Your post gave me great joy.
I went to confession on Friday. First time in 10 years.
I am Bipolar, 30 years, 3 suicide attempts.
I was told in my confession that what I needed to do was to simply focus on gratitude - he didn’t have me really do anything other than say an act of contrition (he said my words or the usual one) and just thank God for the blessings in my life.
What a Joy it was! When I stopped the prayer I wanted to go on and on. I have felt such joy since then!
He told me that God understands me more than I do, and that he was really in and through it all, even during my time away from the Church (10 years).
I really understood that confession can be a joy-filled experience. For the first time, I didn’t feel guilt - just the peace of Jesus Christ.