Being Bipolar isn't EASY

and the Art of Slowing it Down

Tag Archives: Music

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…

Jesus is just alright with ME

2:32pm  01.27.2011

I think it’s been a long journey… and I am at the point where I don’t know what I believe anymore! Thankfully the journey isn’t over. Here’s how it started: I was raised Catholic and went to church and CCD regularly growing up. In High School I affiliated myself with religious youth groups both inside and outside the church and went to church on a regular basis – often mid-week, to pray the rosary, with my “Friends”. In college I attended Sunday mass, Alone, and maintained close friendships with fellow Christians both near and far. I always looked forward to going to church around the Major Holidays: Christmas and Easter, but don’t any longer… I can barely recite Catholic prayers, anymore. The Lord’s Prayer is FINE with ME but most of the others I don’t support and believe it would be blasphemous to recite.

I think my loss of faith in the Catholic Church coincided with the loss of my ruby cross in NYC, shortly after running half of the marathon in 1999…

After graduating college I took ballet classes in mid-town near Carnegie Hall. I was looking for something that would give me (physical) grace. I had been known to be rather clumsy; like a ‘bull in a china shop’… always cutting myself in architecture school but couldn’t handle being the fattest girl in class. That’s when I found yoga. I started practicing Kundalini yoga and questioning my faith; specifically my faith in Jesus.

Let me be clear: Yoga didn’t stop me from attending mass at St. Paul the Apostle near Lincoln Center… (Paulist’s, as I understand them, are most contemporary in their faith; believing in a universal God.) Their priest, at that time was young and, used to do funny things like make the congregation sing “Take me out to the ball game” or talk about different religions.

It was a most I-opening experience; and I trust that it along side my amalgamation of yoga practices steered me away from the Catholic Church. At that time I remember reading a great deal about Buddhism and Hinduism… and believed that my asana’s were prayer. And not dissimilar to High School, I used to get up often before the sun rose to chant with a group of like-minded Lower East Side New Yorker’s. I befriended nearly none of them but was happy to pray with them. (A similar story holds true when I lived in DC. I frequented a Vipasana Meditation group.)

But those days were a long time ago and has little to do with what I am experiencing 2day. I don’t know what’s going on for sure, I am not “practicing” Yoga but I am trying to live a yogic life, but I can tell you that I agree with the song; “Jesus – he’s my friend”. And believe he led me to my husband and his family. You see: I have dated, not in this order, Christians, Agnostics, Atheists, a Buddhist, a Muslim, a Jew – considered converting to Judaism – but married a Hindu.

My husband’s parents are stout Hindu’s – paying homage to their Gods every morning, after showering and before eating. His mother goes to temple on Tuesday and fasts regularly on different auspicious occasions. (My parent’s faith is not so dissimilar but they don’t follow such visible daily rituals. For example, I don’t know when they pray but know that they do. Catholicism is much less demonstrative – or at least it was/ is in our house. I think the first cross my parents showcased in their house, outside their bedroom, was a cross that I bought them in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico while on vacation with my future jewish in-laws, or so I thought was possible at that time.)

So what does the title of this post have to do with my disorder? Everything!!!!! As I believe that my manic moments have been HIGHly religious experiences. That’s why I enjoyed them as much  as I did. They were experiences that exhibit me being totally immersed in the spirit and connected with the Universe… moments when I find meaning around every corner; in every logo and symbol… in numbers, colors and words – in what people are wearing in what roads they choose to travel…

What do I mean? It can be a simple confirmation, i.e. someone handing me an ‘everything’ bagel because I think, during those times that, everything is related or as difficult as thinking Matt Lauer in his purple shirt is trying to get a message to ME or my conspirators. In highly psychotic moments I believe that I am tapped into the Universe and on my way to discovering secrets that lie deep beneath the things we take for granted.

At heart, I do believe that EVERYTHING is related but have recognized that I trap myself during manic moments believing that there is some great conspiracy unfolding before my eyes; that the mysteries of law and politics and the nature of the universe will be revealed to me. Yes, to me… but also to everybody/ anybody else that is paying attention to the details.

My last hospitalization (February 2007) really broke my heart. I think it was then that I first questioned (when the whole thing was over) if there was a God. Having just moved to LV and having no network to back me up – I continued questioning long after my psychotic thoughts subsided. At the time I maintained some semblance of a physical spiritual practice but it was becoming more of an exercise. I wasn’t attending classes – I couldn’t afford classes and my home practice was just okay – diluted without fellow worshippers.

The fact that my husband doesn’t really believe in God effects me. While we were dating it was of some concern that he had little faith but I found that he embodied much of what I had spent most of my spiritual life searching for – so it was OKAY that we didn’t see eye to eye. I respected him and he respected ME.

Before, formally, meeting his parents I wrote them a letter introducing myself. I wrote: “I have read about Hinduism and the Indian culture over the years and have learned that I share the view that marriage is a sacrament – a merging of two families, I too believe in karma – that every action, thought, or decision one makes has consequences and I believe in reincarnation. My family, Catholics, do not share all of these values but they respect how I have grown as a result of my expanded experiences and admire that I have made them my own.”

That said, I have a great deal to learn about Hinduism. I have a great deal to learn before I can call myself Hindu; let alone a Brahmin. (My husband thinks that I am Brahmin because I married him but, today, I only think that that’s probable in a past life…)

Nonetheless, we are raising our son Hindu (we gave him a Hindu name)… and that’s kinda scary; as I need to learn it’s tenants so that I can reinforce it’s lessons. I know symbolically that they believe “We are One” and are against killing but the rest is rather fuzzy, technically speaking. (Every time I read a passage about Hinduism, I am given so much background/ history that my head spins… That said, I remember answering my husband, when he asked a short while ago: “How would raising our children Hindu make your family feel?”, that I was much more comfortable with the blind faith that I had in Hinduism [mind you, I can not speak Hindi nor begin to understand Sanskrit] than I had in the Catholic Church.)

At the end of the day, I am not saying One path is right and One is wrong. I don’t know where I will go from HERE to get at the foundation of my beliefs but I want my children to be able to figure out for themselves what they believe. And for that I need to be able to honestly answer some very heavy-duty questions. I can only hope that, before they can formulate those questions that, I regain an understanding of my faith before they are too old to know that Mommy is winging it.

In all fairness, I need to revisit the Catholic Sacraments. It’s my friendship with Jesus after all that led me to where I am today. And where I am (or how I got here); I wouldn’t change it for the world!