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February 22, 2004

Introduction to Me

Hello to everyone who might be interested in learning what is was like or rather share feelings and past experiences with me and my family who have lived with a parent that has been diagnosed and currently living with untreated schizophrenia. Honestly I don't know exactly where to start. There are so many experiences to choose from. I think I will start with describing myself and what kind of person I am today.

I am twenty-eight years old, married and we have a little girl who is three. I am in nursing school, my second semester of LPN. I never knew what I wanted to be when I grew up, but almost three years ago my sister inlaw helped me get an interview at our hospital here in town. I was going to be hired for the desk secretary on the med-surge floor, but later I became a CNA which is what I am doing now. When I did my orientation I remember being so pumped about the nursing field. I was so excited. I remembered my therapist at the time telling me that the perfect job was where a person can help others and make decent money at the same time. What I saw was my oportunity to definately help others. I sat on my dicision for over a year before I decided that getting through school would be easier if I would enroll. Silly me. Nothing happens unless I make it happen. I had always heard that little saying but it took almost ten years for it to sink in.

I am a good person I think. I don't hurt other people intentionally. I try to keep myself on the straight and narrow. Sometimes it is a daily battle. Every once in awhile if I feel down about myself I try to do something good for someone. For instance shoveling the neighbors driveway because I know they can't or playing secret santa at christmas time. Doing these things anonamously is the way I like to go. It keeps the uncomfortableness of them finding out at bay. Plus it's not necassary or important if they do know.

I do smoke and social driink occasionally, but so does half the world. I would like to quick smoking someday. I feel I need to get my wieght issues taken care of first.

I have been in and out of therapy a couple of times. The first time was when I was twenty-two. I was on the virge of a physical breakdown. I had no idea what was wrong with me. I couldn't walk ten feet without haveing to sit down. I didn't sleep well and was always tired. I began to loose wieght (deffinately suspicious) and had no appetite. So, I went to see my doctor and she asked me if I wanted to take two little quizes and I agreed, apprehensive about how it would go. When I finished she took them out of the room and came back about ten minutes later, telling me that I had depresion and anxiety. I almost started crying. She informed me that some people are born with depression and some have it because of past issues or experiences. I believe the latter is where I fell in. I explained that my mother had schizophrenia and was recently diagnosed about two years before at the age of 49. I also told her of my fear of having to be on medications for the rest of my life. I didn't want to be crazy, and that was my initial thought.

Being dependant on meds at that time was scarry for me. My fear of having something similar to my mother or as a result of was not what I wanted. But we don't always have a choice as to our mental health. I was close to loosing my job because of attendance and I wanted to feel better so I went on to therapy also.

I was on paxil for about a year and quit. I quit therapy at the same time because I was moving accross the country to follow my boyfriend who is now my husband. I didn't feel therapy was doing much for me, I only went for six sessions. He told me that I needed to follow up with someone in Illinois. I recieved the same surprise from my doctor when I told her that I quit paxil. So she gave me a prescription for a year to take with me. I stayed off of everything untill my daughter was about four months old.

Now having a kid brought up all kinds of issues. I love her more than anything or anyone in the whole world. But she was not the easiest child. Still isn't for that matter. I was going through major post partum depression. My husband is in the reserves and he had left one weekend. I was scared for him to leave. I didn't trust myself being home with the baby alone. I had not slept for five months and this time I just knew I was going to lose it. I felt the urge to just throw her agianst the wall, or leave her somewhere. I didn't care. I took all of what I had left to keep my emotional well being in check, to remind myself that she was helpless and that yes I did love her. I was never so glad to see him than when he returned that sunday night. This took me back to the doctor who suggested therapy and returning to paxil. I was so adament at that time to stay off paxil and so for the next year I did just therapy sessions on a weekly basis.

This went well for me I thought. My therapist told me that I had platoued and I could quit therapy for now. About three months later I called my doctor and said I wanted back on paxil. Now I know paxil is what I need for the rest of my life and I refuse to quit taking it. I was so emotionally drained that I couldn't concentrate on anything.

Now to change the subject. I am the fourth child of six. There is four of us girls and two boys. The boys being the oldest and the youngest. I have informed most of them of me writing the blog and would like them to share their point of views with everyone.

Our parents are now living in Washington near Seatle where they are close to my older brother and his family. I call them one unit. The rest of the kids don't talk to or see them. We have disenfranchised ourselves. I will get more into that later of course.

What brought me to writing a blog began with a research paper I am currently doing on schizophrenia in my comp II class. I wrote a letter to NAMI which is an excellant site if anyone cares to check it out. I wanted to know if there was any documentation anywhere on children who have parents with schizophrenia and how they have dealt with it. There is little to no literature on the subject. I didn't get very far, but I did get a couple of feedbacks from some people from the bullitin I posted. I wish to expand on what I have found and what I have experienced for later educational purposes.

I am driven to do more if I can. If I can help others by helping myself. I love to talk. I am of course my favorite subject. My best friend can agree to that.

I will stop here because this is meant to be an introduction. I tend to get carried away.

Posted by Erin at February 22, 2004 01:29 AM | TrackBack

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