I saw M again today. I biked there – on my own, and felt much better about myself. I told M how I’d felt last time, like I’d somehow failed.
M, as usual, put things into perspective. And it goes like this. All my life, I’ve set my own standards. I’ve had no-one else’s standards to look to for guidance, therefore I push myself too hard, and am more likely to think I’ve failed. It happens a lot with only-children, apparently.
She suggested that I write about the things I have achieved – even from a year ago – and look at the dramatic changes in my life, and the way I have coped. Okay, I will give this a go.
This time last year, I could not go anywhere without my husband. Now, I can go on my own to my therapy sessions. Even though I feel sick, and my anxiety almost chokes me, I still get there, and that is a big ‘something’. I was very depressed last year, and could not see how my life could improve. Now, I have managed to work through my depression, and deal with my demons. Even coming out of a depressive phase, I was able to keep going when Ginger was made redundant. M said to me that she thought that was a ‘make or break’ point for my illness, in that I could have easily slipped back. However, I have coped, and helped Ginger cope too. Now, we are pulling ourselves out of a pretty traumatic time, and I think we are closer for it.
I need to get out of the habit of thinking I could have done things better, or faster, or feeling like a failure all the time. From now on, every time I start thinking like that, I need to remind myself how far down I have been in the past. If my legs had been smashed in an accident, I wouldn’t expect to walk as soon as the bones were mended, so how can I expect to get my life back to normal after three years of agoraphobia?