Some Effects of Bipolar

My awareness and experience of sounds in general and music in particular were intense. Individual notes from a horn, an oboe, or a cell became exquisitely poignant. I heard each note alone, all notes together, and then each and all with piercing beauty and clarity. I felt as though I were standing in the orchestra pit; soon the intensity and sadness of classical music became unbearable for me. I became impatient with the pace, as well as overwhelmed by the emotion. I switched abruptly to rock music, pulled out my Rolling Stones albums, and played them as loud as possible. I went from cut to cut, album to album, matching mood to music, music to mood. Soon my rooms were further strewn with records, tapes, and album jackets as I went on my way in search of the perfect sound. The chaos in my mind began to mirror the chaos of my rooms; I could no longer process what I was hearing; I became confused, scared and disoriented. I could not listen for more than a few minutes to any particular piece of music. My behavior was frenetic, and my mind more so.

  • Pg. 79, An Unquiet Mind, ISBN – 978-0-679-76330-7, Kay Redfield Jamison
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