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“This pandemic has brought me up against myself, my trauma, and embracing the reality of a Bipolar diagnosis in ways I haven’t before. Being isolated in quarantine, I came to know myself better than ever before. The challenges of depression, the explosive possibilities and creativity that come with hypomania, the uncertainties that accompany a chronic condition that’s with you for life. But most of all, I realised the wall I was hitting up against was not imposed from the outside, it came from myself, from accepting a stigma, and holding back in being my full self for fear of being seen. The true polarities— the ones holding me back, I realised—were my true self, and my timid self. I choose now to speak out about my diagnosis, show pride in my strengths, and challenge the fear of vulnerability and societal stigma that comes with it.”

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