As could be expected and as due diligence dictates, before starting this site I looked around for a forum for people in remission from mental illness. I called my local NAMI chapter. I went through what the Internet has to offer. I didn’t find nothing, but I didn’t find a discussion either. I periodically redo my search, looking for resources to post in the Reading Room and to maybe link up with individuals.
Yesterday’s hunt yielded mostly things I had found earlier. Here are some things I (re)read today: Healthy Place Blog (2010), Everyday Health (2010), Anxiety Insights (2006), Overcoming Schizophrenia (2009), PsychCentral (n.d.), Anxiety Self Help Blog (n.d.). Since definition, self-definition, multiple definitions, and clear definitions, are ongoing themes here, I tried to focus on just that. Given my recent reading and that the last post asked about metrics for wellness, I thought this discussion makes sense.
You can follow the links or trust me on the fact that they are a mixture of “the definition of ‘remission’ is different for everyone” and narrow declarative statements with clear-cut definitions. They are also a mix of “Remission happens when you do the personal work to achieve it,” “Remission happens when you’re medicated,” and the positions in between.
Personal Viewpoint: I am currently in remission by my own definition. I am also not all that interested in using other people’s definitions. I have my own ways of measuring and determining that Remissionland is where I currently reside. I also believe that Remissionland is a neighborhood within the Town of the High-Functioning and not exactly the same place. This is because I have a different definition of “functioning” that includes different measurements. The Venn diagram would look like this:
After drawing this diagram, I considered that many people would find this ridiculous — that many people might even reverse the circles to say that you must step into remission before you can work toward higher levels of “functioning,” whatever that may mean. So, here I should just own up to the fact that my criteria for functioning are not as strict as my criteria for wellness. I should probably also own up to enjoying how much work I produce when I’m off my metaphoric rocker. I should own up to probably deriving too much of my sense of accomplishment from whether I’m in the blue circle regardless of whether I’m also in the red circle. Maybe I should own up to not knowing if that’s an OK thing.
Questions: What the hell is Remission? How does it relate to defining “Functioning” for yourself, to feeling good about how you’re getting by? Does it matter or is it just something doctors and medical statisticians like to talk about?