This post was inspired by a youth in my peer support group who wrote a letter to her future self to read during the tough times. I’m going to put this letter in my Distress Tolerance Box.
I have a feeling that right now your body is vibrating like a bomb about to go off. You’re possibly crying, if not sobbing, thinking every horrible thought possible in a few short seconds. You’re probably feeling EVERYTHING, because that’s what you do, you feel too much and it quickly becomes too much. You probably yelled and said something you regret because you are still learning how to express what you need. Everything you might have done, don’t worry about it. You are perfect given what you have gone through. I’m sorry this moment is hard for you. Give yourself a hug. You are safe right now. The bad people are gone, only the good people are left and you are still here. That’s pretty awesome.
Give yourself credit for making it to your Distress Tolerance Box. It’s very Wise of you to notice that you needed something from the box to support you in calming down. Awareness is half the battle and you know you have a ton of awareness. A therapist hasn’t told you anything new about yourself in about 5 years. It’s because you know yourself. You know that the moments will hurt so fucking bad which can be so overwhelming AND you also know, most importantly, that the moments will stop hurting and that you will return to your baseline and move on. You know that you will learn something new from each experience and apply it to your life. You know that you emerge from each breakdown, stronger and with more motivation to become a better person and have a life worth living. You know all of this. These are the facts.
You may feel like self-harming. You know that is no longer an option for you and that is fantastic! That behaviour serves no purpose now and you know so much that you can’t go back. Keep going down the path that leads you to reclaiming your body. Just like this moment, the urge will pass. Just keep surfing that urge. Seriously, imagine that you are surfing in a beautiful, hot place. Hang out there for a bit!
I bet that at this point you’re feeling better, your mind has cleared and the emotions have gone down. If it has, that’s great! If not, that’s completely fine! Go through the other tools in your box (you know you love your silver, glittery silly putty) or go get a hug, or maybe text a friend and share with them something you like about them (giving to others can help you). You have learned so many skills. Use them (go look at your binder if you need to).
You are amazing, you do good things and you will make it through this moment.