"Dr, I want my brain back"
But I didn't actually use those words. But that's what I meant.
Interestingly enough, over the two plus years I saw my psychiatrist I don't think I ever called him Doctor, or called him by his name. Dr Ahmed, his name is Dr Ahmed. The receptionists at Cavendish House are called Mary and Tracey. My care co-ordinator was called Danny, my psychologist was called Gillian. This all seems important now.
Last Tuesday I had my discharge appointment, from now on my medication will be managed by my GP. I have finally reached a point in my life where my mental health is not a detriment to my life. I am no longer 'ill', and it feels fantastic.
Being thrust into a room full of others with the same diagnosis as me, on a weekly basis for just short of a year was a massive turning point. Without going into too much detail, I did not like the reflection. I did not want to be grouped into this group of individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder. I was embarrassed. There is A LOT of misinformation and disparaging remarks about BPD online. It's an illness that attacks the identity, the self esteem. When our identity is rocked, we'll cling on to a label but I never wanted my identity to be my illness, I wanted to divorce myself from that stereotype, that image.
Wether that separation of myself and illness was a healthy coping mechanism or not, it worked for me. No longer did I want anything to do with the mental health system. What they neglect to tell you, at times, is that when unwell with a mental illness there can be an element of pride. I cut the worst, I do the most damage to myself, my life is more fucked up than yours. None of that is beautiful and none of that is healthy and none of that is attractive.
Although there is a romance in the rise and fall of living a roller-coaster life, there is romance in being healthy too. I would not go as far as to say "I'm recovered". I'm not going to make promises that I'll never self-harm, or try to kill myself, or end up in a psych ward ever again, but I really hope I don't. I'm not saying that the hard work is done.
I didn't get here on my own either, I've already spoken to those closest, those who saw the worst of it. I thanked them profusely, without them, and without the NHS I would, more than likely be dead, and that's weird to realise.
Either way, I am here, I am breathing, I am living. I bought myself a new plant and some Gerbera, because apparently extra large house plants and colourful flowers are the perfect way to celebrate being discharged from secondary services.