Crazy for Life

Escapades of a bipolar princess.

Prt 2: Mental Illness & My Happy (?) Hypersexuality

Part 2: Psych ward escape, a cute guy & a nude beach. What could be better?

This is part two of what happens when you escape from the psych ward with the cute guy from two doors down. Read part one here.

Nick (that’s the cute guy, the cute NAKED guy – just to get you up to speed) and I are tucked away on a secluded nude beach somewhere in West Vancouver.

Nick, in all his naked glory, is ignoring my come hither to batting of my eyelashes; instead he starts swimming for a cluster of jutting rocks. Abandoned on the shoreline, in a state of rising mania and hypersexuality, I throw caution, jump out of my swimsuit and follow! And the water , the water is sooooo...goddamned COLD! But still I dive, sink into the clear salty water. Water glistens on my skin, my chest, my thighs lay bare to the sun and I float, bobbing in the briny ocean.

We’re not only here to skinny dip, but to camp, overnight. We have no sleeping bags, no sunscreen, only wet towels and a tarp. We have Mr. Peanut peanuts, one remaining bottle of water but lots of beer. Planning and preparation are not part of the manic skill set.

As the sun fixes pink hues on the water and the trees, we wriggle into toasty clothes, crawl under the tarp, and fall asleep in each other’s arms. For some reason we don’t have sex.

Sunday morning: time to go back. We’re achy but relaxed with only mild hangovers. We saunter back to his car holding hands. Before returning to the psych ward, Nick pulls up to an elegant white apartment building in West Vancouver. He gets out, “Hang on”, he says and slams the door, the car still running. 5 minutes later, he hops back in. "All set." and he guns the engine.

 On Monday morning in group (insider’s lingo for group therapy) we talk about our weekends, our “leisure activities”. Nick and I have kept our stories straight, so no one is the wiser. And for three more weeks we make out behind abandoned ambulances while paramedics take smoke breaks. We skulk onto the soccer field beside Emergency and neck under the evergreens.

Then an elephant grey morning: Nick dressed in scrubby jeans and a ratty T-shirt (why does dirt make a man so sexy?) sits by me in the common room. I strangling a pen, writing some terribly tragic poetry.

He nudges me, “I’m being discharged this afternoon.”

“Oh.” I burp out.

“They say I’m stable.” He looks away.

“Makes you sound like a barnyard.”

“Hey,” Nick’s eyes search for mine, “Come on – it’s not that bad. You’ll be out soon too.”

“I know.” I pout, scrunch my forehead and wiggle my foot.

“Anyway this is for you.” He extends his right arm and jiggles his fist - as if it has a mind of its own.

I level a look at him but can't hide my smile. I peel away each finger one at a time. On his palm: a delicate necklace made of tiny pearls. It's his grandmother’s. “Oh,” Nick assures me, “but she's dead and I don't wear jewelry.” We both laugh. They aren't real pearls. But it is a real gift.

Another two days and I am released! And I’m back at home in my attic suite. I bounce to the phone to call Nick. I haven’t been this excited since the head nurse said we could order Pizza Hut Pizza instead of having the Friday night rehab cooking class. I dial and I hold my breath.

And then...on the other end...“Hello?” But...wait, it's a woman's voice; an attractive sultry women's voice.

“Uh, yeah,” I croak, “is Nick around?”

“Who is this?” This, THIS...woman asks.

“Uh, Victoria...from the psych ward.” What else can I say?

“Who's this?” I volley back.

“Uh, his girlfriend. From his relationship!”

And before I can spit out my defense and damnations: “He told me about you…how you seduced him. Stalked him – stole his grandmother’s necklace– you, you psycho! Don’t. Call here again. Ever.” Dial tone. And my Psych ward Prince Charming is gone.

I don’t call, wouldn’t drop by and never wear the necklace. Instead I fall into a plum blue blackness from late summer through and into winter… it is excruciating. This depression? Not even the benefit of sadness. Then on the darkest, shortest day of December… I meet Mu at a holiday party. Mu – not like the cow, but MU. M. U. Anyway: he’s an artist, carpenter and spiritual seeker. He’s freakishly tall, remarkably lean and incredibly good looking. He’s also 16 years older than me and extremely commitment phobic. He’s perfect!

Thanks for reading. For part 3 click here.

 © 2013 Victoria Maxwell

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Victoria Maxwell is a playwright, actor, and lecturer on her 'lived' experiences of bipolar disorder, anxiety, psychosis and recovery.


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