10 Things I Hate About You – A Love Sonnet to Mania

10 things I hate about you 2

So I’ll admit it in public, I love the movie “10 Things I Hate About You.”  It was the epitome of early 2000’s living, and was a great cultural piece.  Plus – it was a wonderful take on The Taming of the Shrew and anything Shakespeare is solid in my book.  The denouement of the movie comes when Kat, played by Julia Stiles, reads her poem to the class – the famed “10 Things I Hate About You,” poem.

I’ll admit something else in public.  I’m struggling with the idea of saying goodbye to mania as a constant – albeit unscheduled – visitor.  I miss it.  In therapy today, we talked about going through the stages of grief for losing that part of me, and this fits right into it I think.  Please be patient over the next few days and weeks as I still find my way through this very real grief.  The mania brought a lot into my life, both of a positive and a negative nature, but I’m focusing on the positive to keep myself positive.  I’m having to say goodbye to something that was a part of my existence for probably my entire life until six weeks ago, and it’s hard.  I’m grieving that loss, and I’m not doing a very good job of it. the entries for the next while will be me trying to address the mania, and find the positives that did come from it – a rolling eulogy if you will to Manic Will.   With that being said, here is my  take on the “10 Things I Hate About” poem:

  • I hate the way you talk through me
  • The way you make me cut my hair.
  • I hate the way you make me feel 
  • I hate it when you’re not there.
  • I hate your pie in the sky promises
  • And the way they fill my mind.
  • I  hate you so much it makes me sick,
  • And I better take my pills on time.
  • I  hate the way you’re what I need.
  • I hate it when you lie.
  • I hate it when you make me laugh,
  • Even worse when you make me cry.
  • I hate it when you’re not around,
  • And the fact that I’ve sent you away.
  • But mostly I hate the way I don’t hate you, 
  • Not even close.
  • Not even a little bit.
  • Mania, I miss you every day. 

Most of you probably just read that and think, “What in the world did I just read?”

But please understand that you don’t understand how much a part of me that manic high was.  Understand that for me, it wasn’t just adrenaline, and it wasn’t just a momentary thing – it was as transformative for me as any illicit substance.  I am choosing to believe that I can be a great person again (still?), without the mania.  But that doesn’t change the reality that I am going to miss all I was, and all I was able to do with it.

If you’ve been with me since the beginning, you saw that I was reading An Unquiet Mind by Dr. Kay Jamison.  I finished it the other day, and I want to share her finish to the book to close out this post:

” … mania itself (has) brought into my life a different level of sensing and feeling and thinking.  Even when I have been the most psychotic – delusional, hallucinating, frenzied – have been aware of finding new corners of my mind and heart.  Some of those corners were incredible and beautiful and took my breath away and made me feel as though I could die right then and the images would sustain me.

” … always, there were those new corners and – when feeling my normal self, beholden for that self to medicine and love – I cannot imagine become jaded to life because I know of those limitless corners, with their limitless views.”

If that is the lasting legacy of my mania – that because of it, I can look at life with a different level of sensing and feeling and thinking … well then, I suppose that is a legacy worth remembering.



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