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  • Kathleen Dillon

a bipolar love song

Author’s Note: I was inspired by ire’ne lara silva’s “diabetic love song” and wanted to try and write a similar poem about my experience having bipolar disorder. I wanted to play around with this idea of having a relationship with my bipolar, a relationship that means a lot to me and really impacts who I am as a person but that is not always easy. I was inspired by ire’ne’s way of framing this poem as a love song, even though her experience of having diabetes comes with great difficulty and many changes to the life she lived before.

you are my life

did you know that

the thought of this

makes me misty-eyed

there is no separating us

you are part of me

and i cannot imagine

my life without you

you make me slow down

to pause and appreciate

to feel present with myself

and see the world around me

because of you i am connected

to my emotions to my feelings

to my body to my spirit

to my daily, vacillating mood

but also because of you

i take a pill every day

fight fatigue & dizziness

my muscles ache

i cancel plans

stay in bed all day

weep myself to sleep

longing for relief

i can no longer party all night

have drink after drink

or feel i fully belong

at the bar with my peers

i am more well-acquainted

with the pharmacist

than a bartender

or liquor store clerk

but you have also taught me


i can no longer be

a chameleon

my mood may change

from moment to moment

but that change is not

for me to fit in

i am my own person

whatever that may entail

you would not have me

any other way

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