Bed-bound, crippled, tears rolling down my face my journey to recovery began. I was at rock bottom, I couldn’t fight any longer, I couldn’t tread water any longer, I couldn’t do it alone.
Wednesday the 19th of December, 1400 hours, I met my therapist.
I sat in my bed, under my covers, delicate. My therapist asked me what I wanted, what I wanted from therapy. In that single-moment thousands of things rushed through my mind. I wanted to learn to drive, to go back to education, to have a job. I didn’t say any of those things though, instead, I said I wanted to stop surviving and start living. That was what the thousands of thoughts were, what it meant to live.
Since that very first therapy session, 309 days, 4 hours, 59 minutes and 4 seconds have passed to this very moment as I write this.
I have a job, I work in retail and have had my job for nearly 6 months now. I’m attending college, I started in September, which makes me 2 months and a 1/6th of the way through. I’ve had 3 driving lessons, and I am terribly poor at steering, especially when turning right.
In those 309-day’s I have also been to restaurants, enjoyed my first even Gin and cocktail, said yes to impromptu plans, woke up before lunch-time, met my best friend (we met on the internet.)…
I still have panic attacks and anxiety, I still cling to my coke zero like it’s a bulletproof vest and I am walking through a war zone. I still carry out endless irrational habits and coping mechanisms. To so many my anxiety is still winning, staring me in the face and I am a passenger. But to the few who are still here 309 days later, I am winning every single morning when I take a deep breath and I decide to fight.
Somebody tried tough love with me today, and the conversation was also filled with anecdotal comparisons that undermined how hard it is for me to simply exist clenching onto a coke zero at 9 am in a classroom. That undermined how far I have come and how hard I try every day, to come out the winner of at least one of my daily battles.
I sobbed and I felt like all of my hard work had been for nothing. That every battle was pointless because no matter how hard I push, what I can give will never be enough.
The reality I realize, as I sit here writing this, is that no matter what anybody else says or believes, I am winning, and I am enough. My recovery may be in its early stages and still not be a pretty sight, filled with snot bubbles, dozens of half-empty coke zero cans, and bad days that look like the beginning to so many.
But it doesn’t have to be pretty or have to conform to social standards. And it doesn’t have to be convincingly my best to others (whatever that means?), it simply has to be my best. People seem to forget that my recovery is exactly that, mine.
I have climbed endless mountains to reach the top and realize that beyond the clouds is another steep climb. I keep on climbing, stopping when I start to slip, not because I don’t know that I may not fall. Simply because I have fallen before when I stopped listening to myself and starting listening to those around me that were in fact simply watching me climb and how it gets messy.
So, to those who are watching, remember everything looks easier than it is in reality. To those who are climbing, I climb with you, and you know when to pause. Trust yourself, those who matter will pause with you.
This blog is my home, and though at times I neglect it because of the busyness of the modern western world. I always find my way back. I thank those who are still reading for living my journey with me.
Here is to another 309 days of recovery.
Tomorrow shall come…
Today Tomorrow Forever,
(How I have missed you all.)
Song: Yours to create. – Fourth & Coats // This is me. – The Greatest Showman