It’s not U it’s Ur Illness

So I’m in therapy with C last week, talking about this awful depressive state I’ve been in for awhile. I said it feels like something just takes over and smothers me.

C looks at me for a quick second then says well that’s because this is exactly what is happening. It’s not you, it’s your illness. Like a fever is not you, it’s an illness right? This is not. You. This. Is. Your. Illness.

CLICK. you mean I’m not totally fucked in the head, there’s a Me that is separate from all the shit that’s in my head? Yes, exactly. That is what your illness is. The fear, the heartbreaking sadness, the panic/anxiety. That’s. Not. You.

Wow. So just like if I had the ‘flu and I go to the grocery store to get Nyquil or whatever. Treat it. This is the same thing? C says well it’s abit more complex than the ‘flu of course but the principle applies.

Wow, this completely changes the dynamic between this cPTSD Dissociation blah blah and my head.

I have always thought of myself as being just a total whackjob. That I am harming myself or I should be locked away because there is something just too wrong with ME. I am the mess. I am responsible not for what happened to me perhaps but how I have been unable to handle it well.

But this idea that it’s something that is outside my humanity. It makes so much more sense to fight it now. CBT has a framework that I finally understand. So when I get a panic attack I can say this is not me. Self-hatred, you no longer belong. I can say panic you are part of the sickness that was brought on by a bad bunc of people in my kid life. Stop it. Breathe meditate run paint play piano do whatever else.

It’s a wicked cool perspective for me. Pf course I have to wonder why this has never come up before. Smartass me says why have I paid out well over two hundred G’s and nobody has ever explained this to me? C says well probably because they didn’t know you as well as I do. My therapists of five years? Ten years? C says well that can be true. We click and I know what I’m doing. I can tell you’re a cool chick, maybe they didn’t see that.

Grr Whatever I know she’s right about that. This isn’t important. What matters is that I am able to truly set myself free.

Because it’s not me, it’s my illness.

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