25 October 2010

I don't think I've ever thought of myself as just a crazy person. there have certainly been times when the crazy was pretty much all-encompassing - that is the nature of psychosis, it really captures one's attention. psychosis requires a lot of mental attention - in being occupied with disturbing thoughts, in focusing one's mental energies to try to come down from what feels like a panic attack but goes on way too long, in just being disrupted, forgetting things and having difficulty concentrating, in talking to nurses and doctors about one's mental state twice or three times daily - despite which, the tendency among patients is to deny that they are ill, or the extent to which they are ill. paranoia and delusions feel very important, they feel more than real. they can lead to very intense empathic leaps; connections seem hyperreal, language hypertextual. later maybe I don't remember everything, besides which, excising the crazy from one's baseline thinking becomes a way of getting better or avoiding death by embarrassment. talking about it can be normalizing for what is mostly a traumatic experience, but crazy isn't an identity. even then I would be trying to read.

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