“Learn to be thankful for what you already have, while you pursue all that you want.”
Every now and then I like to just sit down and think about what good there is in my life. Suffering with BPD can make it hard for me to see the good in things because I either see things as really good or really bad – no in between. There are less moments of “really good” than “really bad”, meaning it’s easy for me to get depressed because of it.
I’ve written about nature on my blog before, because it’s one of the things that I’ve loved since I was very little. I studied Floristry at college because of my love for flowers and how pretty they are. It’s extremely helpful to just sit outside and breathe, especially if I’m angry or upset. I love the feeling of cold air on my face and smelling the flowers. There are so many beautiful things about nature which I am happy I am able to see, feel and smell.
By family I mean immediate family, my mum, my dad and my brother. Even though we don’t always get along, they have supported me from the beginning to the end in the best way that they could. There aren’t any right or wrong answers when supporting family. It can be easy to forget who they are and what they mean to you when you’re in an argument or upset. I wish that I could give back to my family what they’ve given to me, but for now I will just realise and accept how grateful I am for them.
This one is an obvious one, but for me it means something slightly different this year than it did last year. I feel as though right now I am in a good state of mind to be able to list the very few TRUE friends that I have. Whereas, last year, I couldn’t really tell you. I also have the most amazing boyfriend who genuinely has been through hell and back alongside me. There are so many people in the world without friends, without love and without kindness. I’m so grateful that I’m not one of them anymore.
Technology is a controversial subject between generations. Some see it as the pinnacle of the modern future and some see it as ruining human interaction forever. For me, my boyfriend lives in America, so technology is really the only way we can talk to each other. If it weren’t for the internet and technology I never would’ve met most of my friends or been able to keep in touch with them. I would be lonely and sad if it weren’t for technology, especially as my life started off playing video games, etc. There are bad sides to technology, and even I will admit that I need to work on being involved in more human interaction. However, it has also given me the opportunity to do things that I never thought I would do. Such as this blog!
It’s kind of weird to hear someone with a ‘severe’ mental illness talk about how they’re grateful for their brain. I think that the idea is that mentally ill people MUST hate how they turned out and what’s happened to them. Of course I dislike the fact I’m ill, it’s ruined so many things for me, and I definitely used to be a lot angrier at that fact last year. This year I’m more focused on being thankful for what I do have rather than what I don’t have. I’m thankful that my brain is averagely capable of being intellectual. Mainly that it may be ill, but at least it’s strong. I haven’t given up or gone anywhere yet, so my brain must be the strongest thing on the planet.
It’s been difficult for me in the past to distinguish the difference between love and just complete obsession. Like I said earlier, I see things in an extreme black and white, meaning it’s difficult for me to understand the middle ground. If someone says that they love me, I’ll take that as 100% rather than what they meant. I’ve found in the past people say that they love you when really they’re just confused.
The bad thing for me is that I can’t understand that they were confused or that they didn’t mean it, so it causes more distress for me in the long term. I’m grateful that right now I have a love which I truly believe is real and genuine, and I don’t see it leaving any time soon. I’m able to put my trust into this love and understand it fully without constantly worrying it’ll leave or be taken away.
This year, music has really helped me to be able to understand myself more. It sounds really cliche, but when you
have a personality disorder it’s different. I find it hard to express myself correctly in a way that makes sense to other people, so if I find a song that explains it, that’s amazing. Also, music is a great way to keep me company when I feel lonely or alone. It fills the empty space around you and makes you feel a lot less desolate. I’m lucky that I’m into quite a lot of different genres as well, meaning I can fit my music to my mood pretty easily.
Whether it’s my own or someone else’s, whenever I hear laughter it makes me so happy. Even on a day where I feel my worst, my boyfriend can somehow always make me laugh. If it’s not him, it’s one of my best friends. If I laugh once, a true laugh, in a day then I consider it an accomplishment. From never laughing at all and feeling so numb I found nothing funny – to laughing everyday? I’ll be grateful for that. Laughter really is the best medicine, and I’ve realised as soon as I laugh once, the rest of the day is easier.
I’m very lucky in the sense that even though my parents never physically taught me my morals (sitting me down and drilling them into me), whenever something would happen they would teach me the ‘right’ way to handle it. I put that in quotations because obviously the right way is different for everyone. The right way for me is to be kind, open minded, and accept that some things you just can’t understand. I find it difficult to feel empathy for people due to my BPD but I can feel sympathy, and it’s one of the strongest things that I feel, especially for animals. I’m extremely grateful that even if I have gone slightly off track in the past, my parents and the people around me have taught me how to be like I am now.
Kind of cheesy, maybe? I don’t care. I am grateful for my life, which is a big thing for me considering a year ago I wanted to die pretty much all the time. Somehow I was always grateful to be here, I just hated it so much that I didn’t think it was worth it. I wanted so badly to be able to live a day of my life and go to bed thinking ‘this was a great day, thank you world’. I’ve done that many times since I’ve been in recovery.
Life IS beautiful and amazing, even though on a daily basis I might not see it. It brings so many opportunities that I didn’t realise because I was letting myself miss out on them. I’m thankful that I can finally experience things and feel the way I’ve wanted to feel about life in general for a very long time.