How it all started
I recall my post on who is a simpleton? I detailed my friendship with with massa Gaby, and although I don’t know what or if he was ever diagnosed with any mental illness (hardly the case back home you know – you go lun and you are abandoned by your family and all to roam the streets as you please), I see a lot of schizophrenia symptons there now.
When I became more active in the mental illness world, one of my first friends (now a precious member of my dear e family), was none other than Pammy as she is fondly called. Please, do yourself literary justice and read her about me page to understand once and for the umpteenth time that psychiatry destroys more than it helps and heals so far. Why let people with so much talent deteriorate so far all because you think they belong to some category and gotta get that label which means take those particular meds and sleep off or be locked off?
Pamela Spiro Wagner: Artist (in her potrait above, she sits close to one of her gorgeous works of art) , poet, co-author of Divided Minds: Twin Sisters and their Journey through Schizophrenia (St Martins Press, 2005) and author of We Mad Climb Shaky Ladders (CavanKerry Press, 2009). Her third book, poems, Learning to See in Three Dimensions is now also available for publication.
But today, what I want to tell you about Pammy is that we got to bond further by a series of emails when we were both going through tough times. I can’t compare mine to Pammy’s numerous, I mean she’s braved it so much from childhood to her now +6decades. Pammy was on her way out to Vermont, leaving CT after her ‘conviction’ that only death stared at her there. I was in a depression about my status quo and needed to make a decision or snap outrightly. And so from Oct 31 – Nov 28, we totaled a good 18 lengthy emails of mutual support. And to think I haven’t ever met Pammy?
Her comment on my recent post on Monica my spanish graciella, just confirmed Pammy’s generous heart (come back friday to read my review of the book she co-authored with her twin Lynnie). Pammy wrote: ” You know, my own response to such a request from you would be the same: “Why of course, Marie, come here, stay with me, whatever you need, anything at all that I can do…” and she signed off: Your friend and a small but loving member of your large “web family,” “Pammy”!
I mean, reading all this, isn’t it a shame that we sometimes are quick to shun anyone off once we hear the label they have or the ‘diagnosis’ they’ve got? If I wanted one myself, I’ll press my shrink and am sure to get one! And what will or should that change? Yeah I have those shaggy moments and do lun sometimes and so what?
Some about schizophrenia
I don’t know which type my Pammy has, not that it changes my esteem and big love for her. There are five different types of schizophrenia, including paranoid, disorganized, catatonic, undifferentiated, and residual. While nobody with schizophrenia behaves normally, the exact symptoms depend on the exact type of schizophrenia. The cause of schizophrenia is not known, but it may be a combination of stress, environment, and hereditary factors. I recently came across a blog post on beyond meds where the above report was promoted. I hope it gets the attention and effect intended.
Dear gentle readers and followers, it’s high time we start taking bigger stock of our own attitudes even towards our own selves. I have come across people who have lost precious ones to this schizo… and in most cases, they tell of the devastating impact of shame and stigma on themselves and the patient.
and to you Dear Pammy, thank you for being my friend, for letting me get to know about this illness more, for getting me worried about you, and for trying to stay in touch when you can. I do love your works and I wish I could visit with you someday.