Summer is already half over, which is something I am finding hard to believe. It seems like it was just June.
The month of July has had it’s challenges, both financially and mentally, but I have been weathering the storm much better than I would have in the past. I’ve been using my skills. I’ve been keeping myself busy, and I’ve been learning more about myself.
I was talking with L the other evening about some of the challenges I have had in the last few weeks, especially surrounding the constant reevaluation of “Is this a reasonable response? Is this med change? Or is this just an exaggerated reaction due to anyone of my diagnoses?”
Her response showed a tremendous amount of compassion and understanding. I paraphrase, but it was to the effect of “It makes sense that you would question things. your baseline as been off for so long you have no idea where it is.”
She is absolutely correct on this. The fact is, I’ve struggled with Borderline traits since high school. My emotions have always been more volatile than most, and I simply haven’t learned what baseline is exactly, though at 39 years old I’m finally starting to figure it out, and that involves fact-checking on my emotional state, and communication with the person who knows me better than anyone else, my wife.
Though my symptoms of most of my diagnoses are in remission at the moment, mental illness still remains a beast in my mind. I routinely find myself questioning some borderline traits that rear their ugly head.
Thoughts of suicide and self harm, while greatly reduced, still float around in my mind. Thankfully with nowhere near the intensity or the frequency as before.
I don’t have all the answers where it comes to mental health issues. I do know that recovery takes work, and learning yourself. I’ve had to learn my triggers, and my limits. I’ve had to set boundaries, and learn when to push them, and when not to.
Mental illness is a beast that never totally lets go, even when someone is “well”, but with work and skill, it can be dealt with.