I have had a week off of therapy and time to think hard about some of the issues that came up over the last month. I have had quite a tantrum, some completely fair, some not, directed at my therapist. So much of my anger has been related to not understanding how he saw me when it wasn't how I saw myself, how I knew others saw me. That changed when I realized that it wasn't him being mean, it was me thinking of myself with the traits I had before, traits I assumed I'd regain and which I didn't. Some of it I guess I knew; I know I think differently now, that my memory is different and that I think more slowly sometimes. I know that I react to stress differently than 18 months ago. I even know specific things that have changed. I'll never admit this to anyone because it makes me mad, but I read so much more slowly now and even then I don't always remember what I read. In grad school we had a class where each week we'd be assigned a theory and have to read every article about it and discuss it. Everyone else had all these note cards about each article; I would have a list of articles I read and maybe a couple words beside it if the author had published a lot about it and I needed to differentiate articles. My memory just worked that way. Now it's hard to get through a book without backtracking. It is hard to adjust to "un-knowing" yourself, and I've been fighting it by pretending nothing changed.
Refusal to even admit that something is a characteristic of yourself isn't really helpful in the intense kind of therapy I've been doing this last year. I have been basically refusing to admit that I was anything like I am right now. I have managed to be more honest with myself about parts of this, like the frequency of my manias and that I do not recognize mania a lot of the time. But I have a long way to go to figure out who I am again.
I have to figure out how to be this person I have become and yet be nice. I think I could like myself again if I could figure out nice. It's so hard though to figure out what I lost and don't see and the therapist is useless there because he didn't know me before.
This will be interesting.