I was just thinking about this the other day.
I went through a mania that lasted several days (10ish). It was the first one that I have gone through since being diagnosed, so it was the first one that I was aware of what it was while it was happening. (Weird) I think that it was actually worse than normal just because I knew what the symptoms were supposed to be, so I fulfilled them subconsciously.
After that, I fell into a depression. I think that it was the lack of sleep in the mania that triggered the depression. Now that I have had a bit more sleep and a good cry, I feel a bit better. Not the high that I had before (which was getting distracting anyway- but I got a lot done), but not the crushing depths that I would normally have.
I don't know, I know that social situations that usually scare other people (meeting strangers, public speaking) energize me. The problem is that the higher I go in the situation, the lower I go afterward.
I still haven't figured out what "normal" is supposed to be. Where is that? How do I keep it?
(All this is on meds for the last 6 weeks. Both mood stabilizer and antidepressants.)