There was a time when my mental health got to the point I had memory gaps. I was in a rapid decline and aware of it. I had a disabled boyfriend who took care of me, instead of the other way around. I didn’t trust doctors anymore. I knew if I didn’t pull myself up, no one would. I knew I had to do something to get my life back. I believed if I landed in the hospital I would never again see the light of day. Fear was an incredible motivational force within me for the next several years.
I started learning how to live healthy. I figured that I can’t have a healthy mind if I don’t have a healthy body first. I focused my days on working out, eating right, and educating myself… with the 1 goal of saving my own sanity before it was too late. I lost 75 lbs. Then I focused on changing my mental health. I started with positive affirmations written on index cards. After some time, it was working. Now I have people telling me I am an inspiration. It’s very humbling.
My Pastor also helped me realize in my quest for a healthy mind and body, I was forgetting a 3rd and vital aspect – my spiritual health. Over the years I had been given a number of diagnosis’, but during that summer of 2010 that I was finally given a proper diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder – Type II. Plus, my healthy eating plan taught me certain foods were triggering some mood swings. Certain processed foods, artificial sweeteners, and fat-free foods give me bad Bipolar episodes. Other foods like berries, almonds, and spinach help to keep my moods up. I have started a book project (that is yet to be given a title) outlining my whole healthy living journey. I’ve also finally found a good medication regimen that is working.
Pastor led me through the process of forgiveness. Which, as it turned out, I have found to be vital for my own mental health. For the first time I understood it. I forgave my abusers, the childhood friends that hurt me, and others. The bad dreams finally stopped. It was all gone. He also helped me realize in my quest for a healthy mind and body, I was forgetting a 3rd and vital aspect – my spiritual health. This was more than a light bulb moment. It was whole Christmas tree – with the flashers on! There are 3 parts to health; body, mind, and spirit. If one is not healthy, all 3 will suffer.
Now, I’m happy. I have BPD, but I’m functioning well. I live alone and I’m independent for the first time. Plus, I’m starting a new career as a writer and speaker. My motto has always been “Don’t ever give up.” You may have bad days, weeks, or months; but as long as you keep putting one foot in front of the other, you will not fail! Do not ever quit! You are worth the effort.
by Carley Cooper; Blog Websites: Worship Melodies and Tin Roof Sundae. Also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter.