A-Z Challenge: L is for Life

Well, I have been negligent in writing of late and I have vowed to make more effort this month to blog and keep blogging, to make the most of my WordPress account and to stay in touch with my followed and followers!

What has got in the way of my writing?  Well, life I’m afraid!  SO much has happened since I last blogged, the main two things being: I got a job, and I moved in with my girlfriend!

My job?  It seems almost ironic after some of the things I have been through but I am now, officially, a Mental Health Support Worker.  I work for a charity in supported accommodation for people with severe and chronic mental health conditions.  I absolutely love the job.  Sometimes it is hard, knowing that I have experienced similar things to some of our residents.  Other times, that makes it all the easier, having the empathy to support others.  It gets me thinking a lot about the ideas of community and recovery: as I have written here before, the notion of recovery is one that I sometimes find it difficult to get my head around.  When you have a lasting mental health condition, one for which there is support and treatment but no actual cure, no destination to the journey, what does recovery truly mean?  They say it’s a journey, not a destination.  That recovery is a path chosen by the individual with the problem, a path walked but not terminating in a specific place.  A continuous cycle, sometimes of relapse, sometimes of being “better”, whatever that means for the person involved.  I understand that- I do- but there is a huge difference between recovery (e.g. from the flu) and recovery (e.g. from alcoholism) that sometimes leaves me confused as to what recovery truly means.  In any case, recovery is something we are encouraged to help our residents work towards: recovery from mental illness in terms of leading what can be called “productive” lives.  “Ordinary” lives.  Perhaps the day-to-day grind of an ordinary life: working, eating, reproducing, is what recovery is.  To live in a way that is accepted/ acceptable to others without the same problems.  To cultivate happiness, to restore stability, to resist relapse, yes, to be acceptable by living on society’s terms.  And that acceptability is not a bad thing, of course it isn’t.  But what does it really mean?  Where are the boundaries we have to cross?

In other news, L could also be for Love.  I am now living with the person I love, in a house-share with some cool other people.  In a big room, with our own bathroom.  In love.

What else can I say about love?

I used to be a serial cheat.  For whatever reason: for attention, for  the sensation of being wanted, for the sensation of being loved when I wasn’t getting that satisfaction from what were, truly, some quite unsatisfactory relationships.  That phase of my life is over.  The relationship is balanced, equal, and I have no reason to look elsewhere to be needed.  I know I am.  This, for me now, is what love is: balance, trust, trustworthiness.  Yeah… I’m really happy at the moment.

So that’s life!  What should I write about for “M”?  All suggestions welcomed.


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