"Courage is fear that has said its prayers."
One Day at a Time in Al-Anon
"The first thing to do is to admit to ourselves that we're afraid. The second is to find out why."
Answers In The Heart, January 19
What I have found through my experience with domestic violence and psychosis is that fear distorts reality. When I was with my addicted boyfriend, I would anticipate all kinds of coming problems and act accordingly. I would not give him the benefit of the doubt. And I know there were times when he was full of good intentions and I was blind to see it because I was motivated by fear. I knew I was afraid of him and I knew why I was afraid of him, but I allowed the fear to take control and direct my attitudes and actions. My fear blocked me from reaching out to him and to others, blocked me from changing the direction of our relationship.
My fear while experiencing acute psychosis also distorted reality, fed my delusions and controlled my attitudes and actions. I did admit to fear when I felt it, but I didn't always know why I was afraid. There was no one in my life; it was all inside my head and the voices kept shifting and expressing different points of view. And, of course, the voices worked hard to encourage me towards accepting the delusional story lines.
I've been learning lately to rely on prayer. I turn my will and my life over to God when I say my prayers in the morning and I reassert that orientation repeatedly throughout the day and night when I ask for direction, when I say thank you. When a fear comes up, I pray. When I pray, I let go and let God come in and help me.
A Recovery Blog
This blog is about my continuing recovery from severe mental illness. I celebrate this recovery by continuing to write, by sharing my music and artwork and by exploring Buddhist ideas and concepts. I claim that the yin/yang symbol is representative of all of us because I have found that even in the midst of acute psychosis there is still sense, method and even a kind of balance. We are more resilient than we think. We can cross beyond the edge of the sane world and return to tell the tale. A deeper kind of balance takes hold when we get honest, when we reach out for help, when we tell our stories.