fallen, standing - my life as a Schizophrenist
This book is a start of just one journey that I had to travel. Although I have written my narrative in other journals, articles and newspapers, this is one part of my whole. I have many more to share, in their own time.
Every narrative in the book itself has a separate book in the making because this is what life is. Schizophrenia doesn’t go away because life doesn’t - hence my persistent connection to the death ideation.
I use the word as a philosophical premise. Memories keep getting triggered causing a chain reaction. With every reaction comes another story to tell and uncover…another path of healing. This to me is the ability of being a ‘Schizophrenist’ – that is a person who absorbs all the meaning around the world by manner of different senses and tries to find meaning in the world she is woken up too which is perceived to be madness.
If I had not had schizophrenia I would have been dead. To me my madness is an ongoing response and defence mechanism to the world outside of me. There is no stand still in the world outside of me. There can only be a silence within me. This too is a part of schizophrenia.
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I love the brutal honesty, the bit about demons, choosing to embrace and confront them while the rest of us have shun and hid them away. I cannot wait for the next one.
Yamini age 15
Thanks so much for this book. We all needed this. Parents, doctors and all thinking and feeling people.. For everyone to pause, think, reflect and make a change. Change in the way we think, feel, act, react. Hope the world becomes a little better place to be in after this book.
My favourite detail is the word in the sub-title "schizophrenist", as though schizophrenia is something one practices, like a dentist practices dentistry. Thus, a schizophrenist practices schizophrenistry - the art of turning words into pictures by association, without social or aesthetic constraints.
Todd Murphy, behavioural neuroscientist
Reshma goes on quite a journey through familial tensions and Schizophrenia. She describes her life before her breakdown as a rebellious teen and continues her story through college when things unravelled for her. She details going to various therapists and trying different treatments, some of which had substantial unpleasant side effects and then finding her way through and developing her own coping strategies. Throughout the naration Reshma is quite forthright and honest, she doesnt shy away from describing her difficulties. Her indomitable spirit shines through the telling of all she has been through. Her book is a highly thought provoking and captivating read. I really enjoyed her story and read it from start to finish in one day.