I'm smiling. Why? Because I've got something in my life to work for again and hopefully it won't be too painful re-living the last 10 years of my life and get it down onto paper (well technically my laptop). What I do with it I haven't decided, whether to go down the publishing route or just post it on my blog. I'd rather just post it on my blog and let people see it for free, but if I got it published, I could raise a bit of money for mental health charities. I know I wouldn't make a lot but every penny really does count for charities and mental health charities are (so I've heard) really under-funded.
I'm not against cancer charities at all and if I see a child suffering with this horrendous illness, I will get upset and dig in my pocket for whatever money I've got. But mental health isn't as 'popular' as cancer. Cancer scares the living daylights out of virtually everyone, yet mental health is still laughed at by those who haven't experienced it. And despite the adverts on TV, public knowledge of mental health is very limited and people aren't likely to dig deep into their pockets for a mental health charity bucket outside a supermarket. I do give some of my money to charity - I fund a Microloan with World Vision and used to sponsor a child before it got too expensive. But if the general public think that people with mental illnesses should just pull themselves together or that the 'crazy ones' are going to murder you for fun, why would they give money to a mental health charity?
So if I do publish my writings, I will do it with the intention of raising awareness of mental illness and hopefully raising a few quid for charity while I'm at it. I'm in the fortunate position of not being strapped for cash so I don't yet need to make money from writing. I may do one day, but at the moment I don't. Besides money doesn't make you happy. It just makes you miserable in comfort.
For some reason, I've just had a flashback to an incident in hospital - a good and happy incident (yes they do happen!) Three patients and I (one male, two female) were playing scrabble and making jokes. We were laughing so hard that we actually got told to quieten down! (We were told in a nice and apologetic way). But then management found out about our enjoyment and banned us from playing scrabble as men weren't allowed on the women's ward and women weren't allowed on the men's ward and there was no interim space for us to play. Our motto became 'If it ain't broke, fix it til it is!!!' Shortly after our last game of scrabble the other three were discharged and I was alone again, but those good times kept me going for months. And I sincerely hope the other three patients are fully recovered and never heading back into hospital again.
So today, although schizophrenia sucks, life doesn't. Happy, happy, happy!!!