Sunday, May 18, 2014
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
What you can't see in this photo is the taser wire from when I was shot with a taser gun in my own home.
My home was filled with people I didn't know, my advocate had left. The police had come and insisted I go to the hospital because an involuntary commitment had been issued. I had no choice and they had no choice. They wanted to get it over with. I needed time, I told them this is my life we're dealing with.
I never raised my voice or became combative, I was trying to wrap my mind around going to a place I knew I wouldn't come out of because of my history. They wouldn't listen to the options I was giving them. I turned my back and faced my art table and suddenly I was grabbed from behind by a policeman and an emt. I was frightened by the sudden assault and grabbed what I could. It was a small palette knife from my table. They had my arms out stretched and I was completely restrained. I could do nothing to help myself.
Suddenly someone yelled there is something in her hand. I was released and pushed back, I looked up just in time to see the policeman shoot me with the taser gun. I never felt so much pain. I couldn't breath and I thought my heart would explode. I was then insulted, handcuffed and charged with assault and battery upon a police officer. I was charged and dragged through criminal court.
The only reason I grabbed the palette knife was because of my traumatic history, I was frightened from being assaulted from behind. It was pure instinct to protect myself, there was no intent to hurt anyone. I never waved it or raised it at anyone but that was put in the report to justify shooting me.
Life goes on and this past week through Dance in the Rain I put on an art event called Mindset it feature my art and another artist. We brought together the mentally ill peer community , the mental health community and the community at large to view some thought provoking art and perhaps help rethink their views on the mentally ill, mental illness and recovery.
Below is the video I made from the event from pictures my friend took.
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
I have come to learn that people with mental illness are viewed as 'lesser than'. Events can happen to us and there isn't even a blink of an eye. If it happened to the general public there would be uproar.
There is much to think about when one thinks about the stigma associated with mental illness. It's far more outreaching than one can even imagine unless one lives it and experiences it every day and in every aspect of life.
August 20 2013
Saturday, July 20, 2013
The portion of the article that triggered and angered my was as follows: "Once the man resisted officers who were trying to restrain him until rescue personal could arrive, the officers had to use a Taser to subdue him." The man was 52 years old with a wound from his palm to his elbow obviously in crisis and he was Tased while awaiting rescue because he resisted the officers restraints.
I sent the following letter to the editor of the paper:
Since my writing was a letter to the editor it had to be reduced to 200 words. The following is the link to the printed letter in the Cape Cod Times: http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130718/OPINION/307180343/-1/OPINION02
It's important for people to speak out against things like these happening in the mental health system.
What are your thoughts?
Thank you for reading my post M.E.M 7/20/13
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
In 2005, I was taken from my home and my children. I would never return to that home and live with my children again. I left my home that day in September of 2005 escorted by a policeman to a waiting ambulance. The last thing I said to my 17 year old son was "I really screwed up this time didn't I?" He never said a word.
In 2013 it has take me all this time to understand that, no I didn't screw up. I did the very best I could possibly do with all that I had available to me at that time. With all that was going on in my life and within my body I did my best. Who could possibly ask anymore of me? I had no more to give and that's okay.
It's not only the weight of Stigma from others we feel. It's the stigma we put upon ourselves that's most damning .
May 2013, I have lived and live experiences beyond experiences. Some I share and others I do not. My life is still painful. I still live within a broken and fractured system called "the mental health system''. I think perhaps the stigma held within the mental health system itself keep people with mental illness from recovering. Until they stop trying to fix us and begin dialogue with us the system will continue to hurt and stigmatize us more.
I called this post: Coming Full Circle because ...
I've learned to take all the bits and pieces of my life and use them to speak out and offer solutions. I have spent the past 8 years in what I call intense study. Now my experience, creativity and gained knowledge has helped me come full circle and create: