MY STORY

 

Read an Excerpt from Recovery-Oriented Treatment of Early Psychosis: A Team Based Approach

"I can recall what was initially trouble with concentration and performing school work. I would sit at my computer desk to write my senior year thesis but I would either space out or find it impossible to focus. I also had increasing difficulty sleeping and would stay up to the early hours in the morning, talking or rhyming to myself as if in a spoken word contest. I began my studies at New College of Florida as a literature major, with the reasoning that I could write well so I should develop this skill, but by my senior year I was taking mostly religious coursework and becoming increasingly preoccupied with reading religious texts."

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With my Father in New York City shortly after my diagnosis

"At the time, I felt something was off so I went to see the school psychologist. We had several visits and talked about the pressure of writing a senior year thesis, however we failed to intervene or identify the growing severity of the situation. I continued to develop a profound sense that I was having a religious experience. I started hearing whispers assuring me I was prophet and an angel being initiated into a greater realm of spiritual existence. The voices grew louder and began saying, “You are so good... You are so beautiful…” What started as whispers grew into a noisy cacophony of conversations and chaos. I started to believe that the religious text I was reading was speaking directly to me and telling me that I would live to a hundred years or that I would be rewarded with great financial prosperity. There where nights when I would lay down to smoke a cigarette and watch with wonder and awe as the smoke from my cigarettes and clouds in the night sky would coalesce to form crucifixes, doves and other religious imagery. I was experiencing what felt like the heavens directly opening-up and it was driving me toward incessant tears, laughter and madness."

Watch the short film: Beyond Diagnosis 

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- Hellen Keller -

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