Archives for February, 2011
"You've changed my life today," she said, tears streaming down her bespectacled face. She was standing amidst a crush of people at the Ajax, Ontario Convention Centre on Saturday, February 12 at 10:30 a.m., following a keynote I had just given to 136 members of Writers' Community of Durham Region at their monthly breakfast meeting. She seemed small, diminished, fragile ~ like a little faded, once-beautiful, now-chipped fine china teacup. I knew nothing about her. Had never met her. Inspiration was not on the menu ... "Why?" I asked, dumbfounded, but with a few suspicions. Changing-lives was not my intent that day. Remotely. I hadn't even attempted to be inspiring. I was just talking to writers about "blogging."
Well, I've just proven my point about language. It's constantly changing, evolving, growing. I'm behind the times... In my last post, I assumed (one should never assume anything) that to be "down with" something is like being "down on" something. It never even occurred to me that this phrase would have any other meaning. I'm an idiot. On old, out-of-sync idiot... I was completely wrong. My sweet and darling friend Julie has just informed me that my entire post is completely ill-wrought. And that being "down with" something actually means being in favour of something. I just looked it up. I never dreamed the opposite is true, but it is.
Hi, Zoë ~ I just wanted to weigh-in on the word "crazy," because for some reason in the lead of your excellent post Go Ahead – Call Me Crazy on your blog ADHD: From A to Zoë, you stated that I'm "down with the word 'crazy'." I am not. Quite the opposite... In 1998, Rona Maynard, then-editor of Chatelaine magazine asked me to write an autobiographical article about my psychiatric life. That article was published under the headline "Coming Out Crazy." I absolutely loved it and eventually, I adopted it as my brand. I've had two blogs called Coming Out Crazy ~ other than this one ~ and every time I speak, if it's applicable, my presentation is called "Coming Out Crazy."
So, on Monday, whilst sitting in Dr. Bob's office, I was feeling utterly overwhelmed. I have this harassing disconnect between what I know versus what I feel... We were therapeutically jousting... I did not win. When I left after 60 minutes (which he always gives me, sometimes more) I felt battered and bruised. Beaten. Not the way I usually feel when I leave his office. Lighter. Freer. Buoyant. Hopeful.
When I was a kid, a long time ago, long before I learned about feminism, pre-Betty Friedan, I remember my father joking with my mother. Though on reflection, I don't think his joke was very funny. My father would say to my mother, in jest, because I know he adored her, "Maybe it's time I traded you in for a new model." Sometimes I wish I could trade myself in for a new model... That's not a put-down, but given that right now in my psychotherapy with Dr. Bob I'm struggling with a few very old records that won't stop playing ~ that I cannot break ~ and I'm increasingly upset and disoriented by the values and dynamics of the medical model when it comes to emotional and mental health, I'm thinking it's time for a new model. A new belief system. A new hybrid, perhaps...