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What recovery means to me. Friday October 9, 2015

Recovery, according to my dictionary ,"is a return to a normal state of health, mind or strength."

My problem with the word recovery and the definition is because it assumes there is a normal state of health to retrun to, but what does normal mean?

I have not had a major episode of depression or mania for many years (I don't think the actual number is relevant) – does that make me recovered? I dont think so because I have had times when I have struggled. I have learnt I always need to be careful that I keep physically well, eat healthily and do not exhaust myself or get too tired...

To some, I have not recovered because I take medication. I have well meaning friends say to me, you have probably out grown your bipolar. I am not hung up on the word recovery, I take each day as it comes.

The term recovery does not have any real meaning for me. I prefer the word resilience, because it is the tools we learn that enable us to pick ourselves up when we fall down that are crucial for us to maintain our health.

There are a lot of resources for people with a mental health issue, but as they get better there is often little help to help people stay well.

In my opinion people can still have times when they are unwell, but still be getting better. It is about control and knowledge. Taking control of your illness through knowledge and education is a major step in being responsible for your health.

Many Moodscopers are incredibly honest in their journey and while they may be experiencing a low mood they are always looking for ways to help them climb back out of the hole.

When the aim is for resilience and not recovery, there are no setbacks but opportunities to show the ability to recover from difficulties. There are always going to be obstacles placed in our way and if we can learn to develop strategies to cope with them, that will help us to maintain our health.

Online communities can help people learn from other's experience and stop people from feeling isolated. I was interested when Jenny posed a question to Lex about recovery and it made me think about what recovery means to me.

I would now like to hear what recovery means to you. It could be one word or a few paragraphs.

Does the word recovery have any meaning for you or do you have another word that suits you better?

A Moodscope member

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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Anonymous Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 12:57am

Hi Leah
Situations and events have meant that Recovery has had to play a big part in my current life, its been long and emotionally hard, but the journey to Recovery has been eventful to say the least, definately not taken lightly and by far not yet completed. In particular that I am not a product of my circumstances anymore, but a product of my decisions. Taking control, loving myself and deciding what's best for me is the Recovery.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:16am

HI anon 12.57am, Thanks for your reply. I like that you say" ...I am not a product of my circumstances anymore, but a product of my decisions." I will write that down and see if I can act on it. Your reply has left me a lot to think about.

Paul Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 5:19am

Interesting word there Leah
Recover put a new cover over it, cover it up but it's still there underneath. Suppose it can mean many things. I have a brother who is a recovering alcoholic he has not had an alcoholic drink for 30 years but still calls himself a recovering alcoholic. Only ever one drink away from being back to an awful existence that he had. Refreshed sounds a nicer word. Hope many on here can feel refreshed today


Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:17am

Paul, I like your take on recovery. The word refreshed is uplifting and positive. Thanks for your comments.

Milliecat Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 6:46am

Thank you for your thoughtful bog. The language linked to ' getting better' is very emotive. My experience has been hat I hate being asked " are you better?" Better than what? I became a Peer Trainer for a Welness and Recovery College with links to the Scottish Recovery Network. From this I met other folk all with lived experience of a wide range of mental health stuff. We are all recovering ... and it is a great sense of connection knowing there are others recovering and most importantly that Recovery is on going. I aim to be recovering forever.
The SRN has a grea website and tools for recovery - you could say that learning about Recovery put me on the right road. The road is not straight from A to B but has all sorts of twists and turns. Do we ever reach the destination of Better or Normal. I have found that Acceptance is the best companion. ( another emotive word!)on the Recovery road.
Resilience is also part of recovery. It's a word used widely within the therapy world to describe politely how mch cr*p you can go through and still survive! Without it though. Recovery could falter. Recovery isn't a start and a finish.
As for the dictionary definition I was rather disappointed by that - Normal is another tricky word, in fact it requires a separate blog I think.
Thank you for your blog today. It's set my day off very well.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:21am

Milliecat, Thanks for your insightful comments. "Acceptance is the best companion on the recovery road" that is something I really need to hear. I too, don't know how to answer" are you better? " Is Recovery a journey and not a destination?

Leah Sat, Oct 10th 2015 @ 5:55am

Millie cat, Thanks for the SRN website. I like the WRAP acronym-wellness recovery action plan. It looks like it will be very informative. Thanks again. like your name.

Milliecat Sun, Oct 11th 2015 @ 9:20am

Hey Leah just checked for a reply and most touched to read this. Acceptance with self compassion are big tools for recovery. The WRAP approach is one of those things that sounds like doh obvious but when you get into it - listing all your triggers, naming folk who can help, planning what you can do and what would best be avoided, etc it's a real journey into your new way of living. I'm so pleased you checked out SRN. my time with them was essential in helping memtomfully understand the new concept of Recovery. And that health professionals MUST understand this and work with people with Lived Experience. I'm not sure where you are (UK?) But I'm hopefulmthere would be a WRAP group near you? Def worth a big step and going. failing that you can download it and work on it with friend\health prof etc. Good luck with it - :)) If folk ask me ' am I better?' I just reply with ' yes I'm recovering thank you.' Then ask them 'how are you?' After a while random folk stop asking. It's a lot easier that way! Anyway hope this finds you recovering and resilient today? My username is from my cat Millie, a constant companion on my Recovery Journey. X

Adam Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:13am

I think you've really put your finger on something important there Leah; I found that blog post quite profound!

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:22am

Adam, thanks for your kind words. I just wish I had the answers and not lots of questions!

Debs Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:20am

Thank you for this Leah - interesting food for thought. For many years now I've been in a battle with myself about recovery. In some ways I try and rush to the finish, to find that magical moment when I'm
'Cured' and 'better'. And this thinking sets me up for a fall. I have a good week and I say 'wow, I'm well, I'm better, yeah!' and then I get on with the type of life I think I want to be living - packing too much in and thinking I'm invincible. Inevitably there then comes a crash. I like your idea of using recovery as an ongoing process - that there is a maintenance life to be lived full of self-care and compassion. Responsibility is the word that stands out to me - that I need to be responsible for my life, my wellness and my path. Only then will I keep making the choices that will keep me well. Xx

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:24am

Debs Thanks for your honest and thoughtful reply. "Responsibility" is a great word maybe will start a list of R words. I think learning is all pert of the process and the more we learn about ourselves the more tools we have to cope. that's the plan, the hard part is following it!!

Lesley Wed, Oct 14th 2015 @ 8:53am

Hi Debs, I identify with your description of the battle with recovery. I try to rush through life - I have rushed for many years. It is as if I am a washing machine on Fast Spin or 400 rpm. "I get on with the life I think I want to be living" is a profound insight. "Invincibility" and the "inevitable crash" ring so true with me as well. I don't regard myself as bipolar but others definitely see me on that spectrum. I see a hypnotherapist who underlines to me that I need routine and sameness in my life to stabilise me. I need to live in the middle spectrum, even although I feel that I am betraying my greater ambitions for life. Thank you

Debs Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:34am

Milliecat - thanks so much for the SRN website recommendation, I've just had a look and read one of the stories. It was very moving... and helpful. I will be visitung again and using the strategies I uncover. Thank you xxx

Milliecat Sun, Oct 11th 2015 @ 9:25am

Hi Debs - so pleased the SRN website has helped. When I discovered it and worked ( as in volunteered) eight them it was like being on a planet where I was totally accepted for every gm ng, even arriving late and perhaps just well not really was all part of Recovery. Def check out WRAP too as it sounds like you would benefit from a written down manifesto admit were of what works for you and what doesn't - and keep that Responsibility theme going. There is also a spin off writers website too ( name escapes me) but its linked to SRN and you can write privately or within the group. Not sure if that's of any interest? The blog on here does it for me! Cool - may your day be full of R words! ( including Revels) yum

Joanne Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:39am

I spent years searching for the magical thing that was going to 'cure' me, even though my diagnosis is a life sentence. I cannot count the different therapies I have tried and the money spent on them let alone the time. Once I realised that recovery meant being as well as I could be not forever but for that day, and, that the answers to my difficulties lay withing my own self management I found it easier and yes... pleasurable to live, not every day but some

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:28am

Joanne Thank you. Many people do not come to the realisation you did. Your insight will help others reading it. I still tend to blame others when I know I need to manage myself. Thanks for reminding me.

Lesley Wed, Oct 14th 2015 @ 8:55am

Thank you, Joanne. Chasing cures can define our lives if we are not careful.

Hopeful One Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 8:19am

Hi Leah- thank you for a very thoughtful blog.If one sets the bar at 'recovery' then a relapse( which is always possibility in bi polar by its nature)) feels like a demoralising failure. I would use the word 'remission'. This sets the bar a lot lower allowing one to cope with a relapse easier as one is not judging oneself as a failure.I happen not to be a bipolar but my approach applies equally to depression which I have been through.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:29am

Hopeful One, Another R word for my list. Resilience, Responsibility, refreshed. (sorry if I have missed one) Thanks for your comments.

Anonymous Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 8:43am

Hi Leah. Your blog raises some interesting points. You hit the nail on the head when you query the meaning of a normal state of health. We compare ourselves to other people whom we assume are happy and content and we aspire to be like them and/or we think back to when we felt really happy and wish we could be like that all the time. So for years "recovery" meant achieving that happy state for ever; now I have learnt and realise that I am not exactly sure what I am to recover from. Perhaps the way I feel most days is me and that as Les said yesterday, I should like that "me" and not continually shun it and try to be someone I can't possibly be day in day out. Milliecat rightly says that what is normal is a subject for another blog. So recovery fro me means the realisation and acceptance that I will never recover and why should I?

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:32am

Anon, 8.43am What an interesting reply. I have always had a problem with the word normal. I suppose recovery is often used by medical staff. Get well cards used to say "wish you a speedy recovery". Again I have more to think about. Thanks.

A Lost Boy Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 8:56am

Thank you for sharing those thoughts, Leah!

Truly, how does one define normal? Is there a specific condition or a state of mind that has been marked or set as 'Normal'? What is normal to one person will obviously not be the same to another one.

To one person, normal could mean being able to shut out those haunting thoughts and just stay calm, even if it is for one single second. To another, it would mean to be able to exude an enormous amount of energy to the people around them.

I have never quite grasped, nor have been able to explain the concept of being normal.

For a major part of my life, including now, the default state I would be in would seem to others as a depressed/ lost state. I never quite observed myself earlier, but I do now and I know when I am getting worse and when I am getting better.

Am I normal? Probably, to a few people. Probably not, to a few people. There are many people to whom I seem like a hopeless soul. Yet, there a few who have seen me at a high. So, which of these is my normal state?

I keep switching between the two, based on a lot of factors and there's no mark set for me that I can aim for as a normal state to be in. I believe that I just need to make sure I don't spin out of control.

Maybe, normal is anything which helps us be at ease with ourselves. Something that makes us feel that we are in control of what we are, even if it doesn't extend to a control over why we are.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:35am

a Lost Boy, What a thoughtful reply. I like "...normal is anything which helps us be at ease with ourselves" Except I have no desire to be normal I like being eccentric and quirky!! Thanks for taking time to reply. I am sure your comments will help others.

A Lost Boy Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 10:42am

That was what I was saying. Maybe, being quirky and eccentric makes you feel better. That could be your 'normal' :)

susan Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 12:17pm

Lost Boy, your last sentence is one i'm going to refer to a lot. It is not particularly helpful to focus on the 'why'. Thank you! xx

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 12:26pm

Lost boy, I don't think I have a concept of normal as I have so many different Leahs! Maybe that is another blog, or a bit like what les said yesterday how we change when we are with different people, or I do. Do you have your own personal 'normal'?

Hans Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:21pm

Normal is the state in between of extremes. Why worry so much about words?

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 8:59pm

Hans Thanks for your comments. For me not so much worrying just exploring what the word means and how it can affect us. Thanks again, you make a lot of sense.

Mary Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:32am

I have accepted that I will never be "better". Bi-polar is a life sentence. I am grateful for the times in my cycle when I'm on a level keel, neither having to manage the hypomania as one would a strong and unruly horse, nor mired down by the exhaustion of the depression. I am grateful for all the self management tools and for the years of therapy and counselling which mean I am left with only the physical aspect of my condition. It's still a bloody inconvenience - to me and my family - but it's not life threatening. And that's a great mercy.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:40am

Mary, I admire you have reached acceptance, I sometimes say I have but deep down I haven't. I appreciate your personal insights. I have to work on the grateful part. More work!!

susan Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 11:01am

I really didn't want to have to think about anything today when i awoke this morning...but your blog has made that impossible, Leah!!!! And then all the wonderful comments, too. To me, being well means being conscious to the degree that furthers my well-being and the well-being of those near me. Minding that gap that ratg and Les talked about yesterday so that i can consider what I need, what my family and friends need, and what my life needs going forward so right decisions can be made. When venturing into unwellness, all those things are abandoned until i crash and have to start all over again. All those things on your 'R' list are working when i'm more fully conscious. Anon 12:57's comment was brilliant, too -- i am a product of my decisions, not my circumstances. Thank you, Leah, and everyone. This community is so rich with brilliant, thoughtful, caring people who understand that the human condition can be a very difficult reality to cope with. love xx

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 11:36am

Susan, I woke up feeling a similar way and then when I saw my blog was published, and all the wonderful comments so it made me think. Thank you too. I agree a very caring community and am constantly surprised by the wonderful people with amazing ideas.

Bearofliddlebrain Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 11:52am

Having been in the middle of a cruddy week, I think I've finally found Resilience - am starting to bounce back instead of staying down;
Reasoning - have had several chats to myself to reason why I am down and why I can't get back up, and chats with other half too (no, not split personality - my husband!) Responsibility? Yes, I have a Responsibility to myself, to Remember how to use the tricks of our trade to help myself get better and to allow this to happen as it will pass.
Recovery? Maybe, or as Hopeful One said, Remission...perhaps I'm on that road....but definitely on a journey.
Normal? Pah, as someone has already said, we possibly believe others are 'normal' but we can never tell who or what is normal. The grass is always greener....
We are definitely all the same - completely and uniquely different!!
Super blog Leah,
Bear x

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 12:19pm

Bear, Love the R words will add reasoning and remember and maybe reality. My reality may mean I cry and am fragile in the mornings- don't talk to me before 9am!! Sorry you have a cruddy week. I find in your comments you have so much compassion for others so I hope you have some left for yourself. Thanks again for your kind words.

Bearofliddlebrain Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 4:43pm

Thank You. Dear Leah, you have written a great blog that is being discussed in the most useful ways! Am Bearing Up! x x x

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:01pm

Bear, I used to collect bears at a time in my life when I was very low and the bears comforted me. Your name makes me smile and recall the reassurance my bears gave me!

Jacqueline Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 1:58pm

My doctor said my bipolar is part of who you are . In other words there is no such thing as me without bipolar .Just sleeping well and eating well is very important for me and enjoying the moment .By the way I have CKD (chronic kidney disease) after taking Lithium and not having proper blood tests for it . Do make sure you have the proper tests regularly .

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:03pm

Jacqueline, Thanks so much for your wise words. I am so sorry about the CKD. I have been taking Lithium for over 20 years and know the importance of blood tests. Bipolar is part of who I am but does not define me. That is so true about enjoying the moment, I still need to work on that! Thanks for reminding me,

The Gardener Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 2:00pm

Leah, do you realise what you have started? Mary's 'life sentence' would seem to apply to chronic? (wrong word) bi-polar, more, that's your genes and your stuck with it. I now that depression is genetic, my pa, me (though there were extenuating circumstances) and two sons. Without entering into a war between the sexes, I think it's worse for the man. I think it was an Australian Prime Minister who resigned due to depression which 'inspired' a lot more guys to seek help. In most cases, the man is the breadwinner (wife may have a career) and is generally the provider of the major pension - many are terrified at admitting to a weakness, particularly mental - so they work until the crash. In our generation the man WAS the kingpin, went to war, mended the house, last bastion in disciplining the children. Depression, before much was known about it, WAS regarded as female - puberty sulks, hormonal changes in pregnancy and after, PMD and PND, menopause. Few women avoid any mood changes through that lot. I am horribly depressed at the moment, but it's exogenous? A couple of nights' sleep and a cheerful remark in the morning and I'll be fine (ish). It would appear that full 'recovery' is not possible, it's our make-up, our persona, we control the 'extremes' with drugs or doctors, and learn to live with it. Many famous people, Spike Milligan being one of the best known, went 'out of control' at times. When I was treated as bi-polar (said before, mistake not discovered until I was 50) our GP tried every possible remedy - all had awful side effects, Lithium, I think, made me violent. Then we discovered I only had one kidney, my doctor said 'we (note the WE) are on our own to learn to live with it, all drugs are potentially dangerous'. I did continue to eat Vallium by the handful. The understanding of those around you is vital - so tough in a family situation. And the bitterest pill is that you are 'labelled'. My husband WAS supportive, but ever since, if we've had a tough time and I fall to bits (this pre alzheimer) he cannot conceive that we may have a mutual problem. My entire behaviour can be blamed on my 'moods', stick it out and 'normality' will return. Be interesting (if anybody will admit) how many people suffer from being 'labelled' bi-polar, and treated like lepers? Going gardening, ferociously (as our priest describes it when I use it as a tool against angst).

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:19pm

Gardener, As usual, you have given us all so much to think about. I agree there are people who are/were mislabelled as bipolar and other names. However, a few years ago I said to one of the top psychiatrists in Australia on bipolar that maybe bipolar was being over diagnosed. He said that it was being under diagnosed as most people only seek help when depressed and not when manic. I have had the label of bipolar for over 40 years and used to wonder/maybe hope I was mislabelled. My behaviour was so text book, I responded to medication, and I was never treated as a leper. The more the community has been educated the more understanding I have had. This is just my experience. I know there are still people here who do not tell others they have a mental illness. "the understanding of those around you is vital" that is so true. Ferocious gardening- maybe extreme gardening will be the new Olympic sport. I do extreme mopping for therapy which amuses my partner as I am usually allergic to domestic chores!! Hugs to Gardener( wrote higs- so higs and hugs) from down under.

The Gardener Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 2:01pm

Apologies to Jacqueline above, had not read her reply before starting to write

Ruth Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 2:10pm

I love doing jigsaws. It's very difficult to focus on anything except what you are doing. I have three beautiful cats who are more sensitive than most humans. Every now again they try my patience and play footballers with the pieces. Some days I laugh and pick them up. Others I am overwhelmed and sit down. At the moment my resilience is very low. It's hard to know which chair the cats have chosen to kick the pieces under. If the chairs were marked, happiness, resilience it would be easier to pick which one to check under. I don't know how to find resilience. This is my first post. I hope I haven't breached any sort of etiquette.

susan Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 3:07pm

Hi Ruth, your comment is relevant and so welcome. Even though you don't think you know where to find resilience, i'd like to suggest that it is found in the jigsaws. It's in your ability to focus on what you are doing. There is no past or future there, only the strength of the moment. I haven't done a jigsaw in a while. Thanks for reminding me that they're a helpful way to focus, and fun! xx

Bearofliddlebrain Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 4:49pm

Welcome have breached no etiquette here, m'dear...don't think we really have any apart from reading the blogs, understanding and replying with relevant comments, which you have done so well. My MIL always did jigsaws and found them so absorbing and also said they make you concentrate so that you cannot be thinking of other things!! Dinner would often be late!! Lol! Be kind to yourself and stroke the kitties for comfort and warmth, Bear x

LillyPet Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:43pm

Hi Ruth! Welcome from another nearly newbie! :) You've reminded me too of how nice it is to do jigsaws. Must treat myself to one! Your cats sound adorable. Maybe you don't have to search unless you feel like it. I also didnt think I had rescillience, I'm just noticing in hindsight each time I find that I have picked up the pieces. LP :)

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:24pm

Ruth, welcome.Susan, Bear and Lily have said it well. I look forward to more comments from you. I had to smile when you wrote "If the chairs were marked, happiness, resilience it would be easier to pick which one to check under." That is such a wonderful idea- would make life so much easier. Thanks again for replying and keep enjoying the jigsaws.

Anonymous Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 2:32pm

Thank you, Leah for your insightful blog post. I feel uncomfortable with the word recovery because it also feels like it means you're back to "normal" once and for all. I agree with you that the word resilience is much more appropriate with mental health issues. I know my depression is more a chronic condition that I've had to learn to manage so that I can be as stable as much as possible. Trying to keep my head above water is a daily struggle. Recovery seems like an impossible dream. Resilience to weather the periodic storms is more do-able. Thanks again for reminding me of the difference.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:26pm

Anon 2.32pm Thanks for your thoughtful comment. "trying to keep my head above water is a daily struggle" Many can relate to that. The positive is you are trying. I am glad the word resilience helps you as it has helped me.

Dave Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 3:10pm

It is interesting that last night at our NAMI meeting we each tried to define normal and noone could really do so....or we each did so differently...I guess it is a state of mind within a state of mind that we all strive for....thanks for the blog and useful comments

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:28pm

Dave, Thanks for reminding us that everyone has a different idea of what 'normal' is and many feel they will never attain it.

Tim Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 3:11pm

"Recovery" here sounds like "better". That wonderful nglish ambiguity, between everything and nothing. Quite. That's another one. "Are you better?" asks if you consider yourself cured or improved. Can you be cured of life? The cynics say yes ... when you die. I say Yes, but by improving. By getting better.

LillyPet Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:14pm

I definately choose to agree with you Tim (rather the cynics)

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:30pm

Tim, Thanks for your comments. I like the idea of improving. It is true sometimes we look at words as meaning all or nothing rather than being somewhere in between.

Anonymous Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 4:01pm

Great post! I feel exactly the same Leah, it's about knowing your triggers and then putting things in place to help you get through the dark times/moments. Having had pnd and then depression I feel I know myself better than ever and I'm still learning therefore I wouldn't class myself as recovered. We all have different expectations of what normal is like lost boy said, I myself don't actually know any 'normal' people it's our quirks that complete us.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:32pm

Anon,4.01pm Thanks for your personal post and insights. Knowledge of oneself is so crucial. I don't think I know any normal people either. Far more interesting and surprising.

Amanda Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 4:28pm

Recovery and normal ... what a lot of food for thought. Ok, so my take: normal for me is all the ups and downs. They are all normal, they are part of my life. There are times when I feel relatively well, odd days when I fell really well, and other times when I feel quite ill. Resiience for me is being able to accept tham all as part of the pattern of my life, learning to look at the times when I am not well, and unpicking the reasons (when I can) and working out what I am going to go do get myeslf feeling more well. Above all, not being hard on myself when I am ill, because that just makes it worse and hinders any recovery / return to wellness.

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:35pm

Amanda Thanks you have given me ideas to think about and relate to. "Above all, not being hard on myself when I am ill, because that just makes it worse and hinders any recovery / return to wellness." I can really relate to your words above, and I still need to learn that lesson. Thanks for reminding me.

Bearofliddlebrain Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 4:53pm

Leah, just thought of another R word: resistance! In the great Star Trek series the Borg say 'Resistance is Futile!' And there are hours, days and weeks where resistance to depression is futile...we need to be kinder to ourselves, cry if we need to (done that today!) and just go with it! Bear x

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:37pm

Bear, I have never been into Star trek and Star Wars have offended people by lumping the two together!! Amanda above also mentioned about being kinder to ourselves, it is so important, Thanks again for your input.

LillyPet Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 7:06pm

A really thought provoking blog Leah! I agree with Amanda normal to me means what is normal for me! I recognise the familiar feeling of waking up and immediately knowing that I feel ok ( which I am always thankful for), still tired, really low or ready to seize the day. Some occur more often than others and that varies through the seasons, episodes, circumstances/decisions ( I like that too Anon!) health and how much I look after myself but all are normal for me. When one day I came in from the garden on a sunny day and sobbed to my sister and subsequently GP that I was feeling REALLY low and didn't know why, what I meant was that it wasnt normal for me and didnt feel like my usual lows. Both of them suggested it might be to do with me trying to loose weight by almost completely cutting out carbs ( definately don't try that at home!) I certainly am wiser for having had that experience.
Resillience I didnt learn as a young child. Being over protected from the outside world but the opposite at home taught me powerlessness and i am learning about resillience more consciously each time I do "get back up".
Recovery for me doesn't mean healed or cured. To me it means healing from a period of illness or injury that is outside of my own normality. To recouperate (another r word!) and return to what is normal for me whether or not I may suffer it again the future. I can only speak for myself but I am an optimist and do think that as we learn from each other and from experience things can improve, but to what degree depends on all manner of variables!
Bit of a long post guys but great to have thought it through! Thank you Leah and everyone. Thinking of you Bear. Big hugs TG Xx

Leah Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 9:41pm

Lilypet, Thanks so much for your honest and helpful comments. I am pleased with another R word- thanks!! "Recovery for me doesn't mean healed or cured. To me it means healing from a period of illness or injury that is outside of my own normality" I think your words will resonate with many moodscopers. Again it is that theme of self awareness. I appreciate you sharing your thoughts.

the room above the garage Fri, Oct 9th 2015 @ 10:20pm

Wow, what a busy day of replies in here. Leah this is a great blog, recovery for me is definitely learning and becoming better at identifying and wrestling. I have no doubt that one day I will say I fought a battle rather than I continue to fight. Really enjoyed your writing, love ratg x

Leah Sat, Oct 10th 2015 @ 1:38am

Ratg, thanks for your contribution. I have a vision of you wrestling with your 12 coats on! I like your conviction one day the battle will be over. I think I'll still be travelling to the end never reaching the holy grail but overcoming any potholes or loose gravel.(Have I included enough mixed metaphors!)

the room above the garage Sat, Oct 10th 2015 @ 10:51pm

I like it all, plenty mixed metaphors why not! 12 coats yes, I do feel the cold...I know you'll be hitting early summer where you are and I'm dreaming...

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What is Moodscope?

Moodscope members seek to support each other by sharing their experiences through this blog. If you’d like to receive these daily posts by email, just sign up to Moodscope now, completely free of charge.

Moodscope is an innovative way for people to treat their own low mood problems using an engaging online tool. Anyone in the world can accurately assess and track daily mood scores over a period of time. We have proved that the very act of measuring, tracking and sharing mood can actually lift it. Join now.

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Posts and comments on the Moodscope blog are the personal views of Moodscope members, they are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice. Moodscope makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this blog or found by following any of the links.

Moodscope will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.

We exist to help people to positively manage their moods. You can contribute by taking the test, sharing your experience on the blog or contributing funds so we can keep it free for all who need it.

Moodscope® is © Moodscope Ltd 2018. Developed from scales which are © 1988 American Psychological Association. Cannot be reproduced without express written permission of APA.