More than a Label

Today I have reached a milestone in my recovery journey.  I no longer think of myself as mentally ill.  Oh yes, I still have to live with bipolar disorder and manage it, but I have been enjoying a period of sustainable wellness.  To be honest, I never thought this day would happen.

For several years I battled very severe depression with brief moments of manic episodes, but none that were ever enjoyable.  I fought countless days to function and wondered if I would ever become a contributing member of society again.  Well, the days have arrived.

In this recovery journey I have read numerous articles about people who got sick and then got well and moved on with their lives.  I could see it was possible, but I did not know if it would be possible for me.  But now here I am.

Because of where I have evolved too, I no longer feel the need to write about pain and sorrow.  I am not drawn to write about my past demons.  I am at peace with my past and so it shall stay there.

But what I hope to do is write about how I have recovered.  The ins and outs the ups and downs.  The journey has been nothing short of a miracle and at any time along the way I could have chosen to give up.  But…I didn’t.  That’s the biggest secret and it is obvious….you can’t give up no matter how tough it is and how much it hurts.  You must persevere and continue to expect a good outcome.

So I am beginning to live my newly created life.  Filled with dreams and possibilities and potential.  I have learned I am so much more than my diagnosis, I am truly beyond bipolar disorder.  Although there was a time in my life when it completely consumed me.  By the grace of God that time is over and that book has ended.

The new book has begun.

If you have a mental illness I want you to know that it is possible to get well.  You can have a satisfying life and contribute to your community.  Believe in the possibilities.  And most importantly don’t give up.  You may be very surprised how things turn out.

12 thoughts on “More than a Label

  1. Oh bless you Amy. You have me in tears as a fellow bipolar sufferer. I too have so many ‘bad’ days, and I also never give up, even when it seems as if the world is about to close in on me. Well done on your journey, long may it last. Well done to you my lovely, truly, continue being so happy x x x

  2. Very positive words, much needed in the mental health community. Congrats on reaching this milestone on your personal journey.

  3. I am very happy for you. I wish you a very fulfilling life and may you find much joy. People need to hear your success because it brings hope to those still struggling. I have been well for one and a half years and like you, I thank God everyday. Bipolar is no joke. It takes work, courage and perseverance.

    1. You are so right about the hard work it takes. There is no doubt about that. I am so glad you are doing well. Congratulations!!! It is a hard won battle. Wishing you well.

  4. Amy I am so happy that you keep working and growing. I have been working since 1992 and each day is a journey. Making good choices everyday is loving yourself and others. We can’t help others if we don’t take care of ourselves. Helping others along the way is so important and you do that very well with your writing. It is so good you have hope, dreams and trust in God.

  5. GREAT article. I love Mental Health Awareness Month because there are so many people talking about the crying need to stop stigma. Hope everybody reads Obama’s inspiring MHA Month Proclamation – and will hop around the web supporting as many MHA Month posts as they are able. (Comments & likes help posts get seen – and posts like this one are SO important)

    FYI: I linked this post as Related Content in my 2016 MHA Month post: The importance of a Diagnosis – Name it to Tame it. I hope you’ll have some time to check it out.
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

    1. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I checked out your site and all I can say is WOW! So much great information. Enjoyed your article. Curious about your peer coaching business sounds terrific.

      1. You’re welcome, and thank you so much for your lovely words about my work.

        As a result of a spate of troubling events in my personal life, I was forced to decide to seriously “downsize” my practice. The Peer Coaching Workshops are not currently being offered – but I hope to be able to put them back in place before too much longer.

        Too many people who really need EFD-aware coaches can’t afford coaching of *any* sort. I put together a “basic training” in peer coaching technique so they could trade “services” with each other – forever, or until things improved to the point where professional coaching could be a realistic option.

        We do what we can, right?

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