The Balancing Act

I think that all growth and healing takes more time than we allow.

It's scary to not be okay. We want to be healthy, happy, and our best versions at all times. This year has been a time for me to embrace being
not okay; being unwell, and having to deal with it.

There's happiness, joy, fun, and I'm keeping busy. But there's also sadness at times, and moments where I slip up and am not the version of myself I'm trying to be. I spent a year being enabled by a problem drinker with an equally addictive personality, and I think what's helped my growth the most has been forgiving them. They were good at their core and meant no wrong.

That doesn't mean I'm without my own remorse that needs forgiving. But distance from triggers and certain character types has helped me tremendously. The worst thing about the characters I've known is that they come from cultures that demonize mental health issues - it's the catalyst for denial, and I adopted it.

I spent a lot of my life not thinking about my mental health as a problem, just something I lived with. I didn't realize other people were living with the
fallout; I didn't consider myself ever in the wrong, or as an emotionally harmful sort. Now, I've been learning and reflecting on what I can only call, at times, villainy. I'm a flawed person. I don't have magical powers or the capacity to brain wash people into loving me: I'm damaged just enough to attract equally flawed people. Hence, my year long fall to rock bottom. I barely have control of my own mind, let alone others.

Enabled or not, nobody made me do anything or behave any way. And saying I'm brainwashed is shirking responsibility for my own actions.

A lot of my problems can be blamed for my broken brain - I'm a legitimate psycho - but I'm also healthy enough to do something about it, and I didn't until this year; So it's on me.

Words I try to avoid include "moderation" and "balance". They're words I used when I was too weak to abstain and commit. Some people can vow to love forever and then quit; try to write creatively, and quit; draw, and quit; try to be sober, and quit; and at the end of the day be a "sometimes" this and that; to never truly finish, or go all the way they; can't commit.

I want to be an "all the time" good person who knows and admits what's wrong with them; not someone who heals a lifetime of pain and mental problems in less than a year; That's simply not possible. I have a long road ahead and the first step is accepting that.

My name is Andrew: I have an addictive personality; My Tourettes, OCD, and depression make me irritable, intense, and antagonistic when I don't medicate and breathe. I am a broken person who will never be perfect, but can constantly try to be better to myself, and to other people.

It's going to take a lot of time until I'm truly "okay".
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