The past couple of months has been a real roller coaster of emotions for me. I did things in my recent past that I am neither proud of, nor condone as they are not who I am or who I want to be. I have hurt people, turned lives upside down and forced myself back into an isolation that has had me feeling more than a little afraid for my safety.
I started back to therapy in April and have been working hard at correcting the mistakes that I had made when I was being pulled in too many directions because of the choices that I made. Happiness is an elusive mistress and I while I have had many moments of joy so far this year…my actions and words have made those moments short lived.
As I take stock of the things that I have done in recent history I struggle with the concept that this was my illness presenting itself or it way me trying to live up to the diagnosis. I think it is more of the latter as I didn’t like what I was doing and still did it anyways…at times justifying it to myself that this is the way people like me are supposed to act. I take ownership for my actions, my words and my deeds and to this day I pay for them in the most profound way by being alone.
When the truth came out about what I was doing…I wanted to curl up and die. I hurt others and for me that is not cool. I felt tremendous guilt and shame at what I had allowed myself to become and the worst thing…even after it all came out…I continued down a path that was self destructive. I don’t blame anyone other than myself. I allowed myself to make less than perfect choices that not only ended up hurting people that I care about…but also hurt myself.
These choices that I made created the isolation that I feel today. But it is not a dark isolation with the deep seated feeling of abandonment, I should but I don’t. I feel a cathartic cleansing has happened and I am coming out the other side feeling more ok with things as they are, then I did when I was wrapped up in the mess that I created.
I don’t regret walking away from one situation. It needed to happen, I destroyed the chance of a relationship and the feelings I had truly clouded my judgement about the possibility of friendship. I didn’t see or chose not to see the signs that I was repeating past mistakes and in doing so I lost touch with someone who was truly there for me…despite my actions.
The two months of reflection and hurt that I have gone through has had me come out the other side a different person. I have faults. I am less than perfect. I am at times broken. But all of this was created not by my illness. I was letting my diagnosis control who I was, not truly finding the ways to cope with things. I buried myself in a bottle way too much. I suffered on an emotional level by investing too much in someone who could not or would not return the investment. I didn’t see it for what it was…I allowed some emotions to cloud my judgement and in doing so forced other people in my life to walk away from who I had become.
I find myself apologizing a lot lately. Not so much because I was wrong (there is lots of that), I have been apologizing because I failed to live up to who I wanted to become. Who I feel that I was destined to become. I know more about who I am and have really put a lot of focus on building the biggest part of me that has been lacking for several years. My sense of self has been malformed for a lot of years. I didn’t know who I was or what I wanted to become so I would just transform myself to whatever or whoever was around me.
I was fortunate enough to find someone who truly understood this. Who could see my struggle but was still there to offer a kind ear and warm shoulder. My lack of self though really did become my undoing. I lost this person because of my actions. I wasn’t strong enough to be able to say no when I needed to, and at the same time was wanting the allure of the happiness that I thought was there to cloud my judgement. It was marking time…something that I am oh so good at doing. Reliving the same moments…and hoping for a different outcome that forced this kind and loving person to walk away from the drama that I was creating all around me.
In recent weeks, as I have took the time to really look at what I was doing, I realized that these choices that I made were not healthy. They were not who I was, or worse who I wanted to be. I couldn’t keep living the same lie over and over hoping that it would become true just because I wanted it to be. This did mean however that for a guy that fears the idea of being alone…that I would be. I chose to step away from the moments of happiness (or the facsimile of happiness) and really look at what I needed to do for me. It was like pulling off a band aid…it hurt in the moment but already I am feeling better.
I regret that these things hurt someone. That I lost touch with them and that their belief in me was at the time misplaced. I couldn’t see it in the moment as I was too close to the fantasy that I could have my cake and eat it too. I began the process of being brutally honest with everyone…and that honesty freed me from the bonds that had tied me into this endless loop of self destructive behaviour. I don’t harbour hard feelings about the time I spent in this cycle…I look at it as a life lesson. But I am finding it hard to reconcile that I did this all and broke the trust of someone who offered it without strings attached. I chose left…when I should have chose right. I walked the path of least resistance only to find out that it was just a slippery slope.
Who I was, who I had become and who I am in this moment…are three totally different things.
I am not fixed…not by any stretch of the imagination…but I am better. I am stronger. I am me. And for the first time in a long time…I can say that I am happy with who I am…RIGHT NOW.
I will continue to work on myself. Taking the steps to heal and learn and become a better person. I only wish that I was able to separate myself from all of this 4 months ago, things would be a lot different today if I had.