Last week waaaaas BRUTAL. My mind and emotions were no friend to me and I thought many times that I might not make it. I mean, I knew I’d make it still in my skin, heart beating, but I can’t even tell you how difficult it was to not revert to old ways of coping with the monster in my mind when he’s screaming the loudest.
But I made it! I didn’t buy a bottle of wine to quiet my mind. I didn’t hit myself or punch the hard, plastic, impenetrable walls in my shower. I didn’t starve myself. I didn’t even take apart a razor to get at the blades to cut up my arms. But oh man, did I ever want to. The thoughts and urges were relentless, and I got as far as thinking about where I last remember hiding my razors so I could go upstairs and take one apart…. and “where are my sharp sewing scissors so I can pry out the blades?” like I’d done many times in the past. And I must have successfully distracted myself because it went no further than that. I cried a lot last week. A LOT. The stress and the anxieties and the hopelessness was almost too much to bear. I think the crying may have been the distraction a time or two. Just letting it come out and riding the waves of emotion until they found a shore.
I know that I tend to mindlessly allow my thoughts to tell me that I’m failing when I’m at those lowest and darkest points. “I’ve done DBT! I’ve done CBT! I’ve taught myself about ACT! I’ve been in 2 different group psychotherapies, I’ve done the weekly individual therapy with an amazing therapist and I’ve learned so much and I’ve been doing so well. I KNOW how to be mindful. Why can’t I focus and just practice being mindful right now?? Why am I here?? Shouldn’t I be doing better than this?? What If I really CAN’T do it and I NEVER get better. What if I’m kidding myself about having this bright, shiny future that I was so sure I could achieve just last week and all last month? I’m never going to change. I’m never going to change. I’m NEVER going to change!!”
>> Side note: being AWARE of the fact that you’re in emotional distress, and THINKING about WANTING to be mindful, IS mindful. It actually is great progress when learning how to harness the emotions that can overwhelm the best of us. <<
So here I am, on the other side of last week, I realize that I’m NOT going backwards. That I AM doing really quite well. That I CAN defeat the monster and drown the demons that once knew how to swim. I cried my way through last week, and I won. I fucking won.