The Devil I Know

I posted yesterday about how my therapist wanted me to know myself better and planned to help me make a “map of the tree of my mental illness.” First of all, anything that helps me be rid of the demons of mental illness, or at least lessen their grip, is a welcome thing. Yet at the same time, there is a twinge of fear that comes with the idea of knowing myself independent of my mental illness.

After all, my mental illness is the devil I know. What if, absent its darkness, I don’t like the devil I am, the unworthy self I’ve hidden from for so long?

Deep down I know this pangs of doubt are the defenses of depression’s demons, the alarms of my anxiety, as I seek to reclaim some of the power they’ve hoarded for so long. Objectively I know that I am not the unwelcome, unlovable person my brain tries to suggest I am.

Recovering from mental illness is a constant battle, a struggle against demons in your own brain, demons you’ve likely known for quite some time. Yet the devil you know only wins when you let its fear of what comes next control you.


Because the truth is that exorcising these demons lets the light, and your better angels, come out.

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