One Step Forward, Ten Steps Back

I’ve had a bad day today. Unfortunately I’ve let it set me back a little, which just goes to prove that my recovery is still pretty fragile despite the strides I’ve made over the past few weeks. Of course, getting served with court papers for our impending eviction didn’t exactly make for happy thoughts, and the court date is set for December 26th. The day after Christmas? Really?

Then I looked around the house at the bare walls, the big picture window where the Christmas tree should be, the floor where brightly-wrapped packages used to be piled on top of each other. This year, there are no lights, no decorations, no gifts, no big holiday dinner at home, no anticipation. No traditions. And when you get right down to where the cheese binds, it’s ALL MY DAMN FAULT.

Well, it is. Or rather, it’s my failure to beat my demons into submission that’s to blame. As hard as I try to keep this thought at bay because it can be dangerous, I’m too weary and too discouraged to fight it at the moment. There’s just no denying the fact that none of this would be happening if it wasn’t for me. If only I could have stuck with that surveyor job…..if only I’d been able to keep working…..if only I hadn’t let this illness get out of control…..everything would be the way it used to be. We could have had another Christmas like last year’s, which was as close to perfection as a family Christmas can ever be. Of course, it would have been a hard act to follow, but I would’ve busted my buns to make it at least as good because that’s what I do.

Or at least, that’s what I used to do. Now that I can’t even buy gifts for the grandkids—and my soon-to-be ex-house is dark and cold—I don’t know what the hell to do. I feel like the holidays are magnifying what has become a stark reality: I am poor, I am sick, and I am to blame for this entire mess.

One step forward, two (or ten) steps back. Yes, I know I shouldn’t beat myself up; for one thing, it doesn’t solve the problem, and for another, I’ve been doing what I’m supposed to—taking meds, sticking to my sleep schedule, seeing Dr. Awesomesauce on a regular basis. I’ve also done a hell of a lot of hard work in therapy, because he knows I’m smarter than I act sometimes and he does NOT let me get away with any kind of intellectual laziness.

But it’s a whole different ballgame when I look around me and find chaos everywhere—chaos caused directly by me, or at least by my illness. But my illness is part of me, isn’t it? I can’t blame it without blaming myself, can I? Where does it end, and where do I begin?

Sorry about the pity party…..I’m just tired of losing so many battles with this thing. I’ll get over it. I always do. But for today, I’m giving myself permission to wallow because every time I look around my sad, empty house I see my hand at work, destroying everything I touch. And nothing I do will put it back together again.

Published by bpnurse

I'm a retired registered nurse and writer who also happens to be street-rat crazy, if the DSM-IV.....oops, 5---is to be believed. I was diagnosed with bipolar I disorder at the age of 55, and am still sorting through the ashes of the flaming garbage pile that my life had become. Here, I'll share the lumps and bumps of a late-life journey toward sanity.... along with some rants, gripes, sour grapes and good old-fashioned whining from time to time. It's not easy being bipolar in a unipolar world; let's figure it out together.

9 thoughts on “One Step Forward, Ten Steps Back

  1. what can you do that will help? Make some phone calls, go to a meeting, do something nurturing for yourself? KNITTING? haha had to throw that in. But seriously, what have you done lately that made you laugh? And focus on that gratitude list. I know, all of the above can be swept away with a broom and a good excuse but they really do help. Love you xoxo

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m trying not to be so negative about things, although I really am NOT going to start knitting, LOL. I’ve just got to get life settled down a bit before I can even think about taking a break.


    1. That’s the hurdle right there…..I can’t seem to convince myself that BP and all the adverse events that have happened because of it *aren’t* my fault. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. I’m sure I’ll get there one day.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Forgiving ourselves for not being superwomen – for not being able to do EVERYTHING and take care of EVERYONE, for being ill and needing others to take care of us – is hard, and it is a process. For me, forgiveness and acceptance have been ongoing.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Nothing is your fault…it is just the way it is. Good things will happen down the road. You will be counseling people in your same boat. I pray for Will’s health and for you. Don’t go down the negative roads,stay strong within your abilities. Just do what you can little things. Little things add up. And come over on my crazy blog, I am not even showering!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: