Let me tell you what I know about having an episode or how a breakdown begins... at least from my experience.
You see, it's not how you'd think, and it's not like what you see on TV.
They start small, for one... a lot smaller than you could imagine. It's like the smallest of bad moods just sticks... like cobwebs. You could be having a fine day, maybe even what looks like it could be a great day, and then! Something happens. Or someone says something. Instantly you take offence, or it makes you sad, or just.. meh!... and you start to question everything.
You wonder, did someone just trip me... or merely take off the rose colored glasses??? Was I the fool or the fooled??
Then you wonder who you were kidding anyway, and you look around and see - or think you see - everyone looking at you as if in pity, or jeering at you... or looking disgusted. And it builds - all the negative thoughts, all the sadness - it just grows... unless you stop it, and you can. It's not easy, might take a herculean effort, but you can. not easy, might take a herculean effort, but you can.
If I could put it to music, it would start small. Subito piano... A small questioning melody... a piccolo asking, "Why???" Then, new sounds would add on, perhaps a blaring horn, something mean and rattle-y, or a wailing violin somewhere in the background. All slightly discordant, just ever so slightly... off. But always building.
The kettle drums only ever come in after the crescendo, if it actually gets to that point and the music is allowed to build up that much. It just doesn't always get there and the kettle drums are such a nuisance to bring along, anyway. I mean, they're kind of cumbersome.
The first time I heard Arvo Pärt's Tabula Rasa, I thought, here is a man who gets it! He knows. That the ballet company was using it for a dance piece was really quite great for me, making dance class even more therapeutic. Here, I could channel allllll of that... and just release it; music come to life, a manifestation of my emotions and moods. Then you just... let it all go
The music builds and diminishes, whimpers then wails, slows down... to speed up - all at its own pace.
The ongoing cycle makes it often feel like it's going to continue forever, makes it difficult for one to see anything outside of that loop. Oh, it might get better... but that turn will come 'round again, and then!... it's all falling down.
The thought makes it difficult to get out of the loop, makes it difficult to stop the spiral down towards the depths of despair. It hurts! ... and it hurts oh-so-much. It hurts because you've been here before, and you know it'll come again... and you really, really, really hate it here.
Which is the reality?, you wonder. Am I delusional in thinking that it could ever be any better - is actually better at times? Or is this actually it?
So you try to reach out, and maybe you do... but somehow it's wrong and they don't understand, or you say it sharply, or... really you didn't mean it - you're just wanting some help... and... you've failed. And you don't know how to say you're sorry and you don't know how to take it all back because really all that you needed was some understanding, the human touch and you kinda botched it.
All you'd really like to say now is, help me, but you don't seem to know how.
You wonder, What do I do now?
All of this has been going on in your head this whole time... and nothing much has really happened, not that anyone can see. If you tried to explain it to anyone, they wouldn't exactly know - or get - how you went from 0 to 100 in 1 second flat. It's miniscule, but it's there... and it's big... HUGE!
And that's where you are.
You can't do that on television, you can't show how it all builds up from nothing...