I finished the Quiet Room by Lori Schiller and Amanda Bennett. What an inspiring story of girl with a broken mind; a schizophrenia mind.
She had voices in her head that were finally silenced with the proper medication, treatment and her tenacity to continue working on herself.
She explains, “I still hear the Voices from time to time. I try to take my own advice. I distract myself, lecture myself, and focus on the outside world. I have taught myself to use a little mantra when they reappear: “These Voices are not real. Don’t be frightened. Don’t get upset. They are not real. Don’t let them overcome you. Try and think of what happened just before you heard them. Is there some emotion you can isolate that will help explain why they are here now? They are not real. It’s okay. Don’t be afraid.”
“When I hear the Voices, I shake myself back to reality by using all my senses. If I am riding the train to Manhattan for example, I concentrate on the taste of Diet Coke and the smell of the perfume I am wearing. I look out the window at the changing view, and listen carefully to the sound of the conductor collecting tickets. I feel my own ticket flipping back and forth between my fingers.”
Even though I am not schizophrenic, I can relate to using reality to keep me on the path to wellness, how my voices were alive and walking in reality, voices of the dysfunctional family I left behind.
Medication was able to reduce the voices mostly and when they returned, she formulated ways to not believe them.
My experiences of walking out a dysfunctional family had the Voices on the outside in reality that were beckoning me backwards, and there wasn’t medication that would silence them, instead I had to be silent.
My Voices were sisters, brothers and mother, my father’s voice never appeared.
Voices and laughter, seemingly vanilla requests urging me to stop being so mental, so frightened, so weird, so odd, so standoffish, so separated, so cold, so heartless, so mean, so unkind…just like her voices in Lori’s head, mine too rose against me.
The only medication I have to silence their voices is my truth; it seems to keep them far away.
It is odd that my Voices are real and in living color and they too can threaten my newfound wellness, and perhaps tear little holes in my confidences, eroding newfound peace, as they bounce around like hysterical laughter, wanting me to join in the false hilarity.
There is a small part of me that longs for the old group, yet a much larger part of me overcomes that, knowing what I would be joining.
It is almost like I was raised in a Mental Hospital, and that I escaped into normal, and the old patients are beckoning me back.
And the patients in the Mental Hospital were told that they were living normal, and see me as going into a land of total insanity.
There are even times that I like Lori, have to concentrate on the smells, sights and sounds around me to keep me with reality, to know that I am okay, I am not the one with mental issues or dysfunctional patterns controlling my life, that I have done the due diligence to get me here.
Here the voices are silent.