"The label you give yourself cannot impact external forces that are not motivated by your own psychology or influenced by a third party's pre-existing consciousness of you. We are all presented with reasons to struggle which come from completely external forces; to pretend that one is not struggling is either arrogance or an admission of defeat. To admit that one is struggling is a sign and a source of strength." - Evan A. Baker

Friday, September 11, 2009

Focusing on the Positive

Hey Everyone! I'm back! I bet you didn't even know I was gone, thanks to the scheduling option on blogger! Yeehaw!

I went to Burning Man, a social experiment on temporary community, out in the middle of Nowhere NV, filled with alkaline dust and no vegetation and no bugs because alkaline is very basic and nothing lives in it. No ants, no flies, no moths, no shade, no flowers, no grass. No wait, a lot of people brought grass, but to smoke.

If you've never been, I can't explain it. It's an experience that is indescribable in its magnitude of how it changes you. How it opens you up. How it gives you a sense of self you didn't know you were.

One of my favorite parts of the entire music/arts fest was the Temple, a structure that is built at the beginning of the week and then burned at the last night. The Temple is a place for everyone to go and meditate on what they've gained or lost in the last year. It's an open air 3 story building with lacy patterns cut out of boards, very decorative, very beautiful, and they fill the place with Sharpies. You are to write whatever you want, and everyone writes what they wish they could say out loud. So many people wrote messages to those they were finally able to forgive, or to people they lost this last year and how much they miss them, and many write messages about how they love the person they are writing to.

I saw a Sharpie and uncapped it, writing the first thing that I've been meaning to say out loud and to others for the last few years:

"One day, Mom, I will write your story so that others won't have to suffer like you do."

There is a book in my head that I've been wanting to write about my mother, which has been whispering to me for the last few years that it's been patiently waiting for me to be ready to write it. "I'm here." It has whispered, "and I'm going to wait." "You're probably going to wait a long time," I've always said back, annoyed that it's making itself known again. "That's okay." it always says, "You will write me when you're ready."

There is so much pain surrounding my mom, not just with me, but with my Dad, my aunt, my sister, my brother, and this book is going to be a huge process, but I made a promise to myself that I will have a final draft ready by Burning Man 2012.

I want to put a face - a person! - on Schizophrenia. How it doesn't affect just one person, but extended families, so that people can understand it, so that people can care enough to demand a cure.

The first part is research, and I just started "Surviving Schizophrenia," a book I bought 5 years ago, knowing I would read it when I was ready.

Like I said, this is a long time coming. I'm excited. I'm scared. I'm finally ready.


  1. Wow. That event sounds incredible! Nothing like I've ever heard of before. And if its getting you one step closer to facing what you fear and writing the story you are meant to tell, how incredible is that?

  2. I have been dying to go to burning man i am so jealoussss! how much did u end up having to spend total if u dont mind me asking? did u use a tent or a camper? please post pics!!!!



  3. Your courage is so inspiring.

    I adore you.

  4. Yeah it's easy to be the "perfect" mommy when you only have em for a short while! Try everyday.. Then you resort to school lunches


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