Friday, April 1, 2016

Crazy

I'm a little bit crazy, and I'm okay with that. 

I realize calling myself crazy is probably frowned upon and/or considered an exaggerated, ableist slur by my psychiatrist mother, other crazy people, and the mental illness advocacy community (the Juneau iteration of which I will be performing in front of at their annual fundraiser tonight). 


That's not how I mean it though. I'm not trying to affix the crazy label to anyone but myself and others who are okay with calling themselves crazy and/or being called crazy. The way I'm using the word, crazy is just a neutral fact like any other: hair color, eye color, height, weight, etc. 

Crazy.

I've long ago accepted that my mind apparently does not work like other people's, in terms of the noise, racket, and clutter rattling around inside of it. 

I accept the fact that sometimes I need to sit down under a searing hot shower, get under the covers, shove ear buds in my ears, listen to music, cry, and sleep for as long as I can. 

I accept that things other people do--especially people in whom I've made the mistake of becoming overly emotionally invested, people who are incapable of giving me a return on that investment--get under my skin and hijack my thoughts and emotions in ways unimaginable to most people (people who are less crazy than me, I guess). 

I accept that my mind will wander to hypothetical, catastrophic scenarios a lot more often than seems "normal."

I accept that I have to take medicine every day of my life to quiet my mind so I can transform into the best possible version of myself. With some degree of inner conflict (not much), I put 20 mg of Prozac under my tongue every morning, and as I swallow it, every time, I feel consciously grateful it exists. I know it's going to do the job it's supposed to do: turn down the volume of my mind so I can go about my day in relative tranquility. Sunshine and yoga alone won't do the trick. I don't try to convince anyone else of that.

I've given up on asking myself why I'm a little bit crazy: Genes? Only childhood? A psychiatrist for a mother? All of the above? (For the record, I think it's mostly genes). But it doesn't matter anyway, since I know being a little bit crazy is just part of who I am. Like having brown hair or being 5"3. I'm never not going to be a little bit crazy, just like I'm never going to be blonde and 5"10.

And that's okay, because there are good things about being a little bit crazy too: The creative energy that's a byproduct of my particular kind of craziness; the empathy for other people it lays bare; the facility with words and the perspective it gives me; a certain recklessness that often reaps its own, unexpected rewards.

Those are invaluable gifts, and I don't think I'd be able to access them if I weren't just a little bit crazy. 

I don't have a choice, but even if I did, I know deep down I wouldn't trade being crazy for anything.



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