Borderline New Year’s Resolutions

Well it’s 2009. Man, after 20 the years seem to fly by. 🙂

I’m going to be 30 this year, which sort of feels like a milestone birthday for many reasons. I’m not sure whether I’ll be depressed about it or indifferent. Most birthday’s since Junior High School have been downers because I didn’t really have parties. There were, however, a few years here and there where some very good people in my life decided to buy a cake and spend some time with me. I am EXTREMELY grateful for this, and I make it a point to thank whomever took time out of their day to arrange cake and ice cream for me. Sometimes, it’s the little things that count.

Anway, here are a few New Year’s resolutions. Basically, the idea is that I’m going resolve to do several things, but give myself a break (hopefully) if I don’t get to all of them.

1.) Write in more often and start linking together with other articles. Some of the entries I’ve read in other BPD blogs are amazing: very emotional, yet telling about this painful, shitty condition that is BPD.

2.) Lose weight. I put on 12 pounds last year, in part because my diabetic control was good. At first you might say, wait: “if you’re diabetic, and you have good control, why would you gain weight?”. I asked the same question to my Endocrineologist, a he stated: [paraphrased] “Strictly speaking, with Type 1 insulin dependent Diabetes – which is what you have – weight gain is a good sign, because it indicates that your blood glucose levels are normal. If they were constantly high, you would be passing all your bodily sugar/energy out during constant urination, which would lead to Ketoacidosis and extreme weight loss; both of which are very bad for your body.”

3.) Try to find an English speaking DBT group, and if not, at least research it as much as possible in Costa Rica. During the holidays, I went to see my psychiatrist for my yearly checkup, and she stated that DBT, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, is a very popular and successful treatment program for BPD. Pioneered by the famous researcher Marsha Linehan, DBT seeks to retrain the BPD sufferer’s brain. This is an intensive process, loosely akin to joining a 12 step program, but is more like a very methodical, constant re-working of thought patterns. In the end, the idea is that the brian will be re-trained and hopefully free from some of the ways BPD causes it to make us act out, get angry, become self abusive, or depressed.

4.) Be more weary of my own non BPD related weaknesses. Last year I lost a lot of money to companies that either did not pay me, stole it, or simply kept the money and refused to provide the services they promised. This was very upsetting and embarassing for me, because I would like to think that I can discern between “the good guys” and “bad guys”. Unfortunately, I’ve learned my lesson the hard way. In some cases, my loss of money was due to my feelings of greed: I wanted to gain an edge in my business and made risky investments, only to see them disappear. In other cases it was being miserly: attempting to save a buck at every corner, even if it meant pre-paying service providers as way to get lower prices. I ended up losing thousands, which tells me my tendancy to “gamble” is still very much alive in me, even if I’m not playing cards at the casino.

5.) Figure out ways to meet others/get out of the apartment more. BPD is a big handicap and the fact that I’m shy and anxious around others doesn’t make it any easier to meet new people. Some people are very socially resilient: that is, as friends and lovers come and go in their lives, they are able to adapt and meet others. For me, this process of adjustment takes a lot longer, and I desperately want to think of ways of meeting people without coming across as “strange” or “desperate”. In my own words, “I want to meet new people, particularly women, the confident way”.

Well there’s five things to work on in 2009. I hope everyone else has set a few goals, big and small, for themselves. Even if we never end up actually achieving our New Year’s resolutions, I still firmly believe the actual process of thinking about things we need to work on is very therapeutic and helpful. At the very least, our sub-conscious becomes aware of things we need to do, even if our minds may be clouded by depression, BPD, or any other mental illness.