A chance visit from Andre North's mother and her high school sweetheart sends the young bipolar patient on a rambling streak through the history of his bipolar illness in this autobiographical odyssey of mania and depression.
The first memories stirred up include Andre's untimely birth to a drunk and a depressive in front of an audience of doctors who hardly seem to care that the young child is dying from oxygen deprivation. Then Andre grows up in the face of drunken parties and suicide attempts, living face-to-face with the poisonous lives of parents gone wrong.
Enter bipolar disorder. Now a young man, Andre winds up at university, writing furiously while in the throes of inspiration until he meets the teaching assistant who tricks him into going to the mental hospital. Stuck behind shatter-proof glass for three months, Andre finally meets his match: the dreaded lithium. All it takes is one salty pill to transform the vibrant Adonis into a tranquilized zombie. Determined to get his life and mind back, Andre travels cross-country to face the real demon lurking behind his illness - the stigma of manic depression itself.
A Personal Note from the Author:
This memoir blends the first 10 years of my experiences with bipolar disorder following the initial diagnosis in 1998 with a personal story of self-discovery and family revelation. I know the emotions around facing a diagnosis of mental illness are sometimes more challenging than learning that you have a fatal disease. I used to torture myself with questions like, "What have I done bring this down upon myself?" I often felt like crying when I saw what I perceived to be normal, healthy people living out their daily lives.
That's why I've released this memoir. It was written during an actual manic episode and has all the tell-tale signs of the disorder in its diction and grammar. I know that listening to this audiobook will help heal the pain, ease the frustration, and give hope to those diagnosed with this illness that none of us are alone and we all have a tale to tell.