Song of the Day: Colorblind by Counting Crows
Well thanks to my latest hypomanic madness my finances are in disarray.
When I’m hypomanic, shopping is the most exciting thing in the world and I care little for the effects on my finances. Going into a department store, book shop, even a supermarket is akin to arriving at Munchkinland in Oz or Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Everything is so colourful, bright, shiny and new, and I am seduced; a rush of adrenaline coursing through me with the thought of being able to have whatever I want. When you’re manic you CAN have whatever you want- well, in your head!
During my first hypomanias I obsessively collected Beanie Babies (small collectible soft toys) and Pocket Dragons (little green dragon collectible ornament-things). Each cute little stuffed animal or dragon seemed to look up at me with big, dark eyes, begging me to take him home. How could I possibly leave him behind?! It was like the thing was alive! All I could think about in that moment was the need to enter that fantastical, childlike world- it would be mine as soon as I handed over the cash. I wanted to drink up all the colour and magic and sparkle, gulping every last drop- I was so thirsty for it. My inner child’s dreams would be fulfilled- populated by stuffed animals, little green dragons, rainbows, waterfalls and fairies- all the ideas I played with in my head as a child would become reality by buying! It’s strange what the manic mind can convince you of unconsciously.
Celebrity Bipolar-sufferer Stephen Fry has spoken about his obsession with gadgets: new cameras, new computers, TVs etc. And if he’s anything like my other half, he has to have the newly released iPhone or iPad or i-bloody-anything on THE DAY it’s released-no later! Maybe these gadgets are Mr Fry’s “toys” from his childhood.
Perhaps manic overspending is the enactment of the inner child’s ultimate fantasy. As children we are always told no: no, we can’t afford it, no, you’ve got too many already, no, it’s a waste of money. Mania allows us to say YES, YES, YES!!!! Yes you can have the purple shoes that don’t go with anything, Yes you can have the grossly overpriced Barbie with the longest, lushest hair and the beautiful sparkly princess dress. Yes you can have the giant ice cream sundae with the marshmallows amd whipped cream. Wow- how amazing it is to be told yes! It is so exciting: nothing beats the high of manic spending.
Most likely when I get home though, I’ll lose interest in the items I’ve bought pretty quickly and new desires begin to appear in my thoughts, emerging in a swirl of mist to the forefront of mind: “the dragons look lovely on my shelf, but they’d look even better with the baby dragons playing with the balloons- I’ll go and buy those tomorrow”. And so the cycle begins again….You are never quite full, with enough desires fulfilled. I must have more “things”. There is an insatiable need for more, more, more.