100% Success Rate For Over 35 Years

That’s right, I have kept myself alive 100% of the time for over 35 years now.  Maybe that’s a funny way of looking at things, but when you live a life that very often involves suicidal ideation or, on the flip side, very dangerous and risky behavior, you have to figure that 100% is a pretty good number at the end of a 35 year stretch.

For all of the moments of “give up” I have had in the past, the fleeting “give ups” that I have at present, and the “give ups” that I know are going to be thoughts in my future as a person who deals with mental illness, I can say that, at this very moment in time, I have no “give ups” in me, at this current time.

Of course, that could change within the next hour or week or month or whatever period of time you can conceive of.  And, it probably will.  But when things are semi-ok, when I have a day, even just a single day where I feel like I have passed through like a semi-successful human being, I need to write it down, to commemorate it, to throw it a freaking ticker-tape parade.  Sometimes I can go really long stretches without a day like today, and every great once in awhile, I will have a string of “give up” free days.  I don’t have a string of them at the moment, but I have today.

Today was a pretty good day.  I had only very fleeting thoughts of going up, and for the most part my mind just kept pushing me to go on farther, harder, faster, better, more efficient, more brave.  I went into a craft store today, and I did not totally freak out while inside, and spent the better part of 30 minutes in there.  That is no small feat, because as a general rule for the past months, I go absolutely nowhere, not even usually to appointments.

But I had a gift card, and the wise mind part of me knows that, if I have materials that inspire me, I will be more likely to do crafting-type-stuff, which, generally, makes me feel a little better.  I pushed myself to go to the craft store, and I had my lucky, ever-consistent LarBear with me, and I did ok.  I didn’t do amazing or great, but I did ok, and I ended up with some new beads that I am pretty excited about.

Even bigger than that adventure, was the fact that I went into a Kwik Shop gas station and picked out my own bottle of water and used the restroom and stayed inside the whole time, even waiting in line with LarBear to pay, and didn’t flee to the safety of the car.  This is an even bigger deal because I have never ever been inside this gas station or into any place of business in this section of town.  I pushed myself because I knew I had to.  I pushed myself because I want to get better and be able to go more places.  And maybe, just maybe, I pushed so hard because I really, really needed to pee.  Whatever the motivation, I’ll take it.

I know I do better when I use skills like build mastery and build structure, which is basically exactly what it sounds like.  Building mastery can range from doing everyday things like cooking a meal to learning a new skill.  It is basically (in my eyes), anything that you can do that you can look at and say, “that is me being productive.”  Building structure is also just like it sounds, keeping a day full and not having too much down time.

Building structure and building mastery are the two skills that are going to give me real success, in the long run, if I can keep them up.  I am looking at what I have done today and I am pleased.  I have made a plan for what I am doing tomorrow, and I have detailed it out on paper.  If I can stick with it, I will have possibly another day of success.

A more stable length of time is started with stringing one day together after another, and so I have my evening yesterday when I made a new recipe and cleaned up the house a bit, and I have today, with the shopping and getting out in public and cooking a healthy dinner.  Hopefully I am able to follow through on tomorrow’s plans, or at least some variation.

Right now, at this moment, I have no “give up” in me, and there is really nothing else I can ask for, more than that.

12 thoughts on “100% Success Rate For Over 35 Years

    • Ha! Yes, sometimes the ONLY thing motivating any action on my part is the urgent need to pee. Oh well, take what we can get, right? 🙂 And that song is one of my absolute favorites, too…I often play it on repeat.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Many of us … me, Garry and apparently you … have many reasons to be delighted and amazed that we ARE still alive. So many people I used to know are not. Survival is underrated as a lifestyle. Ups, down, near-death experiences. It’s all part of the package. You don’t get to pick and choose which piece you keep and which you discard.

    Stability comes to many of us very late in the game. Age does what drugs and therapy can’t. Garry was a really (really!) wild and crazy guy and I did things I would NEVER admit to under interrogation. I have trouble sometimes believing what I did and enjoyed doing. Sometimes, when Garry is tired and feeling his age, he says “the life I lived had a price,” and I know what he means. We did what we did and we pay the piper. Whatever your reasons, many of us lived hard, fast, and dangerously. I’m glad to be alive. I’m glad YOU’RE alive. Because the alternative is very unattractive. Let’s NOT go there. Not yet.


    • Nope, not yet. And I agree with Garry, the life I have lived thus far had a price, yep, sure has. All I can do is try and be less self-destructive in the future, as no one I know can actually change the past.


      • This is one of those things that is difficult to explain to people who have had less crazy lives. They don’t know what we’re talking about. I’m not inclined to explain most of it because explaining it makes it sound even more decadent than it was … and much more weird.

        I don’t regret it. I doubt Garry does either. The things we DO regret generally involve money — how we didn’t make sensible financial decisions, didn’t take advantage of opportunities when we could have … and especially for me, how I wish I had not let my ex husbands take everything just so I could get away. But then again, maybe I was right and a battle would have ended with getting the same nothing I got anyhow. Sometimes, the system is not going to work for you. The only people who end up with something to show for it are lawyers.

        Anyway, I congratulate you on getting this far and I hope you have the chance to complain about the horrors of old age 😀


  2. Celebrating your survival success rate is fucking brilliant. Well done! I’ve stayed alive for 35 years too despite suicidal ideation self harm and several attempts. It is something to be celebrated. Congratulations 🙂


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