Gratitude Journal: The Bipolar Edition
Well, this post is a little late for Thanksgiving, but I’m nonetheless thankful for a number of things (and people) I tend to take for granted the rest of the year. Here are a few of them:
I’m thankful for stability, which in all the time I’ve been actively battling bipolar disorder, I never thought I’d find. It may not be perfect, and some days I still struggle with a bit of anxiety and/or depression, but it’s NOTHING compared with the nightmarish episode I was in a little over a year ago. Then again, almost everything is better than it was a year ago…I still have my husband and he’s healthier now than he was for some time. We’re also no longer on the verge of homelessness, we are warm and comfortable, and we don’t ever have to move again if we don’t want to.
I’m thankful for my medications. I finally got over resenting the fact that I needed them to feel “normal” when I realized I would never be normal, but I could manage and even enjoy my life if I stuck with them. Now I just take them and forget about it until it’s time for the next batch.
I’m thankful that we have a newer car and reasonable payments. Our Ford Taurus was a good car that lasted us for eight years, but age finally caught up with it and our son-in-law came to the rescue in the nick of time, helping us finance another car before we had to say good-bye to Old Faithful. He told us awhile back that he and our son wanted to take care of us; and by gosh, he’s been as good as his word. I’m still having trouble getting used to this thanks to my old trust issues, but I’m oh so grateful for the help!
I’m thankful for the magic of the Internet. I miss my daughter Mandy and her family something fierce, but even though they’re physically in Vermont, she’s really only a text or a Facebook post away. I also get to “chat” with my other daughter who’s half a world away in Afghanistan. Plus, I can (and do) reach people all over the globe with this blog. I’m not always a fan of what modern technology brings us—Top 40 “music” and the Kardashians come to mind here—but I honestly don’t know what I’d do without the World Wide Web.
Mostly, I’m thankful for life, family and friends. I love being with my “boys”, and knowing there is no shortage of folks ready and willing to have me in their lives makes me wonder why I ever wanted to end my own. Not even on my “down” days does that even come up as an option. Granted, there’s always the possibility that I could bottom out like I did last fall, but I’m learning not to anticipate the worst-case scenario, while at the same time being mindful that I have a chronic illness which can sneak in and slap me flat with any or no provocation.
And now it’s only a week until we leave the clouds and the cold for our Caribbean adventure. Yep, I’m pretty thankful for that too!