Hi, there. Thanks for visiting. I'm starting this blog as an advocate for mental and physical health. I'm a freelance writer and also own a home based medical transcription business. I was diagnosed in 1978 with paranoid schizophrenia and started to become acutely ill three years prior to that, unmedicated, frightened, confused, and in trouble with the law. I graduated from university with distinction the year I became ill. I've never regretted learning how to think at university. I struggled with my illness for 35 years and have reached the top of the mountain now, I think, or the other side, where the grass is greener and the path easier. There's hope for all of us, the whole human race, and never think there isn't hope or joy no matter your circumstances. I'd love to hear your thoughts and experiences with mental illness in all its forms: depression, brain injury, autism, schizophrenia, bipolar, anxiety disorders, etc. and your positive experiences as well as those lies and half truths society and even therapists would have us believe about ourselves.

We are different folks, and we are beautiful. The whole human race is beautiful. Let's celebrate life.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Superman and Batman

Who are my heroes and heroines? I just read a very brief passage on a new book by Deepak Choprah and he's talking about heroes in uniform such as Superman and Batman (mythical heroes of course) and such as Buddha, Jesus, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and those who are similar in outlook, I presume fighting the powers of darkness. I have a different outlook on the powers of darkness, thinking they're necessary for the existence of light and God, and the Devil is but another face of the same coin of God and was formed by God in the beginning, although I think evil probably existed as a counterpoint to good forever. Quantum physics says that the universe may be forever expanding and contracting from an original Big Bang, in which case there would be no original Big Bang, just an eternal contraction and expansion. They say there may be no such thing as time, it might be tied to mass and matter. I think Einstein said that, too, in his way. Too bad Einstein isn't alive today, he'd have a wonderful time of it, pun intended.

Deepak Choprah suggests we think about who our heroes and heroines are and map out a plan of interacting with the world that falls into place, I presume, with the superheroes of our imaginations. I might think on that and think who my heroes are. Odd,  because I own a Batman and a Superman tee-shirt and like the movies and the concept. When I was growing up I liked Steve Reeves in the Hercules movies, always liked heroes who would overthrow the challenges put in their way and make good out of bad. Like God does, he makes good out of bad, and our heroes may exemplify in some way our concept of God. Although we can never fully grasp the concept of God, it's beyond us, I think, unless of course we've invented it to suit ourselves.

I've just been through a very bad depression that lasted only for a couple of weeks but seemed interminable. A hint--a friend suggested it may be the result of lack of light lately as we haven't had many sunny days at all during the winter, spring, and now summer is rainy and grey. I suffer from SAD in the winter and had a SAD light, 5000 lux, seems enough. I took it out today and sat by it for a couple of hours. Seemed to really make a difference. Looking for psychological reasons for depression or paranoia sometimes isn't enough. It could be something as simple as lack of light or a chemical imbalance.

I'll try to be a superhero in my life but am imperfect and hope I'm loved even though I'm not perfect. I saw a magazine heading today that said "I don't have to be perfect to be loved" and that's something we who were raised with conditional love have to learn.

Musings of a former paranoid

I've noticed a bit of serendipity. When I post a rainbow photo someone else posts a rainbow photo. When I wear red sneakers someone else wears red sneakers. When I post a fireworks photo someone else posts a fireworks photo. When I call myself a pirate someone else calls themselves a pirate. These things really happen. Am I leader? When I wear feather earrings will I see others? That's my next plan. Yours truly, the Paranoid Psychopath
And what's with the media saying Norway's attacks aren't "terrorist?" Are all "terrorists" of a different race? Can't Caucasians be terrorists?
I'm planning to write an article on the wonderful job the Edmonton Police Service is doing with its training of officers dealing with the mentally ill. The media knows but there isn't much in the media about it. I think the EPS deserves a big pat on the back. I'm going to try and see that they get some recognition.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Split Personality

I've wondered over the years if I actually suffered from dissociative illness or multiple personality disorder rather than schizophrenia at first? I had a distinct personality I called the Buccaneer whom I've discussed before, and he certainly kept me alive on many occasions but he was aggressive although I was never violent or dangerous. A kind male friend described me as "malleable" recently, which means amenable to change I believe, and a good friend also agreed. If I ever did suffer from a dissociative disorder, which seems rather likely, then I don't anymore and it's incredible that should have been overcome. I did put emotions and experiences in what I always described as "boxes" and that's disturbingly like what a dissociative disorder does as I understand it. Perhaps I'll discuss that with my psych when I see her on Monday but I don't discuss anything at length and want to see her less often, so will simply make this appointment as meaningful as I can so I don't have to follow-up a lot. I come from a psychologically and emotionally abusive background; as well as physically abusive on many occasions. It could be that I put my emotions and feelings into little boxes as a means to protect myself. It's interesting that my friend Bob from Michigan confused SZ with dissociative disorder. I thought about that and wondered if perhaps that was part of my illness. I asked a psych 25 or 30 years ago if he thought that was the case. He didn't answer me, as so often they didn't back then, and I don't know if it's because they didn't know or because they didn't know what to do about it if it were true.

Saturday, July 02, 2011


Happy Canada Day to all Canucks on July 1st. And Happy Fourth of July to all you Yanks and Southern Belles and Gentlemen.

My family didn't celebrate Dominion Day when I was growing up, as it was called then, and I remember only mention of it in school when we saluted the flag. Do others have better memories, perhaps of barbecues and picnics, fireworks, ice cream, Watkins orange drink, hotdogs or something distinctive to your community or family? My parents didn't participate much in the life of the small community in which we lived so there may have been picnics I don't remember or picnics we didn't go to. I do remember a picnic when school ended, with orange juice, hot dogs, and ice cream, and fudge in a little bag. All homemade, of course, and the men took turns turning the crank of the ice cream makers. We may have had to pay a nickel or so for some of it and so didn't get a lot of the drink, I remember, or more than one hotdog. That could have been a First of July picnic but I don't remember any fireworks. My parents would have left before the end, though...

Do you have memories of holidays spent with family and friends growing up?

I hope my children have good memories of holidays. I don't know. I was a single mom for most of them.

My mother used to bake a cake for every birthday, though, a round double layer chocolate cake with jam in the middle and a thin layer of icing on the top. There'd be candles. I grew up thinking every birthday had to have a cake. My second husband didn't even get a cake for my 40th birthday. I made such a fuss that he bought a cake for the next birthday, left it in the box and banged it on the table!

Once I was sick for my birthday but my mother still made a cake that day and I couldn't eat it although everyone else did. I think some of my siblings felt bad about that, particularly one of my brothers who was always very soft hearted. I remember once my mother wrapped a small penknife for his birthday in little  boxes that were put in bigger boxes and then wrapped an enormous box. He was so excited until the boxes kept getting smaller and he got a penknife. That was all. No bicycle in the garage or anything.

So maybe that explains why I thought presents and cakes were important for birthdays.

Let's face it, I'm a character. And I just thought tonight that all my close friends are characters, which explains a lot. I guess I just don't find people interesting or compatible unless they are. But I should shut my mouth then about frustrations with them because I myself am outspoken and eccentric. And my friends make my heart sing. Next time I'm frustrated with anyone's behavior I'll simply tell them "you're quite a character. Like me." And that should explain a lot.