Thursday, November 10, 2011


Schizophrenia was a big word for me growing up. I heard many stories about my grandmother who had trouble taking care of my dad because of her schizophrenia. The stories are now becoming more real as I see someone close to me exhibit psychosis.

The stories of my grandmother came from frustration over her, love toward her, and the gentle wish from family to answer my adolescent questions (that never were completely answered, but I don't think that they knew the answers).

My grandmother did not want to take her medicine. Her medicine caused a paralysis in her face, tremors, and muscle weakness. I don't know what medicine she took. Without medicine, she wasn't always aware of her surroundings. She thought people were the devil, and could have bizarre behavior.

Now someone I love very much has had many hallucinations. They are "spirits" talking, explaining the world. I've seen social isolation, tenseness, lack of emotion, anxiousness, lack of activity and problems paying attention.

The medicine can control the hallucinations but when we we're going through a psychotic episode we don't know what to expect. We keep a close watch. We keep knives away. There are extreme laughing, rocking back and forth crying, screaming, good conversation, and sleepless nights.

I don't know anyone dealing with this. Please leave a comment if you can relate. Thanks.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

If Satan gets me down then God picks me up

I just read an editorial by Andrea Seu where she states, "I'm trying to figure out what I am worrying about so I can worry about it properly." This hit me so profoundly because I have been going through a Beth Moore series on Esther. In this book study, Esther goes through tremondous anxiety for her people, and I have tried to dissect why I am feeling down, depressed, anxious, overwhelmed (you can fill in the adjective) so that it can all be processed.

Today I went to the dentist with Jacob. It becomes a 2 hour visit. I finish the paperwork for my Boys and Girls club job, I read some magazines, I work on my Beth Moore workbook and I still have more time. Before I know it, I am frustrated, tired, and my mind is whirling. Why?

Beth Moore points out how the devil has us telling ourselves that if __________ever happens, then I'll just ________________. Our fears become our vulnerabilities. Once the hold is there it is hard to overcome the feeling of inevitable failure. These same difficulties can become our strengths. For example: "If money is not there (the difficulty) then God will take care of me (the strength). If I stay unemployed (the difficulty) then God has a plan (the strength). If I don't continue teaching (the difficulty) then God desires to accomplish something monumental in me (the strength). If I feel unsure (the difficulty) then God's going to demonstrate His sufficiency to me (the strength). Of course that was personal, but anyone can complete the "If ____________then ______________________" statements concerning their fears.

A couple of weeks ago I was at the hospital with Paul. He was anxious about work which gives him both asthma and high blood pressure, neither of which are good going into surgery. I had many concerns over my yougest child and the health care he needed. My brother called about his employment situation, my son from France called to check in, and my mom called to talk about Paul and my brother. By the time I got home with Paul, just in time for Jacob's tutor, my brain was a mush of anxiety. After much thought and thinking it was too overwhelming for the "If ______________ then ________________" statements. Today I realized, "If I become overwhelmed then I can still serve God." I had proof. I supported Paul, I talked kindly to everyone who called, I was there for my son's tutor, and I managed to feed, comfort, and take care of Paul after surgery. "If Satan gets me down, then God picks me up." If I am overwhelmed then I can still be a blessing. Had I seriously never realized this! I think after difficult days, I curl up and cry. I'm thinking now that this might be okay.

Normally I would grade the day "FAIL." Now I have a different opinion.