Because I’m Schizophrenic

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17 December 2011

Dear Readers,

Just an update, not expecting this post to create any sort of buzz. I would be writing this in my personal journal, but we’ll see, might just post it up on Porcelain Utopia.

My own time…

While I got 11 hours of sleep last night, from about 4 PM to 3 AM—that is 11, right? My sleep is still off the mark, and while I met with my psychiatrist on Thursday, then my psychologist Friday (yesterday)—I have had a pretty solid good 2 weeks past. Then besides the Internet, TV and phone services going on and off, all I want to do is take one single day, especially today, and not do any “work”—if you call this work—and spend the day without a shower, in my PJs, watching James Bond, and the Twilight Zone DVDs I own. And no meditation, nothing bad and nothing great—

I cannot.

Instead, I’ve been feeling “off” and frustrated, alarmed, confused, wanting to help others, to talk with friends on the phone—to catch up—to kill the time—nothing Zen about it.

Just spending the weekend hanging around.

This “thing” (the artist in me?) keeps “telling” me to create, do—do—do. Make. Help. Communicate. Work. Make sure to post inspirational blogs in between the transgressive fiction chapters of Porcelain Utopia so to keep the audience… inspired.

I cannot depend on public feedback to dictate what I do and don’t do.

Ahh. Big breath. I’m working on CBT techniques to get through this one—a tough one, but I’ll do it. What is my heart telling me? —No matter what the public feedback will or won’t tell me… What do I feel like writing and doing? Transgressions, raw writing, the light and the dark, inspiration, gangsta rap music and love songs—Zen Buddhism and erotic fiction—

All of the above…

Given the time and feeling of the moment.

For this moment, I choose to write these few things that are on my mind. Posting them and then letting it all go.

Nature vs. Nurture…?

I’m human and my sleep is off. Naturally I’m feeling “off” today. I still have tools. Some minor things were bothering me, real petty things, like a Facebook post someone wrote—silly to get all pissed off about it. It was about some celebrity having lost weight. It sounded like everyone was so grateful and mesmerized by her losing weight and ‘setting a good example for the children.’ Why should that bother me? I mean, good for her. I actually can relate. I lost 90 pounds, having gained 100. Anyway, I thought it was hysterical. Like, what a big deal? Yet disturbed by the enthusiasm.

“OK. Seems like schizophrenia is watching through the peephole. Waiting for me. Ready to attack. Ready to ‘seduce’ me…”

Shortly afterwards, I started feeling ‘unloved by all’. Once that belief landed, I thought:

‘OK. Time Out. Now!’

Two very minor feelings eating me away, like I was old wood for termites, I took a shower—cleansed myself for real, and metaphorically. I thought of the CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) techniques I’ve been getting more involved with—with my psychologist, and on my own; also through books using the CBT model. What evidence is there in rational support of my feelings? I ran what I call a “reality check” and it was confirmed: the Facebook dialog was, in fact, said jokingly. I was interpreting people being overly concerned about some B-lister ‘turning her life around,’ yet it was, in fact, being written by all involved in candid humor. And as for the feeling ‘unloved by all’ bit? Sorry to say this but F—- THAT! That is simply NOT true—AT ALL.

That’s when I knew…

I knew then, when that feeling came up. I just knew it. I just freaking knew, OK—2 ‘Good Solid Weeks’ and, so what, but the Sz wants to seduce me again. It feeds on fear. It feeds on confusion, sleeplessness, and stress. I was “alone in the bar” and “this a**hole tried to pick me up.” That’s what it felt like. Excuse the weird analogy, but that’s what I kind of saw in my head, a momentary daydream—of the schizophrenia—and me both looking for…something. I didn’t take it. It didn’t take me.

I dried up, dressed, told my friends I’d talk to them another time, just that I’m going through some lack of sleep issues. I left it at that. That was covered. I was safe and sound. The feeling of not being loved—as crappy as that feels, believe me, I did not let that one last inside me for much more than a minute or two. The feeling of “I’m unloved by everyone,” comes up a lot, and this time it was that precise feeling which, instead of eating me up for hours, was eliminated from my entire being nearly on the instant. I knew. I plain knew: Ah ha! Schizophrenia/Schizoaffective—that was clever, but now, “You’re acting ‘insane,’ Mr. Schizophrenia, as you try to use that same trigger/feeling/’action,’ expecting the same result. Guess, what? Schizophrenia—right back at you, you S.O.B.”

A horrible feeling actually enlightened me (‘opportunity in the negativity’)—there you go: I have spoken before about the “patterns” within the chaos.

Truly-known-to-me as “thoroughly insightful—” enters my very own beautiful, wonderful wife, Maureen—she writes me and tells me the greatest things, memorable things. I know she loves me. I just received this message from her a minute ago:

“Being human is hard enough, sweetheart, add schizoaffective disorder—and geesh, dang near impossible.”

-Maureen Cooke-Harnisch

*   *   *

“Hate me…because I’m Schizophrenic”

The last thing that was on my mind.

Just write… just write…

One of these apps I have that shows statistical data for this website showed me that someone had actually, and I don’t know how many times this has happened, but he/she had landed on my website this morning via a Google search that was typed in exactly like this:

“my friends hate me because i’m schizophrenic”

This just broke my heart. Apologies for my language, but f@#king broke my heart. Maybe it wasn’t true? Like Harvey Milk would have said to his homosexual friends and followers, but for me, Schizophrenic to Schizophrenic:

“Hey man, believe me, stigma is everywhere and those are not your damn friends.”

I would do anything to find out who ran that search, and just embrace him (or her) and take away everything in the world that causes him/her to even have the idea. “Friends? Hate? Me? Because? I am…”


Because I have schizophrenia.

Maybe I would say all of that differently. Now I think I understand why some people rally and protest and activate politically. Boy oh boy, I weep. I weep on this one.

If you are reading this, the person who searched that sentence and somehow landed on my page: Porcelain Utopia. I don’t know who you are or where you are but:

I love you.

Love… Respect. Honor—Just for typing that in—For feeling that. I know the feeling well. But please let that go. I could probably say it more compassionately but I write this in haste. It’s not you I’m disturbed by and it’s not you causing me to say this as I am—out of pure fury—it’s against those “friends” that hate you because you’re schizophrenic. It could very well be the truth. People do hate other people because they have schizophrenia, but please take my word on this. Please, please, please…

Don’t let that bring you down.

It is so not worth it, my good friend—wherever you are in the world. Please believe me, don’t let that bring you down. You rock! You are perfect just the way you are. And with all sincerity, thank you for typing that in, wherever it took you. Wherever you go from there and however it all turns out for you. I’ll likely never know.

You made me not feel so alone. Don’t let it bring you down. You’ll see.

Just give it some time.

Jonathan Harnisch




About Jonathan Harnisch

Author | Mental Health Advocate | Schizophrenia | Artist | Blogger | Podcast Host | Patent Holder | Hedge Fund Manager | Film & TV Producer | Musician
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