Archive for the ‘ageism’ Category

Myself: A Case Study

March 20, 2017

IMG_0257Myself: A Case Study:

This will be the bleakest blog entry for a while and for that I apologise. The breadcrumbs have been devoured by the birds and there is no way back. I have to create a new future for myself.  This is a kind of SOS.

This is actually about me but I am writing about myself in the third person. What shall I call myself today: Susan perhaps.

My diagnosis was, until recently schizoaffective disorder but the powers that be have chosen to change it to ‘schizophrenia’. Schizophrenia is a cruel disease. It attacks every aspect of your being and even after a successful medication regime has been established there are problems that may seem unsurmountable but they must be faced up to and overcome. At the moment I am experiencing residual symptoms of my disorder: loneliness, social isolation, suicidal thoughts, panic and anxiety. However, my greatest enemy is poverty of expectation in myself and in others. I find myself longing to give into the temptation to curl up into a ball and lie there forever, to succumb to a dreamless sleep.

Right now I am terrified of the future. I have a tendency to catastrophise. I am finding the world almost impossible to navigate. I am nothing, I am passive, a mere observer. I am characterless, A tabla rasa. My self esteem has been ravaged. I feel socially disenfranchised, as if I have no place in the world. I am living on the edge of darkness, huddled down deep inside myself, wondering whether I will find myself again. “it is my portion to die out and disappear.”

I need to bear constantly in mind that there is a solution to every problem. Something as simple as making a list of problems and solutions can be immensely helpful as it helps to put them into some kind of perspective. I have got to this stage and the darkest hour is just before the dawn. I will not let this illness win. I must triumph over this nameless dread. A life lived in perennial fear is no life at all. Time propels you forward. There is no turning back.

https://www.livingwithschizophreniauk.org/

 

 

Karma In Action

April 30, 2012

Telling Stories

Tracy Chapman

There is fiction in the space between
The lines on your page of memories
Write it down but it doesn’t mean
You’re not just telling stories
There is fiction in the space between
You and me

There is fiction in the space between
You and reality
You will do and say anything
To make your everyday life
Seem less mundane
There is fiction in the space between
You and me

There’s a science fiction in the space between
You and me
A fabrication of a grand scheme
where I am the scary monster
I eat the city as I leave the scene
In my spaceship I am laughing
In your remembrance of your bad dream
There’s no one but you standing

Leave the pity and the blame
For the ones who do not speak
You write the words to get respect and compassion
And for posterity
You write the words and make believe
There is truth in the space between

There is fiction in the space between
You and everybody
Give us all what we need
Give us one more sad sordid story
But in the fiction of the space between
Sometimes a lie is the best thing
Sometimes a lie is the best thing

I stumbled across this the other day and then I stumbled across this:

I had an early intimation of the attractions of evil when I was quite small. As a boy, I went to a lot of football matches and was enthusiastic about them in a way that I now find very difficult to understand. Anyhow, there was a cup match which I deemed it of supreme importance that I should attend, and as the tickets went on sale well in advance, I took myself off to the stadium and joined a very long queue. I was about eleven years old at the time.

In front of me in the queue was a group of young men. Going along the queue was an old blind beggar, accompanied by a child with a cap into which donors could put their coins. The old man had an accordion and was singing ‘The Man Who Broke the Bank of Monte Carlo’. As he approached the young men they turned up the volume of the transistor radio that they had with them to drown out the old man’s song, laughing as they did so. The poor old man was bewildered, and walked away as if confused and frightened.

I have never forgotten that little incident, and it has haunted me – not continuously, I hasten to add – ever since. The pleasure those young men took in taunting the old man, and laughing at him, taught me that the human heart is not invariably good; that there is a lot of fun in cruelty. But it also taught me something else.

I did nothing to defend that old man. Of course, it would have been unreasonable, as I now realise, to expect an eleven year-old boy to go and tackle a lot of seventeen year-olds, or however old they were; discretion in this case really was the better part of valour. But I knew then, straight away, that I failed to assist the man from cowardice and for no other reason; and furthermore, no one else in the queue intervened either. As Edmund Burke put it, or is supposed to have put it (there is a brilliant essay on the internet pointing out that there is no source of this famous quote), ‘All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing’.

Sometimes I think that maybe, just maybe, there really is a God.

Addendum: I’d like to remind readers of The Wall Street Journal of the tragic case of Kitty Genovese.

Addendum II:  I must say I can do nothing but agree with the commenter writing here who asserts that, ‘I’ve not read the article, but most of the comments. I find the ‘was ever thus’ mentality never ceases to amaze me.’

Indeed.  We used to hang, draw and quarter traitors.  In these more enlightened times we just throw food at them.  Now that’s what I call progress.

Cut Adrift

March 27, 2010

and the voice it says

you are not possessed

by demons

you are the demon

and you should jump

before you are pushed

i cannot swim

so I am cut adrift

on the whim

of some capricious

medical examiner

Rage, Rage, Rage

January 27, 2010

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Do Not Go Gentle Into that Good Night, Dylan Thomas

Nobby is stoical.  He is stubborn and he can sometimes be downright awkward but he is my friend, my companion.  An unusual friendship perhaps for he his ninety two and I am in my early thirties.  I am not friends with Nobby because he is old and frail and dependent upon me for everyday care.  I am not his carer.  I am his friend. And I am not his friend because I pity him.  He is still lucid and fully in control. Some might say he is too independent for his own good.  Nobby is endlessly fascinating.  He has a bottomless pit of stories to tell.   His boyhood in the ‘thirties. His wartime experiences.  The hardship he experienced after the war.

The elderly have something to offer too.  They are living, breathing, walking history. In a society obsessed with youth it is easy to forget this. People make assumptions about the elderly.  They are ‘past it’. They have lived their lives and have no more to give.  We are wasting what could be a valuable resource and we may one day come to regret it.  Because the way in which we treat the elderly now sets a precedent for the way we will be treated in the future.  And if the way the elderly are treated now is anything to go by we should be afraid. Very afraid.  And there are two certainties in life: you either die or you grow old.  Remember that.

Topical too. Who woulda thunk it?

Some Excellent News

July 4, 2008

A new addition to the internet.  Nobby is to be connected.  His family in the US are buying him a laptop and he is to get an account with Virgin next week.  I am to be his tutor.  I’ll show him ome of the more weird and wonderful sites.  Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?

Going to the Blue Cross on Saturday.  To see all the kitties.  Hope to find a successor to Bella (who will never, of course, be forgotten.).

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