Shouting at the Wind


I got the third call in two weeks today.

Tim’s psychosis seems to be rearing its head fast and furious this year.  Just this week he’s lashed out at classmates, broken a window, thrown items at and yelled at staff.  He’s told his case worker that the voices are back and are loud.  We went up last Saturday to visit and he seemed good, but he also seemed to be holding on.  We went to a movie and when I turned to him to make a comment or see if he thought something was funny, he was in a trance, unable to be stirred, seemingly staring through the screen, not at it.

My mood has deteriorated with each call.  I am physically affected by each report.  I curse myself for talking about how stable Tim is, and how well he is self-advocating, as if talking about his progress condemned those pluses to eventually failing.  I get a shiver up my spine, thinking about Kelly Thomas and my conversation with a special needs attorney who informed me that, even with legal plenary guardianship when Tim turns 18, I can’t legally force him to stay on his medication and treatment.

I swallow the real fear that Tim will end up living a life in and out of treatment, on and off the streets, in and out of danger, and swallowing it only keeps it down for so long.  Today at my desk at work, it came out in the form of tears, trembling, and irritability.

I drove into the city yesterday, and at a red light I saw a man on a street corner, clearly homeless, seemingly mentally ill, having a conversation with thin air.  It was a highly animated conversation, and, while I couldn’t hear him, I could see the conversation both frightened and annoyed him.  I sometimes feel the only difference between him and me is that his mind allows him to shout his anger at the wind, whereas mine makes me hold it all inside.  I’m starting to feel, either way, the anger is killing us both, equally.

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