I, Elizabeth, is the personal recounting of a post depression, southern "rural poor" woman's journey through the onset, flowering, and moderation of symptoms of bipolar illness. Her "falling down" occurred in 1965, although symptoms had appeared much earlier. The first twenty years were an unbearable sojourn in deepest depression, medications at that time being ineffective. The latter years have seen more balance of mood, but shifts continue, and into rapid cycling, mania being now more often seen; the ever hound of depersonalization has become more diffused and constant, if less threatening through habituation.
Beautiful physically, intelligent, creative (beauty being her most enduring antidote) and willful, Elizabeth was able to finish her education, at least through graduate studies at the master's level in the areas of English literature and psychology. She managed a long career in teaching at the college level, chairing her department more than twenty years; she was married, divorced, and re-married, to be widowed fifteen years ago. The schirmishes of life of will against circumstance are recorded, with some measure of content in the last ten years, years spent in retirement alone, with hope and thanksgivings beside regret, looking toward conclusion: altogether a bitter-sweet rapture, the book a weaving of bipolar though throughout the chronicle of her life.
Elizabeth spends her hours painting, sculpting, doing some ceramics, with music, flowers, reading and writing, poetry her preferred genre. She enjoys a plethora of friends with entertaining when her mood is good, of course, requires her time alone, and ponders always the cost of the wealth that is hers.