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I Am No More October 22, 2009

Posted by Crazy Mermaid in Delusions, ESP, Hearing Voices, mental illness.
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I admit the first time I heard the voice of my boss, Mark, I was surprised.  Driving down the freeway on my way to work, although he wasn’t in the car or on the cell phone, he spoke to me. I realized immediately that I had a special power: ESP. It didn’t seem unusual at all to be gifted with special powers, and it didn’t even cross my mind that I could be mentally ill.

I assumed from the very first time I heard Mark’s voice that I would be able to simply stop hearing the voices whenever I chose to, and that was how it worked at first. As the voices slowly increased in number- around 50 at the high- they also increased their grip on my mind, ultimately refusing to leave my mind. When I eventually begged and pleaded with them to leave, they wouldn’t go away.  That’s where the strength of my personality played into the situation.

I should have been terrified when the voices wouldn’t leave. I should have sought immediate medical intervention when I felt my mind being smothered by theirs, wrapping their thoughts around mine and choking me off  like morning glories on a rhododendron.

But because of the nature of my personality, I felt strong enough to handle the situation. I had always succeeded in everything I had undertaken before, so this wouldn’t be any different. I fought hard to keep a sense of self, knowing that I would prevail, despite the increased smothering of my ideas by theirs. To keep things from unraveling, I learned not to express fear. To express fear brought on the evil voices. But to embrace the voices with love kept the voices slightly off-balance. Where there should have been fear in me there was a sort of pity for them.

My saving grace was that the voices never learned how to read my own independent thoughts. This situation is hard to articulate even now, but suffice it to say that they tried to smother and replace my thoughts with their own, but they never knew what my thoughts- my real thoughts- were.

Trying to maintain my separate being from being taken over by the voices was like being in a room with someone fighting for possession of increasingly more space. Never satisfied with taking just a part of the room, they moved their line of possession to increasingly larger sections of the room. As long as I could maintain even a tiny portion of the room, I could hold on to my identity.  That was what protected me from total destruction.

Eventually, the voices took over my entire mind, cleanly breaking my mind off and replacing it with their own, plunging me into a total and complete break from reality. Their reality became my own.

In the days and hours before my involuntary commitment to the mental hospital, my independent personality was a sliver of what it had been before the mental illness took over. As my husband drove me to the emergency room, the last shreds of what used to be me disappeared, replaced in totality by Pangea the Mermaid. I was lost forever.

Only strong medication administered in a mental hospital under constant supervision broke their thoughts from my mind. But as their claw-like grip on my mind receded, what remained in the room was not what used to be there. The thoughts took over my mind and therefore my identity, and the medication that replaced it also replaced my identity. Either way, my personality was destroyed first by the voices and then by the medication. The mind emerging from the tunnel isn’t the mind that entered it. I am no more.



1. Kayakchick - October 22, 2009

Absolutely captivating post. The title, “I am No More” gripped me and I knew I had to read it. You help me to understand what it would be like to experience a psychotic break. At first you see a very faint crack, so faint it is barely visible. Then gradually you see more and more tiny cracks, but in the end you see a vase that is about to self-destruct.

You are still very intelligent, and have a fabulous sense of humor. Although I think I can grasp why you feel that in some ways, you are no more, you actually still have some amazing qualities. I know that the sun has just begun to rise on your glorious future.

2. Crazy Mermaid - October 22, 2009

And then the vase blows up. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I think it’s some of my best stuff yet. Thanks for the kind words, Kayakchick.

3. Serial Insomniac - October 23, 2009

Completely agree with Kayakchick – an excellent post, if a difficult one, because it is so sad that you lost so much of who you were before the voices came. That must be one of the most difficult things to deal with.

For what it’s worth, again I agree that you are still very intelligent and humourous, and I do hope you’ve been able to come to terms with who you are now, even if that’s not who you were used to being historically.

Take care of yourself.

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