I am hyped. I have been trying to get to a mental health support group now for a couple of months. I finally found some and put them on my calendar. I went to my first one in the downtown area and realized that I read it wrong and I missed it.
Since then something has come up for every meeting time. It doesn't help that the closest one is about 25-30 minutes away and you have to pay for parking (sometimes I just don't have enough to do that). The times and locations just aren't good for me, but I kept trying.
Then today I realized I had erased one of the groups off my calendar by accident and I looked online to find the information again. It wasn't easy to find. After trying different searches for at least 15 minutes, I then remembered that I had it bookmarked.
When I got on the site, I had to look several times before believing what I was seeing. A support group on a night I could attend... only a few miles from my house? What?!
But because I'm a pessimist and didn't want to be burned, I emailed the facilitator to make sure that the information was accurate. I got back a reply from someone who said it was the wrong email address.
But what's strange is that the "wrong number" again replied a few minutes later. He told me that he goes to therapy twice a week and that he was proud of me for trying to find a support group. He encouraged me to show up at the site even if I couldn't get in touch with anyone. This... from a total stranger. That encouragement was what I needed to try the phone number I had.
So I texted the facilitator (social anxiety means a phone call is a last-ditch option). He called me back a few minutes later and I actually answered (normally I wouldn't due to the social anxiety, but because of the encouragement by a stranger, I did).
I am the first one who has contacted him about coming. Apparently, he's been there for a few months with no one else coming but the website was slow to upload the new location once he started it and also entered his email address incorrectly.
The faithfulness of this man is allowing me something that I have wanted ever since I found out I have bipolar disorder - a community of people who understand. I go to an addiction support group and I love the people there, but it's still not the same. It's close, but not the same.
I'm hoping to find more people who can attend. If you live in this area and have a diagnosed mental illness, please join us. This one meets at First Baptist Trussville at 6:00 on Thursdays. You can find more information at http://www.namialabama.org/affiliates
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