Leaving the Seclusion Room: A Journey to the Far Side of Sanity and Back Again

It’s Mental health month, please take the time to read and share Kathryn’s post, it’s so important for people to gain some understanding.
Thank you, LG

Kathryn M. McCullough

I will forever associate spring with an up-close-and-personal encounter with crazy, with losing my mind in an over-the-top kind of way.   And, indeed, my March Madness of 1990 ended life as I knew it.

Spring brings many forms of madness. Spring brings many forms of madness.

A university writing instructor, I was suffering through what should have been a relaxing spring break, when I began to crumble. In Oklahoma the branches were barely budding, when I started obsessing over trees and their ability to lead me elsewhere, wherever there was. I imagined it was a dimension parallel to the world around me.

A parallel place-- A parallel place–

I wanted desperately to go there, and it was that longing that ached me into action. It muscled me forward, compelling me to bring bare branches indoors and decorate my walls with them. (I kid you not.)  It seemed I was suddenly and acutely aware, as the sculptural quality of those limbs stunned and…

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One thought on “Leaving the Seclusion Room: A Journey to the Far Side of Sanity and Back Again

  1. Such a brilliant description of a mental breakdown. People who haven’t dealt with mental illness in their own lives or in that of a family member really struggle with understanding how it happens and why.

    My oldest boy was diagnosed manic depressive after a destructive event much like the carpet/treebranch episode described in this post. He too was committed to psychiatric care and 7 yrs later knows he must stay on meds and see doctors very regularly if he hopes to stay stable.

    I’ve started seeing these struggles as something very, very positive for him, and wondered if maybe I was sugarcoating things, as I tend to be perennially optimistic. Reading Kathryn’s post only reinforced my feeling that navigating mental illness leads to a certain self awareness and understanding that “healthy” people don’t always attain. My son really “knows” himself, and it seems Kathryn does, too. Thank you for sharing this remarkable post!!!

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