What’s it like to live with Borderline Personality Disorder? For me, it’s like having a collection of personalities that I put on like masks, but not being sure of my true personality.
It’s intense emotions – all of them and sometimes all at once it seems – emotions that sometimes overwhelms me. Imagine standing at the edge of the ocean with your feet planted in the sand – emotions come and go like gentle waves lapping at your toes. You feel them, are aware of them and know what to do with them. Your feet never waiver, even if the waves get to be strong. For me, I’m standing in that same spot, yet the emotions that I feel are like huge waves crashing over me, leaving me gasping for air. It’s exhausting trying to stand in the sand and sometimes I just fall. When I fall, eventually the emotions recede, but I’m left bruised and battered by the storm.
But I’m a survivor. I keep getting back up and trying to beat the waves. I can’t let them defeat me. Before my breakdown in 2006 I wasn’t aware that I had a mental illness – but after numerous hospitalizations and a lot of therapy, I’m much more educated about my disorder. And I refuse to let it define me. I am a beautiful, kind and loving person who struggles with managing emotions. I can go from the lowest of lows to the highest of highs in a matter of minutes which can be difficult for the people who care about me. I’m funny, smart, and kind. I’m chaotic, disorganized and moody but loving me is never dull.
I’m going to keep going, get stronger and spread the word about mental illness. I’m not ashamed to admit that I have a disease of the mind. That’s it – nothing more nothing less.
To those of you who are battling your own storms, I wish you strength. Don’t give up – there will be a break in the clouds.