Are there ways that disability affects your self-perception?
Good afternoon everyone!
Man, these questions are really testing my willingness to look deep inside and add them to the list of things I need to accept about myself.
As I see it, my self-perception based on my mental illness can be divided between my time in the Midwest and the East Coast. At least that’s what I tell myself. In reality it is a gradient: no acceptance to absolute acceptance of every part of who I am.
I am slowly accepting parts and pieces of me. Bits, shards, scraps and grains sorted into different folders depending on immediacy. Fear of rejection and classification are still there, but now my emotional responses ebb and flow driven by my depression and anxiety. I am still learning how to breathe.
Yesterday I listened to a DBT video on how to accept the squeeze in my throat each time my anxiety shows up. Then I was invited to poke, prod and visually stretch it while it sat there. I’m happy to announce that not only did I survive, but nothing bad happened in that time. Really wish I could measure my self-perception before/after the video. I think it has grown a few inches over the last year 😀
It’s very important to take care of yourself, as you would a precious child or lover. Pay attention to your emotions throughout the day–those are the hardest parts to accept. If you need help breathing like I do, let me know and I will share a few resources with you 🙂
“She may have looked normal on the outside, but once you’d seen her handwriting you knew she was deliciously complicated inside.” – Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot
Every Monday I answer a question about my disability from Redefining Disability, a creation of Rose b. Fischer. I do this in order to continue my healing process as well as to do my part in facilitating an open dialogue about disabilities. Thank you for listening. If you want to share your story, please join us!