Imagine not eating for a week or more. Or even drinking water and being hospitalized several times just to keep you alive. At first, you are hungry, however, as time passes you no longer have an interest in food or drink. You do not even have hunger pains! Eventually you do not have to relieve yourself.
You are confined to your bed, not because you are tied down, but because your mind is not functioning properly. You are frozen in time, you do not move a muscle (literally). Your mind is wasted- all the education, memories, and daily functions are not registering; sometimes you hear those around you sometimes you don't- you are catatonic.
Imagine going to court and having to be strapped down because you refused to wear shoes. Or even, not noticing your own mother, grandfather, and aunt in the courtroom with you. Or, even noticing you were in court sitting before a room full of people that are deciding your future. I was zoned out, not aware of what was happening around me.
To rationalize things I thought I was being poisoned by people supervising me. Before I was catatonic I would intentionally throw my plate on the floor so that I would be given another plate so that I can eat. Later, I was put in the psychiatric ward at the jail. They labeled our plates because of our unique diets. Then I thought I was not eating because I was fasting to worship God. It was confusing and I was losing a lot of weight- I lost about 30 pounds off of my slim frame.
After I was mandated by the judge to comply with a medication regimen I slowly regained consciousness and my sense of reality. I drank protein drinks in addition to the three meals that I was given. I got my mind back!
...you probably can't begin to imagine that! But, I can because it happened to me!
It is interesting how some people can quit street drugs, alcohol, or tobacco cold turkey, but I guess it is mind over matter.
To learn more about schizophrenia visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Schizophrenia Society of Novia Scotia (Canada), or Embracing My Mind (EMM).