Two weeks ago I was prey to an unexpected event of psychosis, but together we tethered. My phone found my hand found speed-dial found Coach, who in turn found me fragmented and terrified, convinced that I was dead. Coach held the line. I lost the day, the night before, and the day after into the weekend. Coach got me home.
As children, my generation was taught that we can “make the world a better place.” Although I am a firm believer of this statement, a single question arises in my mind – how are we, the younger population, supposed to make a difference when most of our education surrounding mental illness comes from the unreliable and deceptive media?
My folded hands are pointing heavenward and my head is bowed in prayer. A scrumptious meal is spread out before me: cranberry sauce, a basket of rolls, a plateful of mashed potatoes and peas. In the center of the table is a golden, glazed turkey. I am five years old in this photograph. Everything about the dinner is fake. Everything but the prayer. I was praying for real food.
My brain lies to itself. The brain that I rely on for answers can’t always distinguish between the perception and the experience, the here-and-now and the “what ifs”. It cannot be fooled into believing what I tell it, because, as a mind, it has made up its own. A smile cannot turn a frown upside down. A positive attitude is no more a cure than is a sportswear slogan – “just doing it” doesn’t do it. My recovery depends upon communication. At all costs.
Over the decades, I’ve learned that there’s only so much I can do to ward off depression, disguised as ducks lined up in a row, waiting eagerly to march into my brain and screw me up. I should have seen this coming. Had it been summer, I’d have been expecting it, but because of the false sense of security that autumn brings, I let my guard down.