21 November 2009

A Big Step Forward

Waking up for the day at 0200 makes for a long day, to be sure. Sometimes it is when I am most prolific; this morning I just sat around, drank some hot tea and listened to music. I had a better day yesterday and it is good to feel this way.

I met one friend (K) for coffee at the Starbucks around the corner from my house (the same parking lot where I egged the patrol cars. Even though it is within walking distance from my house, ever since I have had to resort to using this cane, I asked if she could drop by my house and pick me up. We spent close to two hours just talking about everything in our lives. K showed me some text messages (that I do not remember sending on that ill-fated night. You could tell that I was getting progressively more drunk as some time passed; the texting in some cases was totally illegible. It was odd to see some evidence of the state of mind I was in during that whole crisis.

The time spent together was good for me. I got out of the house, which I desperately need to start doing, and I was able to spend time with an old friend whom I rejected quite despicably the night of that debacle. Although I sent her an email a week or so ago to apologize for my ugly actions, I had not seen K face-to-face since I had been committed. It was good to be able to talk with her. In one of my earlier emails to her, I established my boundaries and she totally understood my needs. She acknowledged that she did not quite understand all of what BPD encompasses, but knew, through reading my blog, the depths of what I have experienced. I was able to spend time with a good friend and did not wear my mask. It was not that scary. This has helped me open the door to more opportunities. And last night when I was alone in my house, it didn’t seem as ominous. I actually enjoyed a good evening at home by myself—something that would not have been able to say before this.

While it was hard to make that first phone call to invite K for coffee, and I was very anxious when she first came by, I was not sure what to expect. However, she put me at ease immediately. She came up to my door to help me down the front stairs and into her car (I hate that I have to move so slowly these days). We ordered our coffee, sat down and started talking as if no time had passed. I soon felt quite at ease. This was a break-through opportunity for me—one that I can continue to make, I hope. They told me in group that I just have to practice using these tools before I can become comfortable using them. About the only time I got uncomfortable was when this person chose to sit right next to us in a room filled with empty chairs and sofas. I could feel the anxiety rise, but kept it to myself not wanting to spoil the moment. I just mentally put up some blinders and avoided his presence. Thankfully he did not stay long (he did not even buy any coffee!).

So, yesterday marked a big step forward for me. And I am going to take that at face value and accept that progress for what it is.©2009


  1. It's good that you are healing relationships with those who are your support system. I have found that I lash out at those who I am closest to when I am in my episodes. Later I always feel regret, embarrassment and sadness for my actions. It is so important to reconnect during my well times. My husband is learning to separate my "attacks" and know that it is not me but the illness that is causing me to behave irrationally. It is difficult for him to not take it personally but he is making huge progress. Mental illness is difficult for those who live with it and also those who love us. It sounds like you are doing so much better. Good job for hanging on.

  2. @Dina Marie--Thanks for "stopping by." I'm just trying to put one foot in front of the other without losing my balance :) Small doses so far seem to be the key. I always appreciate your comments and support.

  3. Excellent news Alix - it's great to read such a positive post from you.