June 02, 2007

Radio show, plus

Here is an NPR radio documentary that features Lynnie and me in the last half. It is cribbed from a longer interview, or taken from parts cut out of the original and spliced together to make something new. Which is hard to tell. Anyhow the subject is Siblings of the Mentally Ill, but our segment features both of us dealing with my illness, though more through Lynnie's eyes. This may particularly interest families of those with schizophrenia though "we" might want to listen too, to hear about our effect on others. Here is the link.

I'm trying to format the StoryCorps interview, which aired on NPR a few weeks ago, but with KAREN's name (you can imagine how happy that made me) in order to be able to upload it here. So far, no dice. I get a QuickTime file that only opens by going into my own harddrive to find it. If anyone has a Mac and knows how to convert an external CD into a computer music file that is uploadable to the net, specifically the blog, do let me know!

I remain tired, and next week I am not looking forward to as there is a required "activity" every single day, sometimes two activities, but I hope to write a longer entry on Monday. Sorry it is taking me so long; you'd think I hadn't just undergone a two-weeks-long "rest cure"...which, of course, no hospital stay permits these days.

Regular municipal hospitals in Connecticut with psych units are invariably short-term, and that means Crisis Intervention Centers these days: the average stay has been slashed from weeks to 3-8 days most places. Except for the one State Hospital, where more people are discharged from than who live there permanently, I cannot think even of any well-known long-term psychiatric hospital in the state that is still open and still long-term. There's the Intitute of Living in Hartford, whose name is retained but which was bought out by Hartford Hospital and has become something former patients of the private Retreat would not recognize. I was at a formerly Jewish hospital, Mt Sinai, which had been bought out by the local Catholic hospital, St Francis, which retained the name of each on each "campus".

As for resting-- Well, I did have a single, whereas most rooms were doubles, and I very rarely went to any group, but stayed on my bed taking notes from dawn to dark, except for meals, which they wouldn't allow me to eat in my room for fear of bugs. But more of that on Monday.

As soon as I got home, Karen started in on her campaign to get me to do things with her again. Begging me to come down to her apartment to talk, just when I was writing. My answering machine says so, first thing, and that I will not answer the phone after 6pm. Still she leaves a message that sounds urgent and says Pam, PLEASE pick up! So I do, only to find it is something like she really had to know whether I was visiting tonight or not...Didn't she just hear my answering machine??? I write after 6pm and do not answer the phone! Well, why did you answer, dumkof! (sp?) (which means, I think, "Stupid").

Anyhow, I do not want to write more than that right now, and will save the rest for Monday.

Posted by pamwagg at June 2, 2007 04:05 PM


I am very glad you are back home. I imagine that things at home now are not necessarily easier than before you were away. I expect the situations with Joe and Karen are basically the same as before. I hope you can stay consistent with what helps (like not answering the phone in the evening). I look forward to many more things you have to share. Your writing has done something for me which nothing else has which I am extremely grateful for. I don't have time now to explain what I mean, but I will soon.
Please take care,

Posted by: Stuart at June 4, 2007 01:52 PM

Dear Pam,

You absolutely must not let Karen pressure you into doing things you don't want to do and don't answer the phone after six! I'm sure she doesn't mean to be such a pain in the ass but it seems as if you don't put your foot down then she will walk all over you. If you haven't already, do a written meditation on how to say NO to people and practice it.

I hope you have a good week (cut back on your activities as much as you can) and I'll be back online next week-end.

Posted by: Kate K. at June 3, 2007 02:51 PM

Yay! I am SO glad you are back. I have thought of you often. Just finished reading Divided was riveting.

Love, Lizabeth

Posted by: Elizabeth Grace at June 2, 2007 10:16 PM

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