I feel good. Not in a James Brown kinda way, just “good”. I am content with life at the moment, feeling inspired to be creative in a variety of ways and enjoying my own company. This is the first time in many years — so many I have lost count — that I have felt this way. Because I have had the diagnosis of “schizoaffective disorder” offered to me and have experienced five separate episodes of psychosis, as well as long depressive patches too numerous to count, this feels foreign.

Here I am, cruising along thinking “things are pretty good right now, BUT…”, with a capital B-U-T.

Then the questions start:

What if I slip?
Is this happiness?
Am I manic?
Will I maintain this?
Am I tipping into psychosis?

Ultimately, I guess the answers are philosophical in that I cannot know what is around the corner and I am best to allow it to flow and go with it as much as possible, for as long as I can. How do I rid myself of the niggling voice at the in the back of my mind that is so doubtful? When you have been through multiple episodes of being in a different kind of reality, it is healthy to question oneself but not so much that the questions are constant companions.

If I slip, fall, crash or hit rockbottom again one day, I know now that I can recover and that the journey is never linear.

The past 24 months or so have seen my life go through many changes and transitions. From moving house and the end of an era, to starting a job, being in a mental health step-up-step-down facility for a month, to the emergence of a worldwide pandemic, multiple coronavirus lockdowns in Melbourne and a host of other transitions, and that is all just within the first few months around the end of 2019/start of 2020. Since then I left the job due to my mental health about seven or eight months ago, gave up drinking alcohol six months ago and started a healthkick around a month ago, so it is looking good for 2022. At least at this point in time.

Looking back, I can see that giving up alcohol has had a lot of amazing effects on my physical and mental wellbeing. If I was still drinking, I wouldn’t have been able to start the healthkick and if I had not started the healthkick, I would not be feeling so contented right now either.