My brain is a battleground.
Black dog: What’s the point in getting up? I don’t want another day.
BPD: I feel like sh*t. It hurts. Everything hurts.
Me: C’mon guys, we have to move. I know it hurts, but let’s just move ok? This will pass.
Black dog: Why?
Me: Hi Dog, I’m not going to feed you today. C’mon BPD let’s find something happy.
Black dog: Hey, I’ve lived here for a long time. I’m not going anywhere. Come back into the darkness with me. It’s easy. So easy … come back.
BPD: Yeah Dog. This is all sooo hard. No-one understands us. No-one wants us. No-one loves us. They’ve all abandoned us.
Black dog: Yup. Exactly what we deserve. We are unlovable.
BPD: I wish I could be loved. I love everybody! Why don’t they love me?
Black dog: Coz you’re a bad person. You hurt people. You ain’t worth shi*t. You know that.
Me: No, guys. You have no evidence to support that. C’mon let’s get up and I’ll show you. Let’s turn on the computer eh? See what our friends are up to.
Black dog: We don’t have any real friends. Facebook isn’t real. No-one’s actually here are they?
(Turn on computer)
BPD: Yay! Cute puppies and dogs and kitties and positive people! So happy to see you world. Feel like smiling now.
Black dog: Ain’t real.
BPD: Yes they are! Look they’re so cute. Oooh look a motivational message! I can save that. I can print that. I can stick that on my fridge. I’m happy. What’s for breakfast? Let’s interact. Let’s be positive.
Me: Guys … I’m trying to hold on here. Let’s just sit down and meditate eh? Dog I’ve said “Hi” now it’s time for you to go.
Black dog: Take me for a walk BPD.
BPD: Yeah, you n me, we are one.
Me: Dog, go. BPD come and focus with me, you are bouncing around again.
BPD: I’m four.
Me: No, you are just a little confused at the moment. It’s understandable. Come and hold my hand and I’ll give you a hug. I love you, you know. We can get better. I promise.
Black dog: No she doesn’t. You’re unlovable.
BPD: Yeah, I am unlovable. I’m bad. I upset people. People upset me. I’m scared of people. I love people. I want friends. Friends are scary. I hurt! I want to be happy. I can’t be happy.
Black dog: You’re stuffed. Just give up why don’t you?
Me: C’mon, let’s think about something nice eh? Who do we love?
BPD: I love A and B and C and D and ooooh but they don’t really like me do they? Sad. Lonely.
Me: Now let’s close our eyes and think about A shall we? Think about how much we love A. Think about how happy A makes us feel. Think about all the good and fun things we do together. A likes us. A cares for us. A wants us to be ok.
BPD: Well … yeah .. ish.
Me: Close your eyes and focus. Feel this person ok? Smile. Good you’re smiling. A cares about us. I care about us. I am so grateful to have A in our life. Now let’s think about the others eh? Close our eyes and think about each of them. Each of these beautiful people that we love and who care about us. How much love do we feel now? Yeah? Good eh? Believe these people care about us too. Feel it. We are worthy of love. We are so lucky to have these wonderful people who care about us. If they love us, we can love us too. Let’s love us. This is good. I like this.
BPD: Yeah me too. Feels nice. Feelin’ better.
Black dog: Woof?
BPD: Can we have some happy music now? Yes lets!
Me: Great work, well done BPD. Let’s put on some music and do some work eh?
BPD: Can’t we just dance and sing and paint and draw? I feel so happy! I feel so loved! I can leap tall mountains in a single bound! I can take on the world! We are so wonderful! Drawing makes me happy. Dancing makes me happy.
Me: No, we need to work. We have bills to pay and need to eat.
BPD: Chocolate! Lets buy lots of chocolate and pencils and music, more music, where’s the credit card?
Me: No, we need to eat properly. We don’t need to buy things. We have enough things. We should take care of ourselves. It helps us feel better. We deserve good food and we deserve to feel better.
Black dog: No we don’t.
BPD: I don’t care, I’m enjoying the music. Hey pets are happy. Let’s play with pets.
Me: C’mon we need to focus and work. Look at the pile of work in the office.
BPD: Aaargh! That’s too much! Tooooo much! I can’t … I can’t cope. That’s too much work. Oh no. I’ve left it too long I can’t do it, I can’t, I can’t …
Anxiety: freak out, freak out, freak out
Black dog: Don’t even bother. That’s waaay to much to do. Like office work, and gardening, and cleaning and fixing us and … You can’t do it, you know that.
Me: We need to do this. We need to focus. Breathe deeply, let’s just do a little bit. Let’s just break it down into tiny, weeny little jobs. We can just do one little job eh?
Black dog: Why can’t we just die?
BPD: Coz we promised, remember? We are honourable.
Black dog: But don’t you wanna die too?
BPD: Yeah … but I promised not to.
Me: We are not going to die. We are going to get better. We just need to concentrate and work hard ok?
Black dog: Have you ever really wanted to live? Ever? Why are you bothering now? You know there’s no point.
BPD: Pressure building, pressure building, going to explode
Anxiety: Can’t do this, can’t do this, going to explode
Black dog: Yeah let’s publicly explode then they can lock us up and we don’t have to care anymore. No-one else cares anyway so what’s the point.
Me: I care. I care about us. I need us to make it. I deserve happiness. I do want us to live.
Black dog: No you don’t.
BPD: Sad, confused, mind racing, music, work, freak out, want, need, scared … OVERWHELMED
Me: Breathe, breathe, count, ground, focus. Walk. Move. Be mindful. Let’s just work on this minute ok? C’mon feel your breath, feel your muscles, listen to our body, release the tension. Hi Anxiey, seen you now I’m releasing you. Dog, stop chomping at my leg. I’m releasing you too. Little girl lost BPD just hold my hand it’s gonna be ok. We can do this. I’m hugging you ok.
Me: Need to answer phone. Need to work.
BPD: Nooooo what if it’s too hard? What if it’s more work? What if someone is mean or wants money or wants us to buy something? What if it’s a friend? That will be nice? What if someone wants to visit us? Oooh how exciting! How happy! We should answer the phone.
Black dog: It won’t be a friend. No-one is going to visit you. No-one wants to be around you. You’re crazy.
Anxiety: Nooo I don’t want to talk to people. Go away!! Don’t answer. Hide!! Must isolate! Going to bloooowwww!
Me: Breathe, ground, count. Distract. Think happy. Think positive. Read gratitude notes. Read affirmations. Focus on them. Breathe. Believe.
Black dog: You will fail you know … you always do. You are a failure. You are not able to be fixed. You cannot cope. You cannot win.
Me: I … I .. I can. I will … I need …
BPD: OVERWHELMED! Toooooo hard!
Me: Breathe. Breathe. Work on now. Just now. Just this moment. Work can wait a little while. Hold on to the now. There is only now. There is only breathing and smelling and touching and tasting and seeing. There is only this moment … I am alive. I am here. I am now. Focus, focus, focus …
And as my brain battles within itself the piles of everything grow around me … There is still so much to do. But this is the battleground inside my brain.
It’s a battle that ME has to win …
Because ME and BPD are one; Black dog is the interloper and needs to go and ME and BPD can become “I” and I am worthy of love and I am grateful to have people around who care and I am grateful to have the chance to rebuild my life.
I am worthy.
I am deserving of a life worth living.