually the ultimate in hiding, but… that’s out of necessity) and generally becoming one of my masks. A protection. Pushing real people away. Hiding in the sense that i’ve started to put weight on again. Hiding in my own skin.

And so this change of image, becoming what I was again (perhaps a little older and wiser and more self aware…) scares me, as the option of hiding doesn’t exist now. Flaming red hair isn’t condusive to hiding. I am perverse. Even when part of my stubborn mind is screaming to hide, the other part of me goes and does something like that. Forcing me to get back out there, pushing me to the front of the crowd again. Right out of my newly formed comfort zone. Am I ready for this? Part of me is excited about it. Very excited. There’s nothing more exciting than chatting to new friends, old friends, finding new situations, enjoying familiar situations – isn’t that what excitement is? Controlling that ‘fear’?

Excitement and fear – so close together that the feeling could go either way. But I am also aware that I have been ‘off the rails’ in the past when embracing the new and exciting. So will I be able to control it this time? Will experience and my new knowledge of how to recognise and counter uncontrollable feelings work in the upper spectrum too?

I’ve mentioned it before I think, however with my Depression, I feel strong emotions of joy and happiness too. Whilst these are nothing like what is experienced by Bi-polar sufferers, I’ve noted that this is not discussed anywhere I’ve looked. It seems that being extremely happy and bouncy and ‘up’ is seen as a normal and ‘acceptable’ state of mind, whereas being extremely unhappy and down is not.

I know what i’m doing when I’m happy, and it just seems that I ‘push’ things further than perhaps I should in order to make others happy, almost like I have to go that one step better. Almost like a thrill seeking response. Alcohol intensifies this too – which is why perhaps it’s a good thing i’m having to be dry for a while. It allows me to understand and to recognise what it is that I do when i’m ‘happy’, so when I do re-introduce alcohol into my life I can consume it sensibly and resist the urge to push a thrill-seeking response. It’s a strange concept for me, because although i’ve recognised amd suffered intense lows throughout my life, my intense highs have always been hailed as good things, so I have never learned to hide them as such, but magnify them. And I’ve certainly never striven to control them. But with everything – all must be controlled with equal measure. So on to my next challenge… Now i’m not hiding any more, I must learn to recognise and control my exuberance, and channel this in the same way I channel my Depression.