Day 525 – Maybe I’m not so Broken

Today I was meant to have lunch with The Suit, the first time we would see each other in almost 4 weeks. I confirmed with him this morning, and when the time came I made my way to the city.

I was on the bus with one stop to go when he called me to cancel. But I didn’t freak out. I didn’t get angry. I told him it was fine. And I didn’t push to make  new arrangements. I went on with my day. Did some shopping, ate lunch alone, came home. I was completely ok. Even if I was a little disappointed.

“Wow,” I can hear you all gasp, “What progress!” Well, no, not exactly. I didn’t need to do any of that other stuff because of the reason he cancelled. His sister had been taken to the hospital, and he had to go see her. So, I didn’t feel invalidated or devalued, or blown off. Which has made me realise that it is these feelings, and not specifically broken plans or disappointments,  that are what cause me to go into a tailspin sometimes. And these feelings would make anybody feel kinda shitty. I’m not denying that I take it too far when I feel this way and I still have some work to do on regulating my emotions, accepting them and not acting impulsively on them, but I have made progress. So maybe I’m not so unreasonable. Maybe I’m not so broken.

It also helps a lot that I’m feeling pretty good about myself again, and my life doesn’t seem so dark. I have a lot happening again. Seeing friends, meeting new people, a little freelance design work and a full time 3 month design internship starting next week. I feel like a proper human again, the internship especially buoying my spirits and feelings of self-worth. I feel like I’m finally back on track, and even though it’s unpaid, it’s a huge step in the direction I want to go in.

Now that I know specifically what it is that makes me act like a crazy person, I can start to directly address it. As a little kid who felt ignored and undervalued, there wasn’t a whole lot I could do beyond throwing a tantrum in order to get the attention and care that I needed. The tantrums probably worked sometimes, I can’t really remember. But as an adult, all they do is push people away, make them think “what a fuckwit.” As an adult, I have many more avenues open to me. I can cut people out of my life who make me feel devalued, or lessen my reliance on their opinion of me. I can stop comparing myself to others.  It all comes down to self-esteem, and needing others to make me feel validated. As an adult, I’m really the only person who needs to believe in me.

So, fuck it. I’m awesome. And it really doesn’t matter if you think so. I save insects from the toilet and worms from the footpath. I give to charity every month, even though I can’t really afford it. I’m a good designer and I speak two languages. I’m pretty funny and kinda pretty. I own up to my downfalls and never stop working at trying to be a better person. Bill Murray once made me a cup of tea and said I have a nice ass. I’ve survived two suicide attempts.

So, I’ve done ok so far.

13 thoughts on “Day 525 – Maybe I’m not so Broken

  1. Great post. I’m new to this whole blogging thing (I know, a little behind the times) but it’s so nice to hear someone talk about exactly what I go through on the daily. Thanks for your share.

  2. I just came across your blog. I’m in the middle of getting a diagnosis for what seemed to be Bipolar 2 but I am becoming more convinced that it’s BPD that I struggle with.

    The typical patterns were a lot more obvious when I was younger. I was much more violent and rageful and I would literally panic and chase down people I thought were leaving me. I’m 29 now and I am similiar to you in that I was only ever treated for depression despite how unstable my life and relationships were/are. It’s both a relief and a source of dread and fear to have an explanation as to why I act the way I do and then to see the perhaps, lifetime of work I have ahead of me.

    A few years ago I started travelling and landed at a yoga/meditation center in Mexico. I ended up staying for 3 months. During that time I did a few ayahuasca ceremonies which left me feeling like that wall between me and myself had been shattered and since then I’ve never really felt quite as empty as I did.

    I was also in an enviroment that validated all internal processes, no matter how gritty. I still experienced the feelings I get about certain people, feeling as though I’m disliked or judged, but there were enough new friends around that helped balance out the intensity of all of that. I had really intense periods of peace and feelings of love and openess. My time there ended with a silent retreat and the postive feelings lasted for a few months after I came home. Unfortunatly it was turned upside down when I found myself in a relationship with someone who wasn’t able to handle the intensity of my emotions.

    Honestly looking back over the last few years, there has been a lot of beauty and I have come so far from where I was. Fear of abandonment has lessoned slightly and I have been able to speak really candidly about everything I’m feeling with the people close to me. It helps to feel understood. Something also clicked for me earlier this year during an especially isolating bout of depression. I relized that I truely learned to love myself. I really do. There have been many days, weeks, since then that I have layed in bed wanting to kill myself but out of love for myself instead of self loathing. I know that sounds incredibly strange. I guess in the past when I wanted to die it was coupled with this deep hate for myself and all my flaws. Now when I want to die it’s coming from a place of compassion for who I am and the suffering I’ve had to endure.

    I’m not entirely sure if this is a huge improvement, ha, but it’s something.

    I am seeing a professional now who doesn’t look at me with those eyes that read “oh boy, I’m not trained for this”. I will be making it into a DBT group sometime in the next 6 months when the waiting list is cleared. This is the first place I’ve read about Schema Therapy and I’m really looking forward to hearing about your experience with it.

    I would do anything to get better and move on with my life. I’m wondering if I could do both at the same time?

    I just left a blog post on your blog.

    Thanks for sharing your story. I’ll be reading and rooting for your from the sidelines.

    x Becca

    • Hi Becca,

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my blog. Out of anything I’ve done so far, this blog has been the most helpful for me. Better even than journaling, because this way I’m accountable to someone, anyone…I don’t know. I know no one is reading this religiously, but I still feel an obligation to update it as much as I can. And putting my words down somewhere tangible really helps me to sort through my thoughts, which are always so tangled.

      I also participated in ayahuasca ceremonies, eight of them, in Peru in 2011. I felt like I’d rid myself of so much negative energy, and learnt some valuable lessons from it. But coming back to real life again really kicked my ass, and I realised I was no better than before. Maybe slightly, I don’t know. But that was for depression. The BPD really only came to the forefront of things after the breakup of the relationship that began this blog.

      I understand what you mean about wanting to kill yourself out of compassion for yourself. That is part of my suicidal ideation too. Mostly it’s to escape the pain of my everyday…I really love myself too, but it’s so hard and painful and frustrating and lonely and tiring going through this. Especially alone, without a supportive partner. People seem to think that because I’ve tried to die, want to die, that I must hate myself. They say, “You need to learn to love yourself” which I find offensive to hear. It’s so trite. People put pets out of their agony all the time, out of love.

      I’m not sure when I’ll get back to my therapist as I have a fulltime internship starting on Monday, but I bought a book on schema therapy and hope to start some work on it myself. Constantly monitoring and questioning your thoughts and where they come from and whether they are helpful is one of the best things for me so far, but it’s tiring.

      I think getting better and moving on with your life go hand in hand. Can you really do one without the other?

      I’d like to follow your progress too.

      x Sparrow

  3. I read your blog all the time, and check frequently for updates 🙂 So someone is absolutely following you. Happy to see you keep making progress – It’s great following you and seeing how you develop and understand new things about yourself. Don’t have much to say, but hope your days are going great and that your internship is all you want it to be 🙂

  4. I couldn’t express it better than Thunder. Bravo! Such great insights. I think you are a talented writer as well, you may want to add that your list.

  5. I just found your blog…yep…you are pretty awesome! as the wife of a borderline husband…I have never really understood what was wrong…it used to make me really angry…but now? I am learning all I can to support him…and its wonderful, giving, articulate people like you that make it possible to feel compassion and understanding…thank you!

    • It’s comments like this that make my whole journey worth it 🙂 Your husband needs your understanding and compassion. I hope he is getting help too, because being with us is not always easy. You are an amazing person for standing by him. I hope I can find someone to stand by me one day soon.

  6. Pingback: Day 549 – “You Want it Too Badly” | From borderline to better

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