I took several photos for Instagram and Twitter. But as I took the photos, an unsettling awareness lingered throughout my body. In the near future, this uneasy discomfort would evolve, intensify, and become a part of my daily existence. It was one of the first samplings of what it feels like to live with acute psychotic delusion. Nevertheless, I carried on with my project. And as I photographed the mourners, I was certain that someone else was watching, photographing and following me from store to store.
And there I was . . . all alone in the passenger front seat. . . keys left in the ignition. My manic mind an overpowering competitor against my ability to maintain reasonable and rational thought. The possibilities were overwhelming. The temptation too powerful. And without pause, I leapt over the console into the driver’s seat, wrapped my hand around the keys in the ignition, and gave them a forceful turn. I threw the gear into drive.
Psychotic tendancies didn't appear in my early twenties as they often do with the many that find themselves waging a mental war fretted with hallucinations and delusions during that age. My constant deliberation with the the probability that I might be hunted at large by an underground sex cult didn't reveal itself until into my mid 40's. But my late twenties bore tell tale signs of possible trouble ahead.
But now, in my darkest days of living with psychosis, this bittersweet memory provided the fuel to substantiate the conspiracy. Now, I could only reference the forced study buddy system as clear evidence. It was all the proof I needed to confirm my belief that my mom was part of a clandestine government initiative to create a private citizen that was covertly engineered and conditioned for the greater good.
I can think of no better way to express how I'm feeling. Drawing a caricature of myself, I perch naked and wild-eyed, perilously teetering on the edge of a stool. A noose hangs loosely around my neck. The caption reads, "Yes, I can breathe . . . but it's still a noose."