Oh by golly have a holy jolly Christmas this year.

Every year I need to add the word folly to that beautiful and happy Christmas song.

Oh by golly I’ll have a folly jolly Christmas this year.

I love Christmas and everything about it.

First of all, I love baking all of the traditional yummy homemade food that goes along with the lovely CHRISTmas Holiday starting with my large variety of homemade Christmas cookies making sure I bake my children’s favorite recipes including mine too, of course.

I love making food on Christmas Eve and baking a large Christmas dinner with everything including ham, cheesy potatoes, homemade pies and more. On Christmas morning I must bake my homemade braided cream cheese filled and cinnamon and sugar filled sweet roll bread from scratch with vanilla glaze covering and flowing off the top of the warm fresh bread, so my children can wake up to the wonderful aroma and tastes of fresh sweet roll bread on Christmas morning.

We open our gifts on Christmas Eve and I still must fill my children’s Christmas stockings with chocolate candy and treats from Santa Claus even though they are young adults now. This is not just a want for me, but I have to do all of these things perfectly. It makes me happy.

Even if I cant afford it and have to pay for many overdraft fees in my checking account, I have to make my Christmas magical and perfect for my children and I. My children do not expect these things, it is just me really. I HAVE to do it. It makes me happy.

Last night I impulsively went shopping at Target and had to, I mean had to buy this expensive gift for my son right then and now. There was no choice. It was the gift I was planning on buying for him anyway, but it would have been better for me and my bank account to wait a few days when I had the money in my checking account. That would have made sense, but I didn’t want to wait.

Another one of the many unfortunate symptoms of Bipolar Disorder is impulsivity, which I have tried to control and have learned to control better over the many years since my diagnosis about twenty years ago. However, sometimes the ferocious gravity like pull inside my brain is so strong and unbearable that I lose to the power of the force of my impulsive behavior. The impulsive beast inside my bipolar brain is sometimes too much for me to negate especially at Christmas time.

My impulsivity is back and showed up last night with its unwelcome and unfriendly strong force and pull. I am now dealing with the consequences of my impulsive Christmas spending spree last night and feeling the regret of my behavior and wondering why I couldn’t have just waited a few more days to buy some of my purchases.

As strange and wrong as it may sound to some of you. I felt like I had no control and I HAD to do it. The pull, force, desire and need was just so strong as if I had no choice, feeling like I was an addict of some kind at that moment and time.

Impulsivity can be very severe for people with bipolar disorder. Mine seems to be more of a seasonal and situational impulsive behavior. At least that is somewhat better as it does not occur too often, but still it should not happen at all and I wish I could somehow get that huge urge and force to stop inside my bipolar brain.

Impulsivity is a predisposition toward rapid, unplanned reactions to internal and external stimuli without regard to the negative consequences of future behavior.

In other words a person acts or speaks with out thinking or caring about the consequences.

Four major dimensions of impulsivity are:

  1. Urgency.  You want something now, not later, so you act rashly, giving in to your desire to avoid the negative feelings associated with resisting what you want.
  2. Lack of Premeditation.  You don’t think about the future carefully, or at all and you act before you plan.
  3. Lack of Perseverance.  You act without discipline and have poor follow through, getting bored fast and giving up easily.
  4. Sensation Seeking.  You crave excitement and have in intense need for the positive feelings associated with risky actions. You act without regard to consequences.

Like Bipolar Disorder, it is suspected that bipolar impulsivity is caused by brain chemistry. Communication in the brain can become unstable and out of control. In a high drive to numb the pain of low self-esteem and other negative feelings and symptoms of bipolar disorder, impulsivity becomes a type of self-medication to cope with the underlying issues and mood swings.

I was very happy last spending and pretending like I had the money not thinking of my future consequences. However, now I sit here this morning regretting my behavior and wishing I would have waited to spend my money. I know it is too late and what is done is done. I need to just accept my impulsive behavior from last night knowing that I cannot change it now.

The word folly means having a lack of good sense and I sure lacked having some good sense last night.

I understand the folly of my impulsive spending behavior and am suffering the consequences by feeling regret and wishing I would have waited.

However, I did have fun buying the expensive gift for my son last night. I love him so much. I love the gift and am happy I bought it for him.

This is still impulsive thinking as I could have postponed my happiness and waited a few days. Then I would have saved about $100 worth of overdraft fees that are now shouting angrily at me in my checking account permanently unable to be reversed. Big huge oops! I just threw away $100 for no reason other then my stupidity of impulsivity.

Oh bother and…

Oh by golly…. I will have a folly jolly Christmas again this year…. and 

Oh by golly have a holly jolly CHRISTmas this year.

Ho! Ho! Ho! and Hope! Hope! Hope! Merry CHRISTmas everyone!!!

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