Today is a bad day, or at least it’s a bad day for me. When I say bad, I mean 1 or 2 steps away from crisis and therefore the possibility of ending back in hospital. Hopefully it won’t get to that.
I seem to be experiencing one trigger after the other that exacerbate the symptoms of my EUPD and PTSD, therefore pushing me ever closer to crisis. I call this a spiral.
The main triggers that I’m struggling with at the moment are: shame, fear of abandonment, fear of rejection, fear of people being cross with me (leading to fear of punishment), and members of my family being physically unwell. These are big ‘disasters’ for me.
I’m learning lots of techniques for coping, but practicing them when I need to is a big challenge.
Today I have also had a lot of negative thoughts going around my head. Things like: I can’t cope, I’m useless, I’m unlovable, I’m not worth anything, I’m such a let down, etc. I guess these are somewhat intensified by the fact that I feel useless and that I have let myself and Abba down, because I am currently unable to trust in Abba the way that I have been discovering during my morning coffees with Abba. That alone is a big thing to struggle with.
I find myself reminded of part of my Wellness and Recovery Action Plan (WRAP), where I say, ‘Diagnosis:
I have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder (EUPD) otherwise known as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). However, these diagnoses don’t define me but rather they helpfully explain some of the ways I currently experience life and relate to others, which is somewhat different to how others experience things and relate with others. The diagnosis enables me to access toolkits so that I can learn how to re-order the way I experience things and learn new ways of relating with others and cope with distressing emotions in healthy ways. Although learning healthy coping strategies and teaching my brain to create new pathways will take time the ‘success rate’ for living an emotionally healthy life is good. I have hope (and a certain level of determination!) for making a full and life-long recovery. Besides PTSD, EUPD, and associated symptoms such as eating disorders, I am diagnosed as ‘one human being’. My supporters all value me as a whole person. The approach that best helps me is an integrated approach for the whole person, not focusing on my disorders. My supporters do that really well.’
I think that I am reminded of this because of the hopefulness. The hope that I can get better. I think it also reminds me that I’m human and that as a human I am imperfect, flawed and broken. But that connects me to the rest of humanity and Abba-Jesus-Spirit.
I read a lot, but I keep coming back to Brene Brown’s books. I have them all. I like them because she talks about the hard stuff. Big issues such as, fear, shame, vulnerability, courage, love, and belonging. I also like the fact that she is both a researcher and a storyteller.
In her book The Gifts of Imperfection Brene Brown says, ‘Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.’
My story is hard for me to face, let alone share. But, I intend to courageously face it and determinedly choose healthy ways of coping.