I have come to the recent realization that I treat my emotions with suspicion. The nature of my illness means that emotions arise for no discernable reason other than my brain not acting in the manner that a healthy brain acts.
Part of my coping mechanism has been to develop a sense of emotional awareness. Through introspection and self-honesty, I tend to dig down and analyze not only the emotion I am feeling, but the why of it. It is only when I can understand why I feel a certain way that I can feel the emotion is genuine and not part of my pathology.
Mental illness is a hell of a thing. I have lived with a diagnosis for 28 years now, but honestly the illness has been a lifelong presence for the 43 years of my life. I have gotten pretty good at navigating it for the most part, but I also know it is probably inevitable that my coping mechanisms, support, and medication will not be enough and things go tits up again. I have built these survival strategies over my life, and it is sobering to realize that there will be a day when they are insufficient and I will need to learn new ones.
But for now, I am doing the best I can with what I got, and strive to keep moving forward.