Today is the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. I am happy to learn that there is good side to this date, August 28th, because for the past five years this date has been a terrible reminder of the lowest point of my life. In essence, my drinking facilitated a very unsafe situation that had huge consequences. At the five year mark I can finally say that there is some real hope.
In the spirit of the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s delivery of his “I have a dream” speech at the March I offer a few dreams of my own …
I have a dream that one day I will no longer shake involuntarily especially at inopportune times. The shaking will disappear because my anxiety no longer gets so high that all my body can do is shake for relief.
I dream that one day I will no longer have to struggle with numerous selves with competing needs. This will no longer be a struggle because I will have successfully integrated my selves into one, and that one is me.
I dream that there will be a day when I will no longer need to see a psychiatrist two days a week. It will be nice to put that money towards other bill categories instead of payments for sessions not covered by insurance.
I also dream that I will be able to spend time in my own home without losing time. I’ll be able to cook and clean in my apartment without becoming dissociative.
I do dream that one day I will not fight with that demon inside me that tries to convince me that I’m not good enough for this life, that I should give up the fight. I will no longer fight this demon because it will be defeated for good.
Most of all, I dream that one day all of us with mental illness will be able to get the help we need, and we’ll be able to get that needed help without making ridiculous financial sacrifices for our mental health. Even more than that, we will be seen as individuals that can contribute to society in the workplace as well as in friendship.