Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Is it considered progress?

As my lovely readers know, I have both Bipolar 2 and Borderline Personality Disorder. Through 23 different medications, hospitalizations, suicide attempts, ECT, therapy, and god knows what else I tried I did eventually make it through to the other side. But what, really, is the other side?

A few things to note. I had my last appointment with my psychiatrist in March of this year. About 3 weeks later I received a letter from his office saying he was terminating care with me and handing my case over to my GP. This is supposedly a good thing. I had been stable for almost a year, and didn't need him anymore. I cried, though. I didn't understand why he didn't tell me in person when I was at my appointment. I don't have a good relationship with my GP, don't really know her, and I had always thought (and he had told me) that my mental health was a challenge, and didn't want to fall down the rabbit hole with someone new who didn't know where I had already been. But alas, it happened. I did go see the GP to give her an intro to me. It was during a bit of a down spell and I wasn't taken seriously at all.

A couple of months ago, as well, I did start cutting again. I was having trouble with my emotions, and didn't feel I had a support network, and didn't know what to do. It's not all smooth sailing, I'm not completely stable - and I never will be. And I've learned that's okay.

Last June I had a psychedelic experience with some plant medicine. It was a beautifully transformative experience for me. I can't really tell you how it's changed me, but I feel like a different person. It's absolutely incredible. I was still seeing my psychiatrist at the time, and I had told him about this and he was completely supportive - talking about how these medicines can help so much with mental health and how they need to be studied more. It was wonderful to have his support.

It took a few weeks to integrate the way my brain was now thinking into every day life, and I wouldn't say it saved me, because without the medication I eventually found, I wouldn't have been stable enough to actually go through with the ceremony.

But over the last year I have a bigger world view perspective. I am able to see my emotions, usually, as something separate from me. I am able to handle them better, and recognize when things are getting out of hand. I am able to be patient with people, and I know I have to ask for what I need - and I do. I don't rely on other people, because I know I am capable. I know I am whole on my own.

My emotions are still extreme, always. It is completely in my nature. They are still overwhelming, and usually rapid, often don't make complete sense. I still talk down to myself a lot, still deal with insecurity, I'm still my own worst critic, and I know I am prone to both depression and manie (I've experienced both in the last 3 months). I know I need more reassurance than most people. But the difference now is I am aware of my own processes and how to incorporate them in a way that is not nearly as debilitating as it used to be.

Craftymama says it's inspiring how far I've come. I feel humbled by that.

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