During my nervous breakdown, I was extremely confused and paranoid. I did not recognize which trolley/train to get on although I rode public transportation many times before. I sought a newspaper because I did not even know the date! I was a mess. Moreover, I thought everyone was interested in me and out to harm me. I began trying to disguise myself by removing my glasses and anything that identifies me such as my Bible, which I carried with me everywhere.
As you may have read in an earlier blog entry, I thought I saw demons. They were everywhere! In all the people around me. I was outnumbered and could not escape. And then I saw a sitting truck with the door wide open and the keys in them. Aha! I thought, this is a blessing from God and my way to escape everyone. I got into the truck and started driving. i thought to myself if I could get to a store to buy some scissors to cut off my hair I would escape everyone.
The radio was on and Sean Kingston's song, "Girls, Girls, Girls," I think the song is called was playing. The lyrics went something like this... "The girl makes me suicidal, suicidal, can't get over her". I took the song literally and thought it was a message from the devil trying to get me to commit suicide, but that wasn't happening!
Soon police were in my rear view mirror and I got scared. I had never been pulled over by the police. My anxiety shot through the roof (on top of the high level it was already at due to conflicting voices), and I wasn't stopping. I drove through the city with the police on my tail, went the opposite flow of traffic, and eventually stopped by a head on collision into a building. Thank God I was wearing my seat belt.
I was outnumbered by the police and I surrendered, because the truck wouldn't start up again. As I sat in the back seat of the police car all I could do was pray. Besides, I thought I was Jesus Christ being persecuted all over again. In fact, I thought the police car I sat in was about to blow up, I thought the police were in on it, trying to stop me from my mission, which I don't know what it was, but I know must have had one being a prophet.
I spent five months in jail and in the state hospital. At first, I was so out of it I did not know what was really going on- my freedom was suspended because I had committed a crime. And later, I was told I hit two cars, but the people were not seriously hurt- Thank God!
Now, on medication I am aware of my surroundings and do not want to put myself in jeopardy again. In jail, I learned of my diagnosis, paranoid schizophrenia, and was put on medication. That was a blessing in disguise because it could have gotten worse.
The medication helps me. I can think clearly without the hassles- hallucinations, delusions, paranoia, and anxiety. I don't worry my family anymore, or myself for that matter!
So is treatment optional? Hell no! I want to live life to the fullest and if medication is my magic, then so be it...
If you are struggling to get someone to take their medication try reminding them of their episode and really troubling moments such as depression, suicidal thoughts, not eating, going to the hospital, etc. I know when someone tried to convince me to take my medication they reminded me of how many times I went to the emergency room and said that was not normal, and that I am sick and need medication. That was my nurse, while I was incarcerated. His comments got me to take my medication.
To learn more about schizophrenia visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) or Schizophrenia Society of Novia Scotia (Canada).