I have a mental illness.
Yes, I know, I know, you'd think I would have figured that out by now given my many hospitalisations, the number of pills I take, my ESA and DLA, the severity of my episodes and my ongoing difficulties with those much-touted "activities of daily living". But even at those times when I've been most rational I don't think I've ever really believed it. Because I would surely fix it all, any day now, certainly sometime soon. Just a matter of getting on and doing it, being a little stronger, trying a little harder.
One of the things the Crisis Team discussed with me was having a support worker again, to help me keep on top of the house and go to the community workshop. Afterwards I thought oh no, it's ridiculous to need that, of course I can manage. But what's my experience, what's the reality? And it is that apart from brief periods of time I do not manage to keep my house clean. And I don't mean that it is just a little messy, I mean that it is dirty, often verging on disgusting. And I hate it. As for the workshop - well, when my mood was rising in the summer I was able to go there easily, and chat to people and participate. But then things started to get out of control and I didn't attend, then it was closed for the holiday and I just haven't felt able to go since. And this has happened over and over again with different groups and classes and courses I've tried to do. I have failed to continue with them, despite all my intentions.
Realising this, and trying to let go of my long-standing denial, makes me feel a great deal of sorrow, something akin to grief. Because I have not been able to live the life I thought I would, I have not been able to do the things I always dreamed of. And it's possible I never will. I feel I need to rebuild my life around this new understanding, and rethink my future and what will be feasible for me.