A year in the life of self harm freedom

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18th February 2017 marks a year since I last self harmed.

As much as I would like to sit here and write that it has been plain sailing and I have never thought about it and it’s been one of the easiest years. But that would be a lie. It’s been hard. Not all the time, sometimes it’s been manageable but the times where it was really hard, somehow outweigh the days and weeks where it was not so hard.There have been times when recovery has felt like the hardest thing to do, and hurting myself would have been the easier option. When it feels as though the easiest thing to do would to revert back to my old habits and pick up a blade. But I didn’t. When one of the most important aspects of recovery is constantly working to be okay with yourself, as you are in the present, as you are in this moment. In this moment when the world isn’t asking anything from you, but needs you to stay. The world needs you in it.

It might not seem like a big deal to some people, but to me it’s huge. Its something I never thought I’d be able to quit, it became an addiction in a way, it became my learnt behaviour on what to do if I felt sad, stressed or any type of overwhelming emotion. And I just needed to feel some pain and be hurt that is what I would do. One of the hardest things is remembering I am worth more than harming myself, and so are you. That is perhaps one of the hardest things to believe, especially when my depression is telling me all sorts of lies and I cant think of anything other than hurting myself, I have to remind myself that I am worth more than this. Remind myself that people love me and care for me, that God loves me, maybe healing comes whenever we can finally admit we cant do it on our own. And maybe there is strength in only uttering the words ‘help me’ to a God who can bring such beauty out of our ugliness and such healing out of our brokenness.

Recovery is possible; it might not always feel like it. There are days when I have to choose recovery over and over, sometimes several times a day. Recovery is possible, hope is possible. You are worth more than harming yourself, so am I.

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