I realized after my diagnosis four years ago that having bipolar disorder does not define who I am as a person. For close to three decades, I battled an unknown adversary, believing I was just sinning because I wasn’t choosing happiness. The story is composed of trials from my life, including a turbulent relationship; hopelessness and thoughts of suicide; the abandonment of my Olympic dream; the death of a son in my arms from a genetic disorder; the early end to my teaching career; and the suicide of my nephew. I can now see how my undiagnosed bipolar disorder affected my decision-making ability, my relationships, my joy, and the goals I once had for my life. It is a story of triumph in the face of adversity, one that tells how God has given me a meaningful life even though things haven’t turned out how I originally envisioned.
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