Living with schizophrenia, it’s pretty much a guarantee that you’ll come up against barriers, some of which may seem insurmountable. You’ll face tough days, weeks, months or even years, and all that pushing for some semblance of recovery or normalcy can easily overwhelm you. Stress is the light switch for symptoms of schizophrenia. As the stress starts to build, your paranoia can increase, you may start becoming obsessive and delusional and you can easily lose yourself in the midst of all these symptoms and find yourself in scary situations. When curve-balls come your way, you have to know how and when to pull back. In essence, you have to be conscious of what you’re feeling, you have to recognize your mind’s reactions to stimuli and be aware that the things you are experiencing are mostly in your head. Having a “wellness toolkit” filled with strategies that work for you will help you figure out your limits and gain an essential awareness of the maximum you can take without falling into delusion. (more…)
The red numbers on the clock bleed into the darkness. Soon the room lurches into focus as my eyes shake off sleepiness. 5:32 AM.
My arms feel heavy as I begin to shift. My mind is buzzing from the night before—I’m still drunk. As my senses wake up, I smell something musty, sour. I start to turn over in bed and then I realize. Oh my god. It’s in my hair! It’s everywhere. It’s vomit, caked in my hair, down the length of the bed, trailing from the bathroom.
I get up quickly (too quickly, if you ask my hangover) and stumble into the bathroom. My eyes are wide, staring back at me from the mirror. A single contact has dried and stuck to my cheek. I’m still in my party clothes. (more…)
Christa Godillot is a Registered Nurse at Montgomery County Emergency Service, Inc. (MCES), a private, non-profit crisis psychiatric hospital located in Norristown, Pennsylvania. Recently, she sat down with her friend and former colleague, OC87 Recovery Diaries editor Gabriel Nathan to talk about her career and her life. In Part two of her interview, Christa talks about her past and her experiences with trauma and how those experiences shaped who she is today. Please click here to read Part one of her interview. (more…)
Mike Hedrick with his father
“We knew something was just not right.”
In talking with my parents about my psychotic break, the one thing that stands out from their experience is the fear and their worry about their son. When I was twenty years old, I went on a trip to the U.N. because I thought I was a prophet of God. I left without telling anybody and I didn’t call my parents until a week later when I had finally had enough and I decided to come home. The phone call was very cryptic. All I said was that I’d be home the next day and that they should pick me up at the train station. During that car ride, I started to ramble about aliens and my mission and the hugeness of it all. I was in awe that my parents couldn’t see it. (more…)
Here at OC87 Recovery Diaries, we focus primarily on stories about mental health recovery from the perspective of the individuals engaged in recovery. Sometimes, we shine the spotlight on the individuals who help folks along on that road of recovery—often, those are mental health professionals, like Christa Godillot. Christa is a Registered Nurse at Montgomery County Emergency Service, Inc. (MCES), a private, non-profit crisis psychiatric hospital, located in Norristown, Pennsylvania. For several years, Christa worked on the inpatient unit with OC87 Recovery Diaries editor Gabriel Nathan. Gabe recently spent some time with Christa, interviewing her about her career as a psychiatric nurse, and as well about how her past helped shape who she is today. We hope that you enjoy Part I of this two-part interview, the next installment of which will run on January 25th. (more…)