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Merrily Preston
By Merrily Preston
Posted on Apr 06,2009
Filed Under Personal Development , Opinions,

Dear Merrily,

I had a mania spike week before last.  At first I always think - wow, I feel great, maybe the new dosage is working.  (I am bi-polar.)  Suddenly my mind is clear.  Like being let out of a stuffy box.  I stood on the path in the park and cried.  A few hours later I assaulted a school bus...on foot.  It had dared to park in my spot in front of my house.  I won't go into the hairy details.  I put myself on house arrest for two days after that.  It had been so long since I'd been anything but depressed that I didn't see this coming.  Doctor had raised the dosage to get me out of the depression.  I should have known feeling that good isn't allowed.  If there was a drug that could make you feel that good, without the bang at the end, I would take it.

I am embarrassed to admit that I did this.

Dear Embarrassed,

Feeling good is allowed.  But, it seems that you would have to lower the dosage before you were aware of feeling great.  So difficult, but don’t give up on the fine-tuning.

So, you assaulted a school bus and you are embarrassed.  
When our behavior is clear out of proportion with a situation, we need to sit quietly with the simple question:  why did I assault the school bus?  What really happened?

The bus, “daring to park in your spot in front of your house,” triggered survival behavior.  As you sit with your question, look for an inner child who was invaded and not capable of fighting back.  Did the child step up to protect itself and express anger now because it could?   

Since no real harm was done and you are not in jail, your assault – an attempt to set a boundary - may have been a sign of healing.    

If you allow lots of kindness around this for yourself and the inner child, possibly the next time your spot is taken, your behavior will be more gentle and not result in a two-day house arrest.  

I am interested to hear how you handle your next invasion.

Merrily Preston is an Intentional Life Facilitator, who lives in Woodbridge. Her column is exclusive to Local Kicks in Alexandria, VA. Email questions to, or use online form at

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