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My story dealing with schizophrenia.

Thank you for taking the time to watch my video. I hope it helps you in to see me as the person I am. I am a strong, brave, beautiful PERSON. I am even stronger today than when I made that video… When I was in crisis and called out for help. I was VERY BRAVE to reach out for fear of being labeled and not getting help at all. We are all beautiful inside. YOU! ME! Everyone! And most of all I am a PERSON. I am not that label. I am not “a crazy person.”

I am not a "crazy person" or a "Schizophrenic.” Please do not think I am this disease. I have hopes and dreams. I care and can love but sometimes I can experience crisis. I am learning to live with this illness. I have to learn just like anyone with injury or illness must learn how to overcome problems. My biggest problem is the disabling stigma mental illness causes. At my best, I can work and when I cannot I have learned to take it day by day and focus on healing through creativity, calmness and working with health care professionals.

I know people in health care can get burnt out. People can distance themselves emotionally and possibly depersonalize people with schizophrenia. I have had hands waved in my face and been put to the “back of the line” during crisis at emergency centers because it was “mental health”. I feel my life has purpose and quality even if I sometimes experience crisis. I hope for a time when mental illness is viewed like any other illness and all people with mental illness can have hope for their future just as there is hope for people with physical illness. If we can just start to overcome the stigma that is so disabling I believe the rest is not that difficult.