Boot Straps


This is the blog post I was so hoping I wouldn’t have to write. The one where I admit temporary defeat and throw up the white flags in surrender to all that is me…that part that hides away sometimes in a new mask and a new disguise ….but is always there just under the surface ready to rear her ugly head. The depressed/highly BPD part, I’ll call her Prudence. I always identified with that Beatles song. “Dear Prudence, won’t you come out to play. Dear Prudence, greet the brand new day.” I always try to get that part of me, the Prudence part to enjoy the sunshine, smile a bit, be grateful. But, Prudence likes to hide in the shadows and crevices. And when she sees a crack, a tiny sliver…..BOOM!!! There she is again.

With this new found energy, health streak, life changing momentum I was riding on, I thought I was impenetrable. I thought I had built up enough happiness that nothing, not even Prudence could break down those walls. But, the past few months have been the highest highs and the lowest lows. My diet stalled a bit. Yes, I’ve lost about 22 pounds…….YAY ME!! BUT…..and this is key….I let myself down. I cheated here and there…I didn’t dedicate myself to exercise. I gave in too many times and now I’m stalled. I had gained back about 7 pounds and so far, since this Monday, I have lost that weight. I am back on my diet pretty strict again and on my supplements. But, I let myself down. 

The construction on the house has hit some big snags and we are currently running about 3 weeks behind schedule. I know, not a huge deal, but living in this oblivion, sleeping in the basement with my two teenage sons, using the garage as a closet/dressing room, having most of my belongings in storage, is very difficult for me. My BPD makes living in chaos a living nightmare. As I always say, I need order outside of my head—in the real world around me—because my brain is in a constant state of chaos. It balances me. And when that balance is out of order….all hell breaks lose in Allisonland. 

This too shall pass. I know. But, it is so difficult to not give into the dark hole that Prudence tends to pull me into. I remember watching a nature show with my son about these reptiles and creatures that live caves. They have evolved so they don’t need sunlight or even eyesight to survive. They have adapted so well to the dark environment, that through evolution, they have lost their eyes altogether. I feel like those creatures sometimes. I feel like I have adapted and gotten used to the darkness I regularly fall into, that the good, the light, the happiness, is a foreign planet to me. The sun hurts my eyes, so I retreat to that crack in the cavern wall where I feel most at home.  

My husband, the most patient and understanding man I’ve ever met, tries very very hard to understand this part of me. But, he doesn’t. He doesn’t get depression. As much as I could never understand his ADHD. The other night, I pretty much lost it. I hold up as much as I can for him, for my boys, for my parents. But, she came out. Prudence wanted to play. And I let her go in all her melancholy glory. “Pick yourself up by the bootstraps he said.” UGH!!! First of all, I would never wear boots with bootstraps and second of all, when Prudence is out, she’s barefoot….no boots on those feet. I understand he was trying to help. But, saying that …. just enticed me even more. He knows how to deal with her better than anyone ever has. So, I asked myself, what should he have said? I have no response. I really wish I did.

So, after that meltdown, I’m trying to get back on track. Diet is doing well. I’m doing as much exercise as I can muster and I’m trying really hard to look at the end game and not just each individual move I make on a daily basis. I’m trying to appreciate the small things and find something, anything to smile about each day. Maybe the next time Prudence wants to come out to play, she’ll bring some margaritas and board games.


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