Firstly, I have come so far since I last posted on mental health. Half the issues and thought patterns I used to have are no longer an issue and my psychologist is happy with how I am going. I still have a way to go on a few specific issues, but I am happy with who I am and my life right now, which is great.
My daughters and I
On Tuesday, I got back from FinCon12 to a real slap in the face and my world basically ripped out from under me. I could hardly breathe. If this had happened last year, I would have crumpled in a heap and simply given up. Now, I am strong enough to handle this sort of thing. I have a strong support network and the confidence in myself to be able to fight this issue.
Last year I would have most likely crawled into bed and given up on everything. This year, I cried, but was able to talk to some great friends about it and work out a plan of action. It is devastating, but I am not giving up and I know I can handle it.
In my previous post I mentioned I was distancing myself from my in laws. Now I am friends with them all on Facebook again and go to family things. I don’t have animosity towards them anymore and I think telling them about my issues helped things. I am so impressed by so many of them and the things going on in their lives and the changes that have happened in the time I have known them. My in laws are patient and have forgiven me for cutting them off for a time and we get along fine now. They are a very supportive and loving family.
Last year I posted about anger outburst and bouts of depression. I have a lot more control over my emotions now and am able to step back and look at things more logically, instead of so emotionally. I still feel things intensely, but I have so many positives happening in my life now, that when things seem bad, I try and look at in terms of my whole life. Is what is happening now going to matter in a few months/next year etc? What is the best way to handle this to achieve the best outcome? (And the answer to that is not to blow my top! Lol).
I think a few of the big differences or changes I have made in my life which have really helped are:
- A great support network: My family have always been supportive, so I consider myself truly blessed. Since my daughter started preschool, I met some great mums, who are really supportive and I can talk to about anything. It makes a huge difference having people near you, that are there for you. I used to feel very alone here in Sydney, but not anymore.
- Therapy: I go once a fortnight and it has helped a lot. We have just come to a rather crucial point for me and I think in the coming months I will be able to move past a key problem of mine and I am really excited about that. Therapy has helped me recognize when I am spiraling, change my thought patterns and to step back if I need to. I am so glad I found a psychologist I really click with, who is also Christian, so understands that side of things when it comes to my behavior as well. It makes a huge difference.
- Diet and exercise: I am much more conscious of what I eat. I know if I eat junk/chocolate/caffeine for the following days I will be messed up. Energy drinks are the worst thing I can possibly have and I have to really limit any chocolate intake. I make sure I get outside every day and exercise a bit at least. It helps me clear my head and the vitamin D from the sun is known to help with depression.
- Finding myself: I have spent a lot of my life doing what I thought others wanted me to do. Many would find that hard to believe, but there are people in my life whom I desperately wanted to approve of me. Maybe approve isn’t the right word. It’s hard to describe, but I needed them to be proud of me and my life decisions were based on what I thought they wanted. I have come to realize that is a bad way to live and have been changing my life accordingly. It has not been easy, but I have really been focusing on my life and what I want/who I want to be. This has included weight loss and taking better care of myself.
So my life is changing a lot. I no longer feel so much like a borderline and can’t even remember the last time I wanted to self harm or had a real “episode”. I am really happy with my progress this year and know that things will continue to get better, despite how bad some things are in my personal life right now.
So thank you everyone for all your support. Make sure you ask people “R U OK?”