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Showing posts from January, 2011

New Year, New Goals by Princess B.

Hello everyone. It's a new year and a new start for you and for me. For me, it's developing personally this year. Like many of you out there this new year will bring about new goals for ourselves. I have vowed to let this year be a year of completion and follow through to many of my goals. One where I complete projects I've started as far back as a year or two ago. It also means staying connected to NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) and the mental health community and being financially savvy. What are some of your goals--the ones you don't mind sharing or that are of pressing concern to you? Be Blessed, Princess B.

My Acceptance with Mental Illness

Acceptance to me is when a person recognizes they have a mental illness and then takes ownership of their recovery by meeting the needs of their mental health concern (i.e., medication, therapy, and/or other forms of treatment). Acceptance for me did not come easy. Now I will share with you how I started receiving treatment, why I initially refused it, and who helped me accept my diagnosis of Paranoid Schizophrenia.

Initially, I was forced into treatment, mandated by a judge to medication compliance. Therefore, whenever I refused to take my medication a group of staff would barge into my room, pin me down to the bed while the nurse administered a shot. We followed this routine for a few days till I gave in and took the pills they gave me.

In the beginning, I did not take the medication for several reasons: 1) I did not believe I needed them, nobody told me I had schizophrenia they just started giving me medicine one day, 2) I had a history of enduring allergies and other less severe ill…

Tonight's Support Group Meeting

I just got back from a NAMI support group. It was a very good meeting we covered a lot information related to coping with mental health, our attitude toward stigma, and various bizarre experiences. Afterward, I felt energized, uplifted, and empowered like the way church makes me feel, it was very good. I really enjoyed the company of my friends who are also in recovery from different mental illnesses. I look forward to next week's meeting!

To learn more about schizophrenia visit Embracing My Mind, Inc., NAMI, Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia (Canada).

The Hospital Stay (Continued)

While I was at a California State Hospital I stayed in a coed unit of about 50 people. There were about three to four people to a room. The women were roomed on one side of hall while the men on the other. The hospital divided groups of people based on long-term stay and shorter term stays- I was among the short-term units.

I remember the intake process, which was lengthy. I endured several comprehension, medical, and personal tests. The staff wanted to know everything- my childhood experiences, schooling, knowledge of my mental illness, the reason I was there - EVERYTHING!

In the hospital, we were provided three meals a day with flexible diets if stated - vegetarian, no pork, low sodium, etc. We earned points by good behavior- going to classes, cleaning our room, dressing in an appropriate manner, and doing whatever we were supposed to. The points went toward a store where we could purchase candy, accessories, and other items.

Whenever someone got into trouble they would lose their free…

The Hospital Stay

In my experience, I stayed in the hospital for 2-3 months to get an official mental health diagnosis, and also to regain competency for trial. I was in jail and in a state hospital for taking a military truck from the airport. Taking the truck was related to my nervous breakdown or psychotic break.

My hospital stay was productive. I reunited with my mother and family, and participated in group therapy. I was sent to a California State Hospital because my (unknown) mental illness had gotten so severe that I became catatonic- not moving my body limbs for periods at a time. I was extremely paranoid that staff would try to poison me and thus, I stopped eating and drinking. As a result, I was sent to the emergency room several times. Also, I failed a competency test for trial, in short, I was so sick that the court hearings could not proceed and the judge mandated medication compliance and a visit to the state hospital.

My illness had taken over the loving, ambitious, go-getter, Ashley. I be…

"Thought Broadcasting" A Poem by Claudia Krizay

Thought Broadcasting
Silence is a silver shipTraveling at the speed of the darkness,Black holes are the edifices in which IBuild my thoughts-Word by word,Each and every syllable forms upon my lips,And then broadcasted, aloud-Thoughts are killers- thoughts can harm-My thoughts can be heard from afar.Within this room I write my thoughtsWith a pen that is void of ink, or a pencilThat has no lead,Invisible they are, but somehow,These thoughts are broadcasted aloud.Thoughts are killers thoughts control-My thoughts can be heard from afar.A silver ship with its sail to the wind,A wild horse that canters across vast terrain, orPebbles that roll off of my fingertips,That splash into the creek, one by one,You can see, you can hear, asMy thoughts, broadcasted aloud.My thoughts can be heard from afar.My thoughts are a flame that only I can quench.I am in control of what comes into my mind,As my hands build the world fromThe bricks of Time,My thoughts control the world.My thinking destroys those, w…

Welcoming the New Year with Pride in my Recovery

In group on Thursday, we wrote down three things we are proud of for the year 2010, and also wrote the things we would like to be proud of for 2011. My accomplishments for 2010 included: Going back to college,
Getting my own apartment, and
Maintaining a personal relationship.
I am proud of these things accomplishments because I've showed myself that I can lead an independent life in recovery from schizophrenia. Recovery to me is doing the things I used to do and also doing the things I need to do to move forward. Moreover, I accomplished these things despite my illness and even though certain people were skeptical about my goals, I did it and I am very proud of myself!I have many goals I would like fulfill this year. I would like to become a Certified Peer Specialist (CPS) among other things. A CPS is a trained mental health associate who is also in mental health recovery, and who helps peers on their path to recovery. They facilitate groups, provide resources, and act as…