I'm trying to ground myself in the present and that's tough. I have some very real problems looming and any hope of disability, should I qualify, is many months away. It creates some pressure but learning to deal with these situations is part of my recovery.
Yesterday in therapy we began discussing the concept of Radical Acceptance versus Change. Before I go on, again this is only from my perspective as that is all I know.
These are 2 very opposite concepts, at least for the BPD brain to process. I would "guess" in a normal brain either radical acceptance is not needed... or it somehow is an automated process. I've referred to several feelings along this short journey. The big 3 are pain, hard and abandonment.
As we talked I realized the Radical Acceptance is the pain and changing is what is so hard to do. Acceptance begins with admittance and this is why its so hard to get going and at age 47 it feels bleak at times.
Radical Acceptance is painful. It begins with an acknowledgment of pain you have caused, relationships you have destroyed and decisions you made that had far reaching circumstances. That's really painful for me. It also explains why I can lay in bed for hours and play a "choose your own adventure" as I re-live my life, you know...if you pick option A turn to page 21 and if you choose option B got to page 44. That's how I viewed my past....lots of "what ifs" versus examining the fact that whatever decisions we made,right or wrong, have led us to this very moment in time. While we may not be able to change the past we have to accept it for what it is. And that is....what it is.
Sounds easy enough :-) For me, what is tough, is while the average person may have a handful of decisions, relationships, etc....they think of, it neither overly affects their present nor does it linger littered with self deprecation, regret and anger.
The other part of acceptance for me is understanding that while a lot of things now make sense, some of my actions still happened and whether it would have made a difference to know a long time ago, I didn't and I am where I am at. I can type it all day long but learning it, owning it and 100% accepting it are works in progress.
Change. Hmmmm....still haven't really explored this in detail. I'm not sure this won't take some real time. I don't yet have the tools to make big changes, mostly because I think (re) training the brain takes time. I'm still pretty nervous about even leaving my house...which again is really a new one for me. Other than a few e-mails and a call I haven't heard from my friends, which I am not sure what I would do if I did. Probably invite them over. Again intellectually I understand change I just don't yet have the tools to know "what" to change and I definitely have no idea yet what I really believe in. One thing about BPD that we haven't (Me I mean) discussed is
- Identity disturbance, such as a significant and persistent unstable self-image or sense of self