Speaking at The Regional Mental Health Center

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It’s been quite some time since I last wrote on this blog.  Too long, in fact.  I think that an update is in order.  Since I last wrote, I was able to do a presentation of my poetry and speak about the therapeutic value of writing to an audience at my home state’s regional mental health center.  It was a fun, exhilarating experience.  I was able to share my work not only with some of the patients, but also with the administration of the hospital.  This experience has made me more thankful for my ability to write and more thankful that I’m doing as well as I am.

I wasn’t very nervous about the talk I gave at all.  It was the first real presentation of any kind I gave since I was in college.  But I received several compliments and was asked many questions.  I suppose that not only did I give encouragement to the patients, but I also shed light on what it was like to be mentally ill from the mentally ill person’s perspective.  It was a trip that was well worthwhile.

I often get down on myself for not having a job and for the bad days that I have.  But this trip to the state hospital put it right in my face that I could be doing much worse.  It has also led me to being more resolved to act as an advocate for others with mental health issues that aren’t able to write or speak for themselves.  I am going to keep writing and addressing for others.  In fact, it may be my main passion in life.

I never knew I had any kind of writing talent until after I became mentally ill.  I had to find out the hard way that writing is my outlet for my frustrations.  I always made up stories on my own as a kid, but never put them on paper.  I may have to try to do that one of these days.  The first two drafts of novels I wrote were not very good.  Yet I found out what I had to work on and what I could do better.  I probably should try to write some of my stories I made up in childhood.  

In closing I’m sharing with you two of the poems I shared with the audience.  I hope it sheds some light on what it’s like to be mentally ill.

 

The Burdens of Mental Illness

By Zach Foster

 

My mental illness is a burden to be born

Around my neck it is sadly worn.

Some days are sunshine without pain

While others are darkness and rain.

My pain is not such the world can see

As it’s just the depressed delusions and me.

My anger, searing white hot, comes and goes

Without any warning or notice to be shown.

The echoing voices rattling in my weary head

Fills my heart with panic and soul with dread.

My mental illness is a burden to be born

It dogs me every night and every morn.

 

Ó Copyright 2014 by Zach Foster

 

Weariness

By Zach Foster

 

Weariness pulls at my weakened bones,

Fresh tears pour from my haggard eyes

Lazy, lethargic, and wanting to give in.

Where are my boosters and rocket fuel

To fly with the eagles

Instead of scratching with chickens,

Not caring they are cackling fools

Drunk from ignorance thicker than rum?

I desire a blast from my more energetic past

To bring me free of this weariness,

To put to end all that is pulling down on me. 

 

Ó Copyright 2014 by Zach Foster

 

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Author: alifeofmentalillness

I write about my experiences with mental illness and life in general. I am also currently under going 'lifestyle changes' (I hate the term 'dieting' as it's sounds so temporary) and have lost 70 pounds since spring 2014. I've put my poetry and novel writing on lower priority since I started losing weight and blogging more seriously.

3 thoughts on “Speaking at The Regional Mental Health Center”

    1. I’m sorry I didn’t respond to your post promptly. In answer to your question, No I did not design this website myself. I merely chose from numerous templates available free of charge through wordpress.com. I am glad that you enjoy reading my blog. I will check out some of your posts as well. I believe the official name of my given template is either “Modern 2010” or “Modern 2012”. Once again, thank you for reading my blog. I hope to hear from you again.

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