Saturday, July 11, 2009

A clear day with blue sky

Downtown Clearwater scares me. It was my stomping ground (literally) during some of my worst periods of psychosis. Clearwater is an international base of the Scientology organization's Flag service program. Basically what this means is that the corporate cult of Scientology bought up the whole downtown area, and they are generally the only people who go there, other than people who need to visit the courthouse. But you drive through downtown on your way to Clearwater Beach. I live about 1 mile from downtown Clearwater, and sometimes passing certain spots brings back pretty awful memories (or, at least, colorful ones).

So today I went to the beach my with my mom. My mind reverted to five years ago, four years ago, bad days long ago, when I walked the streets of downtown on a daily basis. I don't talk about those memories much to anyone, but I feel safe in discussing them here. I used to wander the streets following the voices and the signals I saw everywhere, the cues. Some days I thought I was L. Ron Hubbard (Scientology founder) reincarnated, sometimes I thought I was a walking, human "E Meter" (that is the tool of the Scientology cult's scam, where they convince you a machine determines if you are telling the truth, basically). I had moved there because I thought I was a Scientologist. I read a lot of Scientology books when I was psychotic. Luckily, they didn't want the likes of me since I was broke and had little to contribute to their cult of corporate greed.

Oak Ave. is where I lived for a time, in a ramshackle little studio apartment, dilapidated, pathetic and terrifying. When I was at home, I always thought my brain was being zapped with electric currents by the "New World Order"/"Illuminati"/Scientology, so I never wanted to be at home. I went out and walked. I walked to the library where I thought I was reading people's minds, and absorbing information in books simply by looking at the books on the stacks. When I did actually read anything, it was about Scientology or physics or Manchurian Candidates. Most of the time I couldn't concentrate to actually read at all.

My mom and I drove by the trolleys today. There are trolleys that pick people up at the bus station and take them to the beach. I rode those trolleys a few times, during my adventures. I would get on one, because the cues told me to (cues meaning signs, voices, things people say, song lyrics, etc), and I'd ride it to where the cues told me to go. I never actually had anywhere I needed to go on the beach, but when you think you're a CIA agent or L. Ron Hubbard or Jesus, then you naturally think there are some majorly important things you should be doing with your time.

Once, I set off to find the home of my muse, Tom Cruise. I adored Tom back then. Tom would go on television and tell the world that psychiatric drugs were poison, which was one of the main reasons I didn't want to take them, as I believed they were, literally, poison, so I understood Tom's points. God only knows how many unfortunate souls have had their lives destroyed because they bought into the corporate scheme of Scientology and became convinced psychiatric drugs and psychiatric treatment were evil things. (There have been some deaths documented due to this.)

While we were riding by my old stomping ground, I told my mom a few, tiny things about those days. I rode the trolley all the way till the last stop once. It's kind of funny to recall that now. Sitting in a trolley, thinking you're reading minds and people are reading your mind and you're on a special mission with some important duties you must fulfill that are never, quite clear enough.
But some things I don't talk about, as my mom doesn't really like to hear about it. I used to wander the streets in the middle of the night, trying to stay away from the electricity zapping me inside the apartment, and looking for things I was hearing I must find. I once ran into a creepy man that tried to solicit me for prostitution and I had to run away down the street at 3 AM. I was skinny then, and relatively attractive, not that it matters. Any woman walking the streets at 3 AM is a target in this patriarchal society in which we live. It's not safe. But when you're psychotic, you do things that aren't safe. I did them all the time.

Today I went to the beach with my mind clear. I passed Oak Ave, the library, and all of the Scientology buildings I used to be drawn to. I wasn't scared like I was when I was on my missions back then, or when I was paranoid and thought I was being followed at all times. I looked at the water, as we drove over the bridge to the beach and admired the beauty that is Clearwater, Florida, a place people come to from all over the world, to visit this beach. I laid in the sun, and swam in the Gulf of Mexico, and got sand on my feet and in my shoes, and I enjoyed it. I wasn't followed, or zapped. I wasn't hearing any voices, or hearing double speak, or seeing cues, or visual hallucinations. I knew I was safe, finally, now, in that same spot where I was not safe at all years ago. I noticed the bad memories that came to mind - the things I am not comfortable discussing even on this blog - and I let the memories go, freeing my mind, floating away on the wing of a sea gull. It was a beautiful day.

3 comments:

Wanderer62 said...

Jen, So glad you could revisit a place that would normally trigger your psychosis and not have that happen. You've come a long way. And thanks for this glimpse into your story. I can't even remember most of my various delusions, but you have really good recall. I'm also glad that you enjoyed the beach. So nice to hear.

The Medcalfs said...

Thank you for sharing your story. I am so glad you are doing so good!! It gives us all hope for the future!!
Couldn't find your facebook.There were LOTS of people with your name...
Happy Tuesday from Tennessee!

Joshua said...

I've posted a link of your site to my blog. I hope that's okay. You've said many inspiring things here and I would love to follow your progress as a source of hope for me as I contend with my own illness. Feel free to check my blog out at copingandhoping.wordpress.com
Good Luck with everthing...
-Josh

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