Being Bipolar isn't EASY

and the Art of Slowing it Down

Tag Archives: Movies

Life is a dance


After reading this post, you may add “snob” to my growing list of nicknames – it wouldn’t be the first time. In college I wouldn’t eat a bagel outside of NYC – forget the frozen ones… & when I lived in PHX, second retirement capitol in the USA to LV, I imported my coffee from Portland on a small Architectural salary while my ex boyfriend, Scum Lazy-Ass Moron, covered my rent!?

So you can only imagine that the story now continues. Sadly I have to accept that in some ways I have changed very little. After all that I have seen in my short forty-one (41) years, I have a really hard time saying that developing countries are “beautiful”! It’s somewhat technical and most certainly reflective of my quest for the perfect words in life but in my narrow world view, I think there should be another word for them… Ever since my first trip to India, in 2009, I have been searching for a new term!

I’d like to say that the people and the experiences they afford are beautiful; and IMO they have been and continue to be – unforgettably so, but I am beginning to wonder if I only appreciate them because I grew up in America, in an arguably privileged household.

It’s not just mainstream Design/Architecture that is missing in third world countries but on average much of the landscapes are barren and dry, the infrastructure is sometimes poorly designed but most often tattered & many of the people, it fascinates me to note through their endless smiles, look tired and their street clothes are often dingy – forever spoiled by the inordinate amount of hand washing.

If that last paragraph makes you feel disdain for me, please consider forgiving me, I am only now finally beginning to understand that I am one of those “Sploit American’s” that so much of the world snickers about.

Short of taking away from that acknowledgment; I’d like to come full circle and back to what place this post has in a bipolar blog…

As I lay in bed and reflect on the theme of my accepted Screenplay and autobiography let me remember what Arianna Hufgington said: ‘Life is a Dance Between Making It Happen & Letting It Happen’… Although I have just begun to tap into my hero’s message, my understanding is that it has something to do with answering the questions: “What is really important?”

Many of you might think that I should have arrived at the answer by now but I am still on this road hoping to learn to pass with less judgement and deeply accept that although we share so many commonalities, our countries, our families, our afflictions are so very different! And short of rejecting myself and diving off the deep end into a pity party, that’s what I think that we all need to embrace. Like them or not, our differences make the world go around!

And with the recognition of that at 3am, I am going to close my eyes and pray. I am going thank our dearest Universe for my teachers – my lessons then & my lessons now. I want to thank the Creator of all things for the extraordinary gift of travel, I feel light years ahead of where I could have been if I were held captive in my homeland. I want to ask that the Spirit Guides and Deities help me to keep it real & to share the finer things that are within my control; appreciation, compassion and love for one another – may it come to me freely and easily. But most importantly I need to remember to thank God for bringing me here to the tip of this iceberg; hopefully I’ll figure out what life is all about, act accordingly & grow deeply and profoundly beyond my wildest dreams!

Note to reader: The picture above was taken on my first elephant trek! Imagine your own possibilities as you realise that little girl from Akron Ohio road an elephant in Thailand!

An Interview with ME


This is a picture of ME! Can you believe it? After all these years, I am posting a real picture of me, HERE? Caroline Myss’s snap shot, that I posted earlier today (OH wait! That was yesterday…) encouraged me to do it! So, IF you see me on the street, feel free to stop me in my tracks (I like to make tracks) and say hello? I’d love to know what you think about my blog! That said, you still might have to call ME, Princess Marksalot as I am not considering to reveal my real name to the general public until I finish my Screenplay… am thinking that that will be my real debut! Am still tossing some names around for it but it might be called “Being Bipolar isn’t EASY” or bBiE for short… That said, I do intend to share more of my crazy stories one day, they will certainly be in the movie, but as of late it’s been all these posts have been FEEL GOOD… so read on? Get to know ME more intimately?

Who are you? I’m Princess Marksalot; a.k.a. my childhood hero: Pippi! Or you could “Call ME Cliff”, that’s a private joke but I’d probably respond!

Date of Birth? Oh that’s a touchy subject, I’ll give you the year BUT people in my immediate family are super paranoid about identity theft… so suffice it to say, I like to keep them happy & will share, 1973! …I am an OX according to the Chinese Zodiac and a Virgo in the West.

Where do you come from? All over! I was born in Akron then I moved to Germanton (Memphis) at the age of three. I think after that I went to Dallas, then on to Phoenix and New Canaan. My dad was climbing a corporate ladder… which fell out from under him when I started college. During my stint in New Canaan, I was an exchange student in Lisboa… but I digress, I went to college in Cincinnati, DAAP was a great school – don’t know how it ranks today, but when I went t was in the top five (5) for Architecture Schools! During my stint in Ohio again, I was an exchange student in Kobenhaven. (The most beautiful women in the world live in Kobenhaven… note to self, I do not live there!) oh & also New York – how could I forget New York?! I spent most if not all of my co-ops in NYC… After graduating, I moved to New York close to my best friend and my older sister. I fell in love, hard, and followed Scum Lazy-ass Moron, as we will forever refer to him, back to Phoenix. When that fell apart I moved to DC, where I proceeded to loose my mind?! But I loved every second of it! Then to save myself from drowning in my own thunderstorm, I moved to Las Vegas, met my night in shining armor, had a child & begun a life as an expat in Macao (China).

What do you live for? My family. My interests are Architecture, Graphic Design, Photography, cooking, party planning (I love planning a good party), Yoga, traveling & of course writing but I live for my family. One day I hope to live for something greater, …am currently learning how to be a Bipolar & Yoga advocate but my family keeps me going! I am a pretty good wife, mom, daughter & sister if you ask ME, but I am biased of course…

What project ‘s’ are you working on? Well, I have this blog that I get around to in my spare time, which is usually when insomnia strikes, and I have three (3) Facebook pages one for the blog, one for yoga and my own of course (I really love connection). I teach Yoga out of my home, I just became a teacher this year, and dream of opening a Studio one day! Then there’s my 7th Wedding Anniversary party and a Wellness Day in Macao & my Hindi lessons… but, the coolest project by far, outside my son – can I call my son a “project”? lol – is my Screenplay! That I am really proud of! It’s an autobiography & starts with ME getting handcuffed during my first psychotic break in front of Starbucks on Connecticut Avenue in Dupont circle. I am not sure how it ends – it’s about reclaiming my divine birthright; peace, joy, freedom and laughter! I started on this path with a cleanse at the Yoga Barn in Ubud, Bali in February of 2014 and I aim to finish it!

What are your ambitions for your projects? …Ugh – I’d like to make a blockbuster! Did I just admit that? Is that a “flag”, I am Bipolar ya know… All joking aside, who wouldn’t? And in the process, I’d like to make my little sister famous! She has all the skills, as she is an actress AND looks like ME?! Do forgive me for just addressing one project here BUT that’s a pretty enormous ambition! No? My Screenplay, it’s also an insiders guide to how one woman’s hyper alert, idiosyncratic and acutely sensitive manic-depressive mind works! I hope to make what it’s like to be mentally unstable available to more people. To suppress the stigma’s – make mental illness less taboo!

Do you have any political views? All is fair in love & Yoga! And by that I mean, there are different strokes for different folks! I am finding that I mainly vote/ lean one direction but try to see everyone’s point of view and do not side with a political party. Several of my friends & relatives are political die hards and I try to reason with them. But many of you know that that’s pointless! So what do I believe? I believe that all women should have the right to abortion but hope to never have to make that decision myself! I believe that all people should have the right to bear arms but don’t want a gun in the house. God forbid, when I get depressed, I just might use it on myself?! I believe that Education is really important and wish that it was FREE in the USA but that would wreck havoc on our taxes! I am glad to see that Health Insurance is reaching more people now! #GoObamaCare I don’t know if I believe in the death penalty, I think torture is better suited for some! …I support same sex marriage, like I said “All is fair in love & Yoga” – it doesn’t matter to me if some people are born that way or choose that direction later in life! Think that about sums it up… I am really not abreast of what the main issues are! But those are a few that I can think of that are important to ME!

What are your religious views? I have written about them in this blog, but I’ll share what I recently posted about my altar on my Yoga Facebook page here. I think it pretty much sums it up: “I have come to believe that I am a Universalist and believe that our universe, in all it’s glory, is an eternal organism and from it proceeds all life, all consciousness, all creativity… in other words, I believe: ALL is God. On my altar I have a photo of Jesus and a pendant of his mother Mary. (I was raised Catholic, though left the Church shortly after I started yoga in College). You will also find Ganesha, Krishna, Saraswati and of course Buddha up there too. (My husband is Hindu. A Hindu priest married us and another gave my son his name.) I own, but have not read in their entirety, the Holy Bible, a Bhagavad Gita, the Teachings of Buddha & most recently acquired a Qur’an… a close friend and Missionary tells me that I am a Pantheist but I’ll leave that up to you to judge… I promise not to bore you with my spiritual beliefs, in class, but you should trust that they are part of my yogic journey; finding your center is part of yours! Note: that this is intentionally a “Community Page” and I am open to such discussions about God, the Spirit, the Creator of all things, as you like. One thing that I have learned from Yoga since the Summer of 1998 is that WE ARE ONE and in my classes, I will work towards reinforcing that message! Chopra is a huge role model of mine and he often reminds me that we share and are responsible for only ONE World… so kindly keep in mind, as you come to class, that we are in this together!” …imagine that you get the picture!

What do you hope to fulfill in life? I hope to support my husband’s happiness and help make a respectable ‘citizen of the world’ out of my son! …I hope to follow the instructions that my Grandpa Bud gave me and do a job, any job, well! …he really haunts me sometimes, God rest his soul, often I put in the extra effort! You know, tie a pretty ribbon on the package. I could learn more from my Mom; she ties the best ribbons! Trust, I know, this list is not that “lofty” but they are the first things that come to mind!

Do you have any hobbies? Kindly see “What do you live for?” AND “What project ‘s’ are you working on?” above. ;) …the head of Human Resources at my first real job, in Rockefeller Center, told me that smart people usually answer questions before they are asked! Guess this proves that I am SMART? …I have been trying to prove that my whole life! Now my life is complete! …I might not know where Madagascar is nor who fought in the French Revolutionary War ;) but I do know some things!

In your spare time what artists do you listen to? A lot of 5 Seconds of Summer, Green Day & Pink lately! My four (4) year old son loves them… but when I get to choose it’s Pink Martini and Florence + the Machine… REM, Blondie, David Bowie, Eurythmics, Neil Diamond, George Michael & the Eagles when I am feeling nostalgic.

Any closing statements? Please note that I stole these questions from Vonj, out right! There is no shame in stealing! Everyone needs inspiration sometimes… that said, you can find his original post here! I may have just stumbled upon him but I <3 what I’ve seen…

Enter Feedback

offer it up

So I am no longer writing a Play. I am writing a Film, a Movie… a Screen Play. Trouble is I have never read a “Screen Play”. (Insert grave doubt.)

In the short span of twelve (12) pages I learned that painting the picture is more important to ME. My resident expert, my younger sister and actress, pointed that out and has helped me understand that Plays are driven through language and dialogue… Movies through images.

I am a visual person; I need images. I speak in images. And frankly, if it’s going to be an autobiography and therefore about being Bipolar, there was little dialogue, outside that with my therapist, about my neurosis’, my psychosis’… for years mind you I hid my conspiracy theories, delusional thoughts and paranoia to the best of my ability!

… I thought that I would write it backwards; from my current, some would argue, ‘perfect’ and stable life to the unforeseen calamities, sudden and serendipitous distress, that they Universe dropped on my doorstep ten (10) years ago this month. But then I woke in a fright a few days ago thinking “backwards is all wrong” and realized: “I need more feedback”! So I sent my logline & synopsis to my nearest and dearest soliciting their criticism.

My Mom, of all people, said “Well written kiddo” full stop.

That’s it?! I mean that’s all my MOM is going to share about these dedicated steps/adventure that I have begun to better understand myself? That’s’ it? I mean C’mon, really??

In the most unapologetic way possible, I have to say that she’s the deluded one! She is most certainly unaware of how cathartic telling one’s story is… my hope is the the act of writing my story, possibly producing it, will change ME, deeply… perhaps proFOUNDly?! Maybe, just maybe, this time I will find myself?

After some prodding and in reference to the title and synopsis of my, now, Screen Play she said: “I think that the title is a work in progress. You will need to work through whether or not people will “get it”. It may be perfect in the end-you don’t have to keep it if something better presents itself.”

And she’s right. I have only just begun. I need to bring my yoga practice into my writing and work at being flexible.

Before it turned into a movie, my older sister said: “That seems like a great starting perspective to begin to write. I just wonder whether by not simply writing but rather creating these artificial constraints (it’s a play, it has a summary, it has a title) that you will more easily get in the way of what you would like to accomplish – figuring out your story.”

A-ha! She is so very right! Much of the “how to write a play” books that i read last year, when this project started, directed ME to write a log line & synopsis to help ME get started. And I gather that I have to look at it just as that! It’s only a beginning. (Note to self. Archive that draft!) Already since her note I have realized that, although she lived part of it, she doesn’t know the whole story. She doesn’t know, nor really truly understand, my experiences from my perspective but more importantly nor do I. I need to allow the story to unfold. That’s a sure fire way to find something.

Then the resident expert, my younger sister, said: “Keep telling the story. That’s at the crux of it all, the storytelling you are trying to do. That’s why we, the audience, care…we’re intrigued by the story. I just read your blog post, Just stop it already, and what popped out to me was this: “Who’s gonna steal an idea about a crazy woman finding herself?” Specifically the “a crazy woman finding herself” Is this your story? It’s actually very compelling. I want read it, I want to go on that journey.”

Aha – she got it! Before I did. (Insert the wise words from my older sister.) That is what my story is about, today!! It is about being on this never ending path of finding myself; it is a spiritual journey… I am writing it, whatever it will become, as if to imply that each of our ‘beautiful’ lives are fated. And to do that I need to let go to see the message better. In his new book “Growing into Grace” Mastin Kipp, the founder of the, is trying to communicate: Life doesn’t happen to us. Life happens for us!

If I do nothing else; I am now on this journey, I am going to let this happen to ME!

ME & MY Starfish

I had had too much stimulation for one day and went to my corner deli to read a Newsweek article on leadership and to eat a sandwich. I couldn’t remember the last time I ate… I knew to keep my head down as I didn’t want to be further distracted or leak the secrets of the code. By this point it was clear that this body of angels & I had many enemies.

Slowly and suddenly everything around me grew silent, the table next to me cleared their trays and left, and the commotion on the sidewalk seemed to slow down and then came the cough, [Japan Man] who I had only met once prior was leaving the deli with [everybody loves the Italian guy] who was holding a CityPaper.

God bless them, they were confused… they thought my firm was the crux of my trouble. You see in DC everybody, like most people in cosmopolitan cities, has an agenda but in DC there are also those secret agendas. [Japan Man] and [everybody loves the Italian guy] were sent to guide me into revealing to the local rag the injustices of the small architectural practice that I worked for in hopes of putting me out of my misery. They thought that, that alone, would help me sleep. In many ways it would have but I was entangled in something that had more depth, something more deserving of… the Post.

Long story short, much to my surprise [Japan Man] ended up inviting me for a drink at Dragonfly, a swank white bar in DuPont Circle. I had been eager to get to get to know him. He had an air about him; he was self-assured and always had a look that there was more going on than he was at liberty to tell you. James Bond like and this was the night that was going to I learn why!

About a half an hour into our conversation a good friend of mine entered the bar gave me a kiss, complimented how stunning I looked and sat six (6) stools away from us waiting for his date. He watched me flirt with [Japan Man] as he sipped his martini… (I questioned his friendship and wondered if he had been planted in my world.)

About a half an hour later another very attractive man in a khaki linen suit and a pink and orange tie entered the bar. He sat closer to us and ordered a sapphire, tonic and roses. (My spidey sense went up… That was my drink?!?! Besides, his tie was perfect for the occasion: Me, naive little girl & he, on a mission.) His English accent was thick and his body language screamed I am ready to PARTY!

Not but moments later [Japan Man] kissed me goodbye (on the cheek, it was our first kiss) and made a comment about starfish. My starfish? He noticed my Tiffany’s starfish?!?! (Did he also know about the Macy’s bags? How much did he know?)

So now I think: [Japan Man’s] task was deeper than I initially understood & now his ‘job’ was fulfilled: [Japan Man] brought me to that bar to meet the [Agent] in the pink & orange tie b/c he, [Japan Man] couldn’t afford to get caught up in my mess! He had other fish to fry. He was after the Architects… he was just the delivery boy!

… I have yet to hallucinate, or so I can remember but if I could, the story would have ended like this: The [Agent] took me out clubbing (I have never been clubbing) to tell me in a loud crowded place that “they are working on it… that there is truth behind my conspiracies  & I should keep quiet”! But alas, like most of my fantasies sitting alone at the bar, from that point forward, was rather uneventful.

a BLIND date

I was set up! A hairdresser that I had been to several times really didn’t listen to me… she was a BAD hair dresser. I took my friend to her one weekend so that she could get her hair styled for her wedding. I took her for the trial run… Weeks later, the day of my friend’s wedding; I went alone to get my hair styled. (My friend had found someone else.) The hair dresser (I forget her name but recall that she was Russian also styled the hair of some very prominent republican politician’s wives) thought it was ME that was getting married!?!?

I tried to deny it when she asked but when she pushed, I played along. She asked me about the man who I was marrying, where we were going to live, what I was going to wear and what color flowers we should put in my hair. I felt self-conscious about lying; as she also managed to talk one of her co-workers into doing my make-up for FREE. (I had never had my make-up done by anyone else.)

Nonetheless, on my drive to my good friend & neighbor’s wedding, in a rainbow printed dress with PURPLE flowers in my hair, it was clear in MY head that it wasn’t ME that was getting married. But that didn’t last long, upon arrival I saw a painting in a gallery; it was a hunting scene and MY prince charming on a horse in a RED coat. Many other events over the course of several months led up to this event but during the wedding, I imagined that my sweetheart was on the other side of the fence (my friend’s wedding was in a very nice private garden in a cottage at The Inn at Little Washington) and I imagined that I was marrying my long-lost love?!?!

I was careful not to drink too much champagne at the reception and left the party early as I was completely exhausted and completely psychotic; I do not know how I didn’t crash as I raced to get back to Dupont to meet my best friend from New York, at a comedy show. (More about that show later… in another post.)

On the way to the comedy show, in the circle (imagine of all places), an East-Indian man sitting on a park bench greeted ME. (Somehow this relates to something that the hairdresser said but without my diaries I cannot remember what. It was in a discussion about Astrology &/or Yoga that she mentioned that I deserved a good man.) He asked what I did that day and I told him that… “I got married”. Within minutes, I couldn’t continue the lie, I told him that I was mentally ill and was just pretending. I hope I apologized for lying.

Worried about ME, he asked to meet me in the same place the next day. And so I did, the next day at TWO, after another reception, I laid in the grass, close to the same place that I met the man the night before, with my left hand over my heart (ring finger) and right hand on my belly (keep center). You yogi’s know that’s the opposite way that one is trained but leave it to me to put my own twist in things!

If he saw me, he didn’t disturb me – perhaps he & his cohort’s thought that I could sleep it off. If only I could just sleep it off.

I bought a black teddy for he who Dances with (the) Wolves

I was paging through the newspaper one Valentines Day weekend before I left DC + Kevin Costner was featured in, I believe, a military suit… and it made me think of an old fling. You must understand at the time I thought that THE WORLD – or at least a select few Washington legals, lawyers and bureaucrats were trying to teach me a lesson… I was discovering that seeds were planted in every day paraphernalia: newspapers, magazines, etc.. And I was reading messages into everything. In a way, perhaps, I was discovering my subconscious mind and how it was/is effected by the whirl of information that passes us by every day.

In this case, when I saw Kevin Costner’s photo, it reminded me of a photo I have, (or had, dunno what I got rid of over the years) of a very austere looking gentleman with strong jaw bones and a big nose in a dark suit. I loved this man a long time ago and the photo of KC triggered a desire to rekindle that old fling and pretend that I had a Valentine. On the off chance that it was a message from my X, I bought a ‘lil black number from Victoria’s Secrets on a very snowy day in February 2006.

On the surface, my passions didn’t really fit in (DC) but I learned something very basic there – that might be taught in Marketing 101. I learned that there are messages behind: branding, the colors one wears on game day, the sunglasses you choose to wear (at the time, I wore Dior with tiny hearts), the grocery stores one chooses to shop at – stuff as simple as whether or not you chose to use Pur-Elle or a generic hand sanitizer.

What I mean by “messages” is that similar to the code of fraternity brothers… Translating these messages comes easy to the highly involved type, the ones that pay close attention to news, fashion, sports (whatever your flavor) and have a competitive spirit. No idiot wears pink to a football game… but then again I might!?!?