Never give up on the recovery journey

I was chatting with my good friend Bill. He said, “Amy, did you tell me you were cured of bipolar disorder?” To which I responded, ” Unfortunately no. I’m on a lifelong recovery journey. Sometimes I have set-backs, but I keep on moving.” He smiled and said, ” we are all on that journey.”

If I’ve learned anything about recovery I’ve learned you can never give up. Sure, there will be set-backs. In fact there are just times when I just don’t feel good as a mortal human being. But people around me not understanding how bipolar works think, “Oh my gosh, is she depressed? Manic? Irritable? Must be an episode.”

That’s all part of recovery too. Learning to validate your feelings even when those around you want to blame your reality or emotions on a mental illness. You see those of us with mental illness don’t get a lot of latitude when it comes to emotions. You learn this the more you recover.

Recovery is for sure not a destination. If it were a highway or road it would be the highest mountainous dirt road you could find overlooking the ocean cliffs. There are bends in the road and you must make the turns. Eventually you get off the mountain for a while and the highway gets monotonous and flat. The challenge can sometimes be to enjoy those times.

I learned about a mental health advocate who was a psychologist who had schizophrenia. He survived being institutionalized under horrendous circumstances for over ten years. The medical outlook for him was bleak. Yet Dr. Frese escaped from the hospital, eventually put himself through college and turned around and helped hundreds of people who were in institutions just like him.

He recovered from those circumstances. I’m still amazed by his story and very sorry I never had the chance to meet him. He passed away a couple of years ago. May you Rest In Peace Fred Frese.

Wherever you are in your own mental health journey or perhaps a loved ones, know that recovery is real.

Never give up hope. Never give up on a person’s journey to recover.

Amy Gamble

4 thoughts on “Never give up on the recovery journey

  1. Amy I’ve been on this recovery journey for many years I’ve been fighting the good fight of faith and try to stay positive although I have my ups and downs with my mental illness i’m thankful that I have medication that I can take that helps my symptoms or who knows where I would be Being in the hospital from the time I was 25 numerous times And my support system has Greatly grown Because of your advocacy I’m slowly but surely learning to open up and share about my mental illness starting with this is my brave has helped me a great deal into realize I’m not alone which I felt like I was for many years I still at times feel that way I want you to know I read all your blogs and they do help God is using you in a special way and it shows your love for people I want you to know that I do love you you’ve made a difference in my life.

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