I plot the telltale signs that I’m losing altitude.
The first thing I note is that my energy levels, instead of being Duracell bunny “on” all day long, are beginning to ebb and flow throughout the day. I’m sleeping through the night, until 7am, instead of getting 3 hours’ sleep. My racing thoughts and rapid-firing synapses are beginning to stutter and slow. I’m updating my secret Instagram account less often.
Denial is pointless: I’m losing my hypomanic superpowers and I feel bereft. After being an unstoppable force for six weeks or more, I don’t care to return to mere mortal status. Normality holds no attraction. I want to be me, squared.
When I look at the woman in the mirror, my eyes are less charitable. I see fine lines, a multitude of imperfections. I had shed weight, but now I can almost feel my metabolism slowing, becoming sluggish. Am I already heavier, or is my perception skewed?
I’ve spoken to good friends before about this. Do I really change that much when I come down to earth? Do I still make them laugh? Do I look different? Do they still like me the same?
The verdict seems to be that the difference is mostly in my own head – which is not to say that I don’t dress, move and behave differently as a result – but you’d probably have to be paying close attention to notice.
Right now, I’m trying hard to postpone the inevitable any way I can. Loud music in my headphones. Alcohol. A crazy, intoxicating mutual infatuation with a boy that hits some of the same endorphin high notes. I have faith that I’m going to weather this involuntary descent okay.
But I still wish I could have held onto my superpowers for a little longer.