I believe that recovery is possible. Not just for me, but for EVERYONE. Does this mean that everyone recovers? No, because not everyone is taught the skills to recover. Also, once a person learns the skills, they have to choose to use them. My peer specialist colleagues and I can give you a flashlight so that you can see your way out of the darkness of mental illness.
I've lost the false sense of ease and naivety that led me to believe that every person I met should be my friend and would have my best interest at heart, because that's just not true. Relearning how to communicate, how to engage in supportive relationships and be there for my friends and loved ones hasn't been easy, but it sure beats believing I'm besties with my drug dealer.
As a healthcare advocate and former ICU patient who has been transferred throughout the many divisions of the healthcare system, I would like to say "Thank you" to healthcare providers and all hospital personnel for choosing this path in life and for all that you do each day for your patients and their families.
Last night, I saw a picture of myself at CrossFit on a friend's Facebook page: I am mid-deadlift and my growing muscles strain at the weight. My expression is one of intensity and fear. Will I die? Not anymore. I'm certain that after I set the bar on the ground, as always, my muscles trembled with the righteous fatigue of joy.
We can brush aside the harsh reality that is mental illness. We can reduce it to that -- just a harsh reality. Or we can work to help one another understand. To create clarity and enlightenment to not only provide much-needed support, but to prevent further mental illness, like these deadly eating disorders.