In 2015, I was diagnosed with bipolar type 2 and social anxiety disorder. Since the diagnosis, I have struggled to keep a job, to keep friends and to have a life. I suffer from hypersomnia too, where I find myself sleeping for 12+ hours when I can, just to feel normal. I've been struggling with my moods since I was 11; I'm now almost 28. I couldn't get diagnosed earlier due to my moods being just as erratic as teenagers.
I am a wild, free spirit. I move countries more than I change my socks, and I chase the sun, the snowfall, and amazing opportunities. Yet for years now, people have been telling me, ‘Charmaine, you are just running away’. Firstly – travelling and my way of life is not ‘running away’, in fact, travelling helps me feel whole. People can be selfish; they can tell you that you are ‘running’ because they actually want you physically in their lives, next to them.