Not long ago, I volunteered at a state conference for NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. I was able to see a few speakers throughout the event.
One lecture I went to was on schizophrenia. I was very interested since I have a thought disorder (schizoaffective disorder). The psychiatrist speaking was a good speaker, intelligent and down to earth. He spoke about getting through the illness and to the person.
There was time for questions. Hands were raised and you could also fill out questions on paper. I filled out the paper and waited, but he never read mine. The audience was mostly clinicians and family but there were a few others with the diagnosis, like me.
Afterwards, there was time to talk with the speaker. i waited for my turn. Finally, I got to ask him my question. He said he had not read it because there really is no answer. I asked about remission. I have been stable for years. I have pretty much not had psychotic symptoms for 10 years (I am on medication). But, still I wait for the other shoe to drop. When is it going to happen again?
My question was “When can I take a breath and not worry about relapse?” His answer was simple. “Breathe Everyday”. You aren’t having symptoms now. Enjoy the moment.
Originally published in “Invisible Illness”