I wrote a book. Actually I have written a couple of books. This for some reason has never struck me as a great feat that I have accomplished and should brag to the world. There are a lot of books out there and probably even more sitting in someone’s hard drive waiting.
But I have learned something about myself this last year. I am a writer. I am a pretty good writer. And this need, the requirement, to write is exactly what I believe I am supposed to be doing for the rest of my life. Others feel the need to act, or to dance; I feel the compulsion to write. I write pages that no one will ever read and I write large posts to try and get a point across. Writing for me is simply a way that I can give my own knowledge to inform, comfort, and ultimately receive.
I have written a book for the loved ones of those with mental illness. It isn’t a book that is going to really help the mentally ill except in an abstract way. Instead it is for the mothers who cry when no one is watching, for the frustrated fathers, for the confused siblings and even for the incredibly brave spouses out there. It is for those who love even when it is really hard to do so.
Broken into twenty-five chapters, with an introduction and a final word, the book consists of a few major points of mental illness. Can you imagine having a mentally ill person in your life who you love completely but are unable to actually touch? Well, maybe one of these chapters will explain why; or maybe one of these chapters will simply explain what it is like to be so far out of reach that not even in the best of hours does your love one know how to reach back for you. The book simply gives the reader an idea of what it is like deep inside of the brain of a mentally ill person.
I am a mentally ill person but rather than write my personal narrative that not even I want to read, I decided to help love ones who may need just a glimpse in what a mind is capable of. Some of the chapters are directed in a straight forward manner to the reader – guilt, disappointment, the meds; while other chapters are more vague touching on subjects such as the voices, the mads, the body’s physical response to mental illness. No book about mental illness can be all consuming and that isn’t my goal; instead I simply want a chance to show the reader a different side of a confusing and often misunderstood reality in this world.
I wrote this book for my mother. To this day I have no idea what my mother feels in regard to me having a mental illness; she has never shown me in word or deed. But I can only imagine the sheer horror, the fear, the guilt that must accompany having a child with a very pervasive disease. I can only imagine how hard she must pray each night hoping that the phone never rings. However, if that day so long ago she had access to a simple book that would have given her some clue as to what was happening, what was coming and her vital role in it, I know without a doubt that this would have brought her great comfort. And if we aren’t here to help, to comfort others, why exactly are we here?
The book is done. But it needs much better editing than I can give to it before it is ready for the world. So as much as it kills my pride I am asking for donations through GoFundMe so that I may hire a competent and respected editor to read the manuscript and help me to get the book to the right publishers. I am not fond of asking for money, call it my pride or my stupidity. But I need to give this book a chance; I need to help and I believe this is the way I was meant to. It won’t be the only book I publish, even about this subject, but it is the first.
I am asking you to help me give the lost and a little disoriented loved ones of all of us a simple and easily understood idea of what mental illness looks like from the inside out. And while I am honest enough to admit my mental illness is not everyone’s, there are common denominators that might just save all of us. At least we could try.
Please donate any amount you choose (do not use rent money for this):