Starting My Own Ghostwriting Business

The Bipolar Writer is going legit, at least that is the plan for the future. I am looking for those who are ready to write their story but have no idea where to start. The Bipolar Writer Ghostwriting Services is the place for you, and my focus is on writing your memoir. I do offer other writing services.

I offer a comprehensive memoir ghostwriting package, but I will work with you. I have been writing the memoirs of others for five years and wrote my own, and now I know the next step is starting my business. I have been through it all, and I have the knowhow to take you from concept to completion. If you are interested, please reach out through my business email @ jameseskye22@gmail.com. Let’s talk about the future of your memoir.

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Mindful.

I have been trying to find the words about how I feel about my mania. All I can think is that I am grateful. There are a lot of ways that mania manifests. Every single person experiences something different, hence the adventure in finding your perfect medication cocktail. So I put myself in debt that puts me back a few hundred here and there. It is a blow to my finances but I can recover. There are people who don’t recover as a result of their mania. Or they do unforgivable damage. I have to remind myself of this. I have been at that point as well. I started adding a bit of hostility to the manic spending. That is when I got treatment.

I do remind myself. It isn’t hard to remember. My mania is frustrating at most. My depression, that is the real issue for me.

My mania reveals that I am impulsive. This is true in my day to day as well. I just don’t seem to give a fuck when manic. That is the best way to put it. I am not remorseful. Not yet. I am having a grand old time, buying this and that. Then it all starts to come in the mail, The sheer amount of packages will send me back to balance the books. POP. My euphoria filled bubble has been shattered. Now it is mindfulness checkins, doctor appointments, medication changes (and side effects 🎊 ), and an honest conversation with my support system.

When I read the things I have written when manic, or the things that I have done while manic, I am mostly okay with it.

I am okay with the gibberish writings. I used to try to make sense of it but then you find yourself questioning your sanity. Chill, we would be doing the same thing if we found our old diaries.

I am holding myself accountable and have someone helping me by checking in. I am easily guilted so just the simple, “are you overspending?” is enough to guilt me into not spending.

So what do I think about my mania?

It is euphoric sometimes, but mostly manifests in manic depressive episodes. If you are picturing someone who stays in bed, doesn’t shower for a considerable amount of time, and has lack of motivation for anything…..that’s me.

I don’t look forward to it, but here it is. With every symptom of bipolar, I have been trying to find skills to individually cope with each part. overspending-keep a checks and balances of EVERY purchase. Anger-positivity, attitude exercises. Mood changes-therapy.

It is both a blessing and a curse.

 

Mania.

Please know that the following is me writing something when this discovery hit me. I plan to write about my thoughts on my manic journal on another post tomorrow.

No clever titles today.

I am manic.

I might start to ramble. I am trying not to, but you know how that can be. I started blogging because I wanted to be a voice in this community. Not only do I want to normalize mental health, but I want to be a friend. I want to be a friend to the people who are suffering from mental illness and I want to be resource for their loved ones who want to ask the hard questions.

This is something I need to share if I can focus enough. Mania manifests differently in everyone who suffers from it. Some of us aren’t at the point where we can pick it out, and others know their tells. I have been having trouble sleeping and using my herbal medications has become pretty consistent. I try not to use it on the regular so I am sitting here racking my brain trying to understand why I could possibly be experiencing this.

I was contemplating doing something: boom. My thought went to purchasing something. WHY. I JUST went over my finances a couple days ago because we had been eating out a lot. I realized how short I was on my savings goals for the big move coming up. I made a mental note to remember how disappointing that was if I started trying to spend unnecessarily. Do you know how much money I have spent on shopping recently? I am no addict but I am spending outside of my means. like 300 in savings here, 100 there. Granted it isn’t the rent or car note this time, but it may as well have been. I still have to buy furniture, pay the rest of the deposit, rent, the moving company, and the utility deposits. I start to get irritable typically, but my medications have been adjusted since my last episode.

So yeah, I am a reckless manic. I just realized that I have been manic. I just didn’t think of all the symptoms together and that sucks. Can’t see my therapist for another two weeks because she is booked, I don’t have the money to see my doctor. I have to build up the courage to tell my mom. She can hold me accountable and the guilt alone might set me straight lol.

MY mania isn’t violent, physical self harm, or intentional. Read that again.

MY MANIA.

but everyone’s looks different.

My mania is managed 99% of the time.

Pot.

**This post discusses the use of marijuana. Please do not read if you are triggered by discussions about drug use. I am not a medical professional and the below information should not replace treatment by a licensed health care provider. I also live in a state (Arizona) that has legalized medicinal marijuana. I am a rule follower by nature**

 

____________________________________________________________________________________________

I have been wanting to discuss marijuana and its uses in mental health. Personally, I use it pretty consistently. I do not drive, work, or care for anybody under the influence. Again, big proponent of rules over here. I believe in bodily autonomy and I don’t get to decide if you want to be around someone under the influence. I would never attempt to convince you of my beliefs as I respect everyone’s opinions.

I primarily use this for stress and anxiety symptoms, although it is officially prescribed to me for PTSD. I feel like my mind is in so many places at once sometimes. I imagine that it has the same effects on me that ADHD medication has on those with ADHD. It calms me, I can concentrate better, and my tension is no longer affecting me physically. I can’t convey in words how much better I feel. I sleep better with it as well. I have never let it interfere with my professional life. In no way do I feel like drugs are the answer to problems. If anything, I avoid smoking or alcohol when I am depressed or manic. As strong as the desire to numb the feelings is, I don’t feel that is healthy. I don’t want to associate bad times with great enjoyable substances. I don’t go out for a drink on a bad day. I wouldn’t smoke either. I will smoke when I feel anxious, but not when I am manic. when I am stressed, but not when I am making major decisions. I guess it kinda sounds silly that someone would follow so many rules that they set for themselves over something so trivial. I sincerely believe that there is a such thing as too much of a good thing.

So, yeah. I smoke pot. I feel more productive and relaxed just enough into easing myself back to the outgoing person I was. I have to let my guard down and try to regain the self confidence I once had. Anyway, I am rambling.

Let me know what you think?

-B

p.s. Full disclosure, this post was originally posted on my personal blog here.

Clarity.

This is a two part post: The next part is scheduled to be posted tomorrow.

I want to start off by saying that I voluntarily see my psych doc weekly because I need a lot of accountability regarding my medication. It is a personal choice and in no way does it reflect my dedication to my mental health. I also have a therapist that I see biweekly. I am in no way manic and this is not a manic episode and it is not religious mania. I have been on a spiritual exploration for a few years now.

I always said that I was an atheist, and then I realized what an atheist is and I am not that. Then I said I was agnostic. I told people that I am too selfish to sit and learn about a particular faith to claim one. People really respected that and I meant it, but I wasn’t agnostic. I believed in a God, I just didn’t know which one. I prayed to a God. My God. It didn’t matter. I knew that I had no true control in my life. I wasn’t an accident. The world is bigger than me.

Then I started finding myself longing to be like a lot of people who emulate Jesus. I wanted something to be passionate about and to continue learning about. I wanted a higher power that I could name and a way to get to know Him. I turned to the Bible. Turns out it is literally thousands of pages. Where would I start? Would I understand it? Will it capture my attention or overwhelm me and I quit?

I tried a few bible studies and I completed maybe 3 of them. I tried and quit several. I really wanted a starting point, a place to get a foundation for the rest of my learning. I joined a small group so I could dive into the Bible and its meaning with an intimate group. It was amazing, and then I felt called out about being the only single person in the room. I didn’t go back. Then I started googling “what the Bible had to say about….” and reading from there.

I was having a really tough time with my sister. We were going back and forth about everything it seemed. Who is cleaning more, who is chipping in more, you name it. It was causing a huge rift. we smoothed it over but I still feel this tension in the air. Like she is waiting for the shoe to drop. It is familiar because that is how I felt when I had to move back in with them. It is strange to be on the other side and needing to forgive. This is the first time it occurred to me to turn to the Bible first. So I googled, “the Bible and forgiveness” and “biblical stories about forgiveness”. It returned wonderful scripture. I then wrote some of it down. Once I reviewed what I had found, I picked out some of my favorites. I noticed a lot of them were from the book of Matthew. I found myself emerged in this story that finally told me the ins and outs of how Jesus came to be. It has all kinda tumbled from there. I think I pick up my bible at least every other day now. I still am not completely independent. I still reach for the internet for a starting point, but I still read from there. I just feel better. I feel like I am in love with learning and also seeking comfort and guidance. It really calms me. I started to wonder if maybe that calm can be obtained through meditation and manifestation. I believe in manifestation. Maybe it is the positivity that it exudes or the feeling of influence it provides. Either way it feels like I accomplished something.

So I started looking into meditation and homeopathic ways of treatments or guidance.

(continued in next post)

Community Mental Health Discussion Discord Channel

Come Join an Amazing Group of Mental Health Warriors

James Edgar Skye (The Bipolar Writer) is collaborating with Grounds for Clarity on a Discord Channel called Community Mental Health Discussions. It will be a place where you can come anonymously if needed to discuss the many topics that come with mental illness and mental health. Our goal is to have open-ended discussions that are open 24/7. Myself and Grounds for Clarity will be moderators. Beyond that it is a place where you can share your thoughts in a controlled atmopshere.  

Want to join? Go to www.discord.com

  • Sign up for a discord account.
  • Then add me as a friend – JamesEdgarSkye#4190
  • Send me a message that you are from WordPress, introduce yourself to me in a direct message if I don’t know you, and I will add you to the group!
  • If you have any questions or need help simply reach out
  • Or email me @ jamesedgarskye22@gmail.com

Here is the introduction to our discord:

Welcome to the first of its kind Discord community in which our goal is to provide a safe, anonymous, immersive, and experiential learning experience into mental health discussion. 

We will provide a safe, anonymous, immersive and experiential learning experience into mental health discussion by sharing our personal stories. Here, we value transparency, your story, your authenticity…. in a place where we accept everyone’s point of view.

And what that means is, we may not always agree with one another and we believe within our community safely challenging one another’s perspectives is the key to collaborative discussion. 

We strongly desire for everyone to speak from the lens with which they view life including but not limited to: 

  • Politics
  • Religion/ Deity
  • Sexual orientation
  • Socioeconomic status
  • Ethnicity
  • Racial make-up
  • Education
  • Culture
  • Physical/ Mental/ Social/ Emotional/ Environmental/ Spiritual factors
  • Lifestyle
  • Age (Group is reserved for 18 years and up)
  • Mother tongue
  • Professional/ Role in society
  • Taste of music
  • Sense of humour
  • Criminal record
  • Sports affiliation
  • Military background

All inclusive in a respectful way is what we strive to achieve at this Discord channel.

Discord Moderators can be personally messaged if you wish to voice a concern. However, we strongly encourage open discussion during “stuck” times in conversation in order to foster mutual respect. 
The right to delete comments, ban individuals and block chat members is reserved to Discord Moderators as follows:

James Edgar Skye
Grounds For Clarity 

If you have any questions please contact me or leave comments below. This separate from our weekly Saturday discussions that we will be hosting on Zoom.

Always Keep Fighting

Photo by Rad Pozniakov on Unsplash

Crazy Cab

I remember vividly that summer I’ve spent in the hospital. That was the first time I was treated with a proper medication that brought me recovery in the end. It was the largest hospital in the country, and it had pavilions. Everyone called my pavillion “The Sheraton” because it was for “elite mad people”. It wasn’t really, but it was for those who had the best odds but also for some filthy rich despite our health care being public. Sad. Behind The Sheraton, there was a reminder of the history of mad people’s asylums, a place for the homeless. This was the first asylum in the country, namely.

Anyway, every day, from five to six, we had mandatory socialising in the living room. On Fridays it was Bingo. I hated it, to be honest, and a few other younger people were cracking jokes about it.  We would collect the money from everyone to buy prizes in the convenience store nearby. However, people got bored with food. So, at some point, my few years older acquaintance made a suggestion to buy some items in a store with all sorts of shiny, cheap garbage, for laughs. It was two bus stops away, so we needed exit permission for an hour, and we got those papers.

When I say we, I mean the lady I mentioned, married with two kids, one already in uni, the ex-nurse I’ll call Rose as that is the translation of her name from Croatian, one guy that was neglected as a child and seemed as if his intelligence was below average, but that was hardly the case, he had wit, he could draw, but he lived in extreme poverty making some cash by drawing tattoos. And there was I.

We spent too much time shopping, and at some point, we realised we won’t get back on time by bus—no way with all that stuff. Back then taxi was cheap in Zagreb, so I suggested getting a ride. The neglected guy was excited about it as he has never been in a cab. So we made a call and got our ride in five minutes.

I sat in the front. “Where to?” the driver asked. I told the name of the hospital and also asked to take us straight to the pavilion as we were in a hurry. I felt he was uncomfortable. Still, with all these stuff at our hands, we seemed more as if we were visiting someone in the madhouse. I believe that thought made him relax for a second. But then our first time in the taxi guy kicked in. He told him we bought gifts for the Bingo in the madhouse and that only our pavillion has such activities. He also told him not to worry because we have exit permissions from the ward, and we can show it to him. Yup. The lady, roughly my age with two kids, saw his expression in the mirror and said Rose is a nurse. Rose was almost sixty, but she enjoyed the confusion. The driver asked: “So you are accompanying them?” Rose said: “I am a nurse but I am also mad.”

From that moment on he just shut up. Complete silence. When we got to the door of the pavillion he couldn’t wait till we exit the car. He wanted to drive away without money. I barely made him take my cash.

So there you go, stigma in a nutshell. Don’t crack jokes about being mad, it scares people.

Thirty.

30. Thirty. The big 3-0. I want to mark this time. (peep that pic of me celebrating graduation in late May)

If you would have asked 20 year old me what the next 10 years held…she would have thought that it sounded scary and wonderful, but it could never be her. She blamed everyone for her problems. She was endlessly in love with Joseph Anthony but She was months away from the hardest break up she had faced. She was wonderfully oblivious that her life was about to change courses in a big way. She didn’t really have a lot of close friends outside of Joe. Hannah was dating David and you all didn’t really get along with David. She had a less than ideal relationship with her family and believed that it was beyond repair. There were a lot of questions about where my life would lead me. She was also very secure with herself. She of course thought she could improve in her exercise and diet, but she had confidence and it was obvious. She had no idea that these fleeting, endorphin filled time was mostly a product of her bipolar.

 

This didn’t seem like a big deal until I thought of how fast it went by. How quickly 30 years of my life happened. What have I accomplished?

 

I am well established in my career. I have been in the health care field for 10 years.

I got my master’s degree.

I moved to Texas and back.

I have a pet kitty that makes my days better (You count your kids right?)

I received my diagnosis of Bipolar disorder and started treating it.

I repaired many relationships that I had broken.

I have moved countless times, and it has allowed me experience more than one small bubble in Arizona.

I bought the newest car I have ever owned this year.

I made the big decision to start fertility treatments and become a single mother by choice.

I have realized that it isn’t a relationship I fear, it is that I wouldn’t be accepted or understood. I am asexual.

I have made peace with the fact that I will most likely have my mom living with me for the rest of her life. I am truly okay with it.

 

30-year-old me is on a camping trip in the future. This is 29 years and 359 day old me. Present me is sitting in my room. She is in Mesa and live in a crappy one-bedroom mobile home with mom. That is right, you now care for your mom. Mostly financially because she can’t work but is still independent.  She sleeps in a recliner because you haven’t been able to afford the lift bed she needs. We just got approved for the apartment we are moving to. You prefer to rent an apartment over owning a home and having all the responsibilities or renting a home and having to landscape. This apartment is a dream. You have always looked at the high-end apartments as something you dream of living in. You dreamt of living in a beautiful apartment that looks like a model home. You love the idea of living in a really nice place and decorating it so that you are proud of it.

You love living with your mom. You rarely argue, and she holds you accountable on your self -improvement.

You packed up your shit, quit your job, and drove to Texas where you lived with your dad and Nicole for a year. Much needed. Super impulsive.

Things are rocky with your sister right now. She is following your footsteps and headed down an emotionally destructive path. That is a scary thought seeing as how you went without a diagnosis for your bipolar until you were 25. You have had a couple of relationships that fizzled out. It has been 7 years since your last one. It only feels like an embarrassment to say that when you imagine other people’s reactions. You are oddly okay with this. You have spent the last 7 years working on yourself, nurturing your mental health and mending relationships. You reconnected with Joseph. He turned into a real bar fly when you two hung out together. I do mean hook up if you are wondering. Turns out he had an ex-girlfriend living in the same house. You still love him, and you still think he is selfish and inconsiderate. He has gotten weirder and less mature if that is possible. He loves to wear leggings and outlandish attention drawing outfits and attend raves. He did meet a girl last year. They are expecting a boy next month. You don’t know that Joe has grown up, you think he just found someone to act like a kid with. She has a son in high school….don’t know if that was a teen pregnancy or she is that much older than us.

Hannah is still your true friend. She has changed A TON. She stands up for herself, has really matured career wise and is making more than you! She still feels like she doesn’t know what she is doing with her life. She is living it. She needs to look around. She is still letting pretty boys walk all over her. You constantly build her up and she is so critical of herself and her appearance. She got a boob job that she hates…and botox! As long as it is safe and makes her happy, I will never judge her.

You made the decision that you would start fertility treatments and become a single mother by choice. It is a long and expensive process, but you want it badly. Your mom and grandmother both had issues and could not have any kids after 30. Your aunt Cherril has cervical cancer. She isn’t doing well either. She has decided to not have any kind of treatments and doesn’t even want to take pain medication.

You write. You write in notebooks, on the back of paper plates, you have a blog, you bounce around on your ideas and just end up writing them all in a jumbled mess.

You lost your confidence and have gained at least 100 lbs. But your confidence was gone long before the weight came. After Sean, you were down. You were approaching the BPD diagnosis, but this sent you on a journey that you can credit your life to.

You started gaining weight and staying home. You went to the doctor for weight loss and then disclosed how you were really feeling, and she referred you to a specialist. Between the sadness and the weight gain, you felt ashamed. You stopped going out and packed on more weight. You are hyper aware of those around you. Careful never to agitate or inconvenience anyone. You have actually become pretty boring. You rarely show emotion and are too concerned about other’s opinions to be the silly person you were.

 

You hope that your next 10 years bring more joy, revelations about yourself, dreams come to fruition. You hope to overcome your biggest obstacle. Yourself.

In the next 10 years, you will have a baby. You will do two rounds of IUI before you get pregnant. You will become more confident in your work. You will increase dramatically in your salary as you are beginning to really establish yourself. You will become more involved in politics and religion…after all the wise Ruth Bader Ginsburg said, “Women belong in all the places where decisions are being made.”. You will continue learning and educating yourself through reading and may even entertain the idea of a doctorate. You will most likely lose your grandparents. That is going to be the kick in the stomach of the decade. I hope you are somewhat graceful in your grief. I doubt this though. You will most likely have some issues in managing medications and potentially start being reckless at this time. I hope you come back here and remind yourself of how far you have come and how many people go through this.

My first 30 years have been challenging to say the least. I was dealt a tough hand and it didn’t help that I was manic for most of it. I have made strides in my mental health that have definitely rippled into the rest of my life. I am happy. Genuinely happy. I have you fine people to thank for some of that.

 

It’s Time The Bipolar Writer Talks to Men About Men’s Mental Health

Photo by Daniel Brubaker on Unsplash

I have something that has been on my mind for a while. I have hosted two “Community Mental health Discussions” on Zoom, alongside a fellow blogger. I am a moderator for a discord chat with the same name. One glaring thing has become clear during these chats. None of the bloggers or mental illness sufferers that are men have expressed interest in becoming a part of the conversation. I ask myself, why is this? Guys we have to have a talk.

“Men’s mental health and mental illness” discussions should not be a separate thing. Still, it’s becoming clear that either I am doing something wrong and not being inclusive to all members of the mental illness community . Or that guys in the mental illness community would rather sit behind the scenes. For me, I think it’s the latter, but that defeats the purpose of why the community together can end the stigma surrounding mental illness.

I get it to some degree. “We’re guys we are supposed to be tough.” Hell, I have been the type of guy that said that guys just don’t do mental health. A common sentiment, but I decided the folly of that way of thinking. I now come from the school of thought of being authentic in what I write. I want to implore guys to become a part of the conversation.

Photo by Nathan McDine on Unsplash

I love the idea of this picture because it often said that “boys don’t get sad.” That is where things tend to go. There is this macho attitude that guys don’t cry, and I am here to say that is not true.

Mental illness is this thing that can control you. As someone who deals with Bipolar disorder, I deal with the extreme levels of depression and mania. I cried the night that of my first suicide. I cried when I lost my mom. I have been in such a bad state of depression that I cried about the mess that was my life. It was liberating. It comes to the eventual next step, and we need to talk about why this idea has become the norm of guys don’t cry.

What I seek is to start a dialogue here within the confines of this blog post. I have and always be authentic when it comes to this blog. I want to bring light to men’s mental health because it’s important to me as an advocate. What I am seeing is that men are not willing to be a part of the conversation.

I am hoping that this blog post will ruffle some feathers and that men will call me out and say I am wrong. Challenge me on what I am seeing! That will be the perfect thing. I want to see what men think about what I have said because we have to end the stereotypes that come with men’s mental health. Let us have a real conversation!

If you would like to join my “Community Mental health Discussions” Zoom meeting then please reach out guys to let your voice be heard. I also open it to all members of the mental illness community. The Zoom meeting is this Saturday at 2pm.

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

The Delusional Drug

Me: “They’re sending me messages, Mum. I swear, they’re sending me messages.”

Mum: “Who are sending you messages? What do you mean?”

Me: “I don’t know who, but I just know that they’re sending me messages.”

I was petrified, confused and exhausted.

I had just turned 19 when I first noticed something wasn’t right. It didn’t seem tangible. It wasn’t like anything I had ever experienced before. My brain was completely muddled and I felt like I was at a loose end. It was December 2012, and I was preparing to travel and volunteer for five months in Tanzania, East Africa. I had just started taking one of the more controversial, but very effective anti-malarials – Mefloquine, also known as Lariam. My Mum was cautious to start me on this medication due to the adverse effects my Dad and brother had experienced in the past. However, because it was taken on a weekly basis, it seemed the most logical choice.

I was experiencing symptoms for roughly two weeks before any of us realised that it might be the drug I was taking that was responsible. I started to make unusual connections that would be regarded by a healthy brain as nothing other than very tenuous. I started to believe that my girlfriend’s family were sending me messages through brochures they were leaving at my house. Because of these ‘messages’, I believed that I was a bad person. I was waking up at 4 or 5am, wide awake, with a strong urge to get out of bed and keep packing my bags for travelling. I developed a fixation on this. 

I soon became very low in mood and I vividly remember breaking down in tears in front of my whole family at the dinner table. I was unable to articulate what was causing me so much upset. It was rare for me to cry. I was a rugby player. I was a man. It wasn’t natural for me to show so much emotion, or so I thought. 

Lariam is an antimalarial that is commonly used in the US and British Armies, and it was recently found that many troops had reported adverse side-effects, such as depression and psychosis. These are now well known side-effects of the drug. However, there was no strong family history of depression, and certainly not psychosis on either my mother or father’s side of the family. It was only when I started showing symptoms of paranoia that my mum told me to stop taking the medication immediately.

Soon after I stopped taking the Lariam and switched to an alternative – Doxycycline, my symptoms resolved. My mood returned to normal. My thoughts became clearer. I started to sleep much better. This brief encounter with darkness was over, for now. I flew out to Tanzania to teach English and help on a building project. It was incredible, and forgive the cliché, but I felt enriched from the experience. I came back happier than ever, feeling more independent and mature. I put my moment with darkness to the very back of my mind. It didn’t seem necessary to even comprehend what had happened. It was the drug, that was all. Why should I be concerned about it ever happening again? And then it happened again.

Awaiting my flight to Tanzania