Recovering from mental illness is no straight line. It’s a rollercoaster of good days and bad. This instability can be too much for most to bear, your mind will seek the negative side of everything, as though you’ve never felt well.

Trying to remind yourself that you have had good days, even if they were months ago, seems like an impossible task when that dark fog descends and you can’t see anything else.

I’ve had periods of really poor mental health, and periods of okay if not good mental health, but when I struggle, those good days fade away and my mind tells me they never happened, and never will. This is a dangerous place to be in your head, you lose the ability to believe that you’ll ever see the light again.

If I had to pick one skill that helped me to cope with my mental health, it would be the power to override these thoughts, to be able, even in my darkest times, to remind myself that I have felt well and can feel well again. If I had this, I could pull myself out of these slumps and maybe my lifetime struggle with my mental health won’t feel like one step forward and two steps back.

The dips I have in my mental health all roll into one when I am in a bad place, I believe the lies that I’ll never recover from my mental illness and I believe in that final solution that seems to be an almost constant undertone in my thoughts. When I am coping, like at the moment, I have the ability to recognise these as lies, even if it takes me a while to convince myself.

All I wish is to rewrite the idea of recovery in my head, the idea that it is and always will be, one step forward, two steps back.

Stay safe, K.