A Letter to Myself on my Birthday

Note: I have wanted write this blog post since day one of starting The Bipolar Writer blog. It seemed to fit that on a day like today— my birthday— that I would share this letter. It means the world to me to be in a place where this is possible, to talk about where I have been. This letter is written to James Edgar Skye, my pen name.

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A Letter to The Bipolar Writer

What a journey it has been to get here, James.

I can remember a time where you honestly believed that you would never make it. You always thought that the darkness that still sometimes engulfs your life would eventually take you— and there were a few close calls along the way. Somehow you find the will to fight, even on those days where you thought it would be your last.

Look at you now. Just a few months away from getting your Bachelor’s Degree in creative writing with a specialization in fiction. You found your writing side in the past few years in minoring in screenwriting, political science, and journalism. It has been a journey of peaks and valleys, the good and bad parts of being Bipolar seemed always find its way in your studies— and yet you are going to graduate summa cum laude. I remember the doubts you had over the last four years, and each time you proved yourself wrong by always excelling at everything school threw at you.

Even though you never got your Hogwarts letter, you still maintained your love for reading. Now you have turned that love into a writing career.

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I can barely remember your first birthday after your diagnosis became Bipolar One. You were a different person then, and you have come so far from the days where you barely noticed time passing you by in this life. The first three years of your diagnosis was filled with so much negative. Depression became your most familiar companion. Anxiety seemed to fill your days, and so you hid from the world— and you barely left your house those three years.

I always wondered why you gave into the darkness three different times in your life and turned to suicide as a way to escape. It was the worst parts of your life, and luckily you survived. Now, look at you, sharing your experiences with suicide and self-harm to advocate that there is a better way. Suicide is never the answer— that is what you tell people now. You had to live through a lot, but it was all worth it to help others. I believe that you are helping people.

Who knew you could find the strength to tell your story. You really have come a long way, and now you have a real chance at helping others. Writing and creating The Bipolar Writer blog was the best decision that you made outside of going back to school. Now you have finished the first draft of your memoir, and now you are looking toward the future instead of the past.

On this journey, you have found ways to cope. Listening to music and your favorite K-pop group have gotten you through so much. Writing finally became your way of life, and you have indeed found your place in this world. It has helped you grow as a better person in life. It defines the best qualities of who you are— never let that go. You found watching baseball— the Los Angeles Dodgers— as your way to cope during the summer months. You get through the worst parts of your depression and anxiety, and you are always open to finding new ways of dealing.

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Sure, you are still a work in progress. At times social anxiety gets the best of you. At times you lose yourself in panic attacks. Depression likes to sneak up and take over for a time. It’s not a forever thing. But this Bipolar life is always evolving, and you still find a way of adapting.

There is so much to look forward to James. Selling your screenplay. Publishing your memoir. Working on your Masters later this year. For the first time in this life, you are making plans for the future, and the goals that you have worked so hard on are within your grasp. There has been so much pain over the last ten years, but there was so much good. You found a way to live with being Bipolar— without it defining who you are inside and out. You just have to give yourself a break and work on not being your harshest critic.

There will be days where being Bipolar is all you can deal with, but you go to sleep each night knowing tomorrow is another day. Anxiety and depression are a part of who you are— but they don’t define you. The most significant thing I want to tell you is that you are a fighter. It was always there a part of you. It took you so long to get here, but the journey was worth it.

There was a time when you didn’t want to live. That time has passed. You know it is God’s plan that you are alive.

You used to wake up and hate that you were still alive. Now you wake up with the knowledge that the day before was a fight— and you fought well. Always keep fighting, it is the best part of you, James.

Here is to many more birthdays to come and finding happiness in this Bipolar and social anxiety life. I’m on a rollercoaster that only goes up.

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J.E. Skye

 

 

 

Please Help me Publish my Memoir

I have finished the first draft of my memoir “The Bipolar Writer,” and I have decided to go down the self-publishing route. If you can donate anything towards my goal, it would mean the world to me. Those that give will get a special mention in my memoir on a page dedicated to those that made my memoir possible. Thank you in advance!

$5.00

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoAustin Mabe

unsplash-logoSteve Halama

unsplash-logoRae Tian

unsplash-logoCampbell Boulanger

unsplash-logoWang Xi

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108 Replies to “A Letter to Myself on my Birthday”

  1. Happy birthday Overcomer! May God continue to bless you with good health, physical and mental strength, happiness and peace. May you use your challenges as stepping stones to a brighter and better future. In Jesus name Amen. Have a wonderful day.😊🎂🎉🎈

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is by far the most self reflecting and powerful letter one could possibly write to one’s self. Your honesty and your determination is admirable. Thank you for this James. Thank you for sharing. Darkness reflects truth in the light- N.F.M

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I thought this was such a powerful post. It’s not easy discussing or explaining the day to day struggles with mental health, and life can absolutely get dark, but it’s so powerful to see you’re pushing past it and excelling in life, and more importantly accomplishing your own personal goals. So inspiring ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Happiest of days to you! And congrats on all you have accomplished!

    You write about bipolar disorder not defining you in one place. In a couple others you write about being bipolar. I think these two statements contradict each other. ARE you bipolar? Or do you HAVE bipolar? Someone with diabetes would not say ‘I am diabetes’ but it is not unusual to say ‘I am bipolar.’ Like you said, it isn’t who you are, but something you have. My two cents.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am Bipolar. I have other writers on my blog that post articles so you might be reading posts from others who aren’t Bipolar. Mine are all under James Edgar Skye. It is something I have but it doesn’t define me.

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      1. I personally prefer to tell people that ‘I have bipolar disorder’ versus ‘I am bipolar’ to make the distinction. That’s all. I really enjoyed your post and can tell you have put a lot of time and energy into writing.

        Like

      2. I am both. I have Bipolar disorder and I am Bipolar. It’s a part of me but like I said it doesn’t defin me. I say I am Bipolar too because it’s true.

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      3. Now I understand. Thank you for clarifying. You use language carefully and I wasn’t understanding what you meant.

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      4. Its okay. I get it. We all define our illness in our own ways. That’s a part of how we have figured things out in our heads. No worries. Have a great day!

        Like

  5. Happy Birthday! This is such an inspiring post, you should be so proud of all the things you’ve overcome and accomplished 🙌🏽🙌🏽 May you continue to do so and be more successful 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is very powerful and beautiful. Happy birthday! Congrats on making it this far and this is to all the wonderful events yet to come (:

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Happy Birthday!

    And oh my Gosh, I just wrote a post in a similar way and I didn’t even see this until now.
    Great minds 😉

    But your post is awesome.

    I hope you’re had an amazing day and here’s to many more 🙂 x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your kind words. I thought it was a perfect time to share this with my blog. It means the world to me that so many people have made my birthday special.

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  8. Happy Birthday. I came upon your blog and I am glad I did. This a very powerful and honest piece. It is hard to write about ones personal life, but I find it to be the best route if you want other to relaten, understandx and be inspired.

    Thank you for sharing such a delicate masterpiece. Your words will reach many minds and inspire many more.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Happy birthday,

    Please check 2! 3! Hoping for more a good days by BTS, it helps me healing my self so much, maybe it will work the same on you, 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Happy Birthday! I don’t know you, but we share so many commonalities, that I can’t wait to read more. My Bachelor’s is in English Lit/Poetry; ky Master’s is in Professional and Technical Writing. All my best.
    In the hard times, always remember: “whatever you are going through is a life-season, not a life sentence.” You can quote me on that. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I think I’m a bit late in wishing you – happy birthday… But I’ll wish you an extremely happy life, with few bouts of depression, and even if they do come, I’ll wish that you find the power to win them over..

    I love the concept of writing a letter to yourself! The letters just beautiful..
    I also have a piece of advice..
    I can’t find a donation option or link on your post. Maybe it’s there on your site..
    My recommendation is that you only display an excerpt so that people click the read more icon to get redirected to your site where the donation icon is present… I’d love to contribute! ☺
    Once again a lovely post!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. That was absolutely beautiful James. Thank you for sharing the wonderful gift of yourself with us. I hope you had a very happy, love-filled and blessed birthday and celebrate each day like it is your birth-day, because you should be celebrated. Hugs, Sue

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Wow, this was beautiful to read. Thank you for choosing to share this and I hope you continue to grow, as you have already come so far. You are exactly right- you are not defined by your illness. Your writing is wonderful and I’m so pleased that I got a chance to read this.
    Happy late birthday.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. “A work in progress”
    Aren’t we all?
    Every tiny step you take is progress.
    Every day you decide to fight instead of giving up is progress.
    Every time you look towards the future instead of the past is progress.
    You’re progressing. And that’s the most important thing a person can do.
    Keep going, my friend. Keep going. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will keep going. Thank you for you kind words. Everyday is progress for me and for so many of us. The tiny steps are what make us stronger.

      Like

  15. Wow, this was very moving. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I’m amazed at what you’ve been through and how you have overcome so much! So grateful to be a part of what you are doing here. You are a force for good in the world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Chelsea. This really means the world to me. It’s been a small struggle today so getting a comment like this changes everything and makes what I do worth it.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Well done for living your dream of writing – this post is testimony to how good you are at it!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Hi James Edgar Skye and what a beautiful name you have!
    I can imagine how much you have been working with what struggles you and I am happy for you and each one person who survived their own hell. Unfortunately, I also belong in the same place and hopefully, I wish I will one day achieve a more stable “yes, I’ve made it”.
    Best of luck and success with what you do in your life 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think everyone who is “in that place” can achieve anything that they want to. Just keep going. It sounds cliche but I got her by taking it one day at a time. If you ever need anything let me know. I like my name as well!

      Liked by 1 person

  18. This was an enjoyably transparent read. I can see how this blog has built up so much momentum already. I have a friend who is bi-polar as well as an aunt who unfortunately went the way drugs for the past 16 years. One of my goals is to rehabilitate her long term. Myfamily has no lost hope. You undoubtedly powerful James, to have made it this far with your head upheld proudly. You give me hope for the ones I care about. Your light is Hope, no depression can discolor that. You know who you are✊🏿👐🏿

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you my friend. These types of comments make it worth it. I hope that aunt finds her way. The process can be very long. Stay patient. You are doing an amazing thing for your aunt.

      Liked by 1 person

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