Tag: mood symptom treatment

One step at a time toward mental wellness

My turtle

When I was young, I had a turtle in an aquarium in my room.  It didn’t move around too much but when it did, I’d watch as it slowly swam about, occasionally pulling itself up onto the little rock that served as it’s island, in search of food.

picture of 2 turtles walking one step at a time
Photo by Immortal shots on Pexels.com

One step at a time toward mental wellness

It took my psychiatrist almost a year and a half to stabilize me on medications for my mood swings. That is not a very unusual amount of time but it sucked.  I know how I survived.  For those 18 months, I regressed on the evolutionary scale and became a primitive reptilian creature.  My brain’s cortex vanished and during that time, my deep, reflexive, subcortical brain structures automatically took over.  That little turtle hatchling, swimming toward some unseen rock was who I became.  I did not have a single sophisticated thought in my head about what awaited me that day or the next.  

The fog lifts and my treatment worked

Quite simply, survival was deep in my DNA.   Without any reflection or plan, I did nothing more than show up every day.  That’s all I did.  After this interminably long time period, the fog lifted, the waters became clear and I finally felt better.  My treatment worked.

All we can do is paddle through our waters when relief can’t be found, when comfort eludes us and when inner peace is nowhere around. We can summon our courage, take a leap of faith and simply put one flipper in front of the other, each day, every day and swim on. One step at a time toward mental wellness.

Do you find that one step at a time is the way to go go or…big.leaps?