The road to recovery is a difficult and treacherous one, not laid out in a nice clear path that’s easy to follow. I’ve had to trailblaze my own way and here’s some tips I’ve learned:
1. Maps don’t exist. While most times it’s great to have a map and plan out your trip and all the stops you’ll make along your way, with mental illness, there is no map. You have to go where the journey takes you and trust that you’ll get where you need to be. For people who plan, this can be very difficult to accept.
2. There will be roadblocks and detours. Many roadblocks. As I moved along, I would think that I was cruising nicely and then suddenly, there it was – a sign indicating that I needed to take a different way to get where I was going. Initially, I would get angry and frustrated but then I learned that there’s no time limit on when I had to arrive, so I was able to accept these detours as being a part of the experience and allowed myself to enjoy the different path I was on.
3. People won’t always understand. Some people in my life couldn’t grasp why I wasn’t just going from point A to point B and even I couldn’t always explain it to them. I came to understand that this journey wasn’t for them to understand, just as their journey wasn’t for me to “get”. Letting go of this belief has helped me a great deal in accepting the fact that we all have our own path to walk and the only person who needs to understand it is ourselves.
4. While it’s hard work, making your way can be rewarding. As I move along in this road to recovery, I’ve discovered many new and exciting things about myself. I’ve gained a sense of self-confidence that comes with experience and it’s helping me continue to move forward. I’ve become more confident in myself as I keep going on this journey.
The road to recovery is yours to create. Don’t compare it to someone else’s because no two journeys are ever the same.