We’re finally wrapping up 2015, and a lot of people seem to like doing some kind of end of year wrap-up. That’s not usually me, but since I’m at the edge of someplace good, and it’s the edge of the year, just this once I’m going to make an exception.

Ladies and gentlemen, the State of the Rachael - is strong. No, really. I think me and my doctor are done adjusting meds for awhile, and while life isn’t perfect, it’s so much better than it was a year or even six months ago, that there really isn’t any comparison. It’s shocking how much easier it is to have other people in my life, to interact with them in a positive way, to provide encouragement and receive it without cynicism, and to just have people exist near me, without it being a source of dread. Existing doesn’t hurt so badly, anymore.

Thank you to everyone who has been patient while I conserved emotional energy and focused on fighting myself. I haven’t thought about if there was a way to just… stop existing, without causing harm to the people around me, in months. Thank you for cheering me on, saying kind things, or just being there. All those silly grins, or quick notes, or snail-fist-bumps, they add up. All the sharing of pet pictures, the dog-snuggles, the book recommendations. All the warnings about tv shows that I might not be able to handle, and being told when I was missed, and the willingness to let me teach you something neat. I think people don’t always know exactly how important all those things are to those around them. Thank you.

I am not entirely “fixed”, and likely never will be. That’s okay, though. That’s not what this is all about. It’s about snatching good days as they come, and taking advantage of them. It’s about supporting others, and being supported in return, during the bad ones. One of my favorite books this year, by Jenny Lawson, talks about how struggling with mental illness is a bonus, that without experiencing all the lows, the highs wouldn’t have been so amazing. I’m not sure I can appreciate struggling with depression that much, but I can see how she got to that conclusion.

At the end of last two years, my mantra was “the new year can’t possibly be as bad as this last one was”. This year, I think it might be more like “…and next year will be even better.” It’s not perfection, but it’s a good place to be.