My First Amendment Experience

I’ve been impeded from invoking the First Amendment to free speech, and boy it wasn’t fun.  It was sometime in 2009, and I had established a fan club on Facebook, something about a Read Gainsford Fan Club.  Well, the point was not to harass the dude, it was a matter of honor.  I thought Dr. Gainsford would appreciate that.  The few things people appreciate about me!  I have also been banned from having a first amendment to practice certain kinds of religions.  Yes, Blake, I know, if I’m not equally yoked, I can’t be with you.  But when I was with someone else, or attempting to be with someone else, I honestly fell off the deep end when, yes, my parents said I couldn’t see him.  I wished to leave the Catholic church, and all Christian churches for that matter.  I was on the verge of practicing Wicca.  Serves my parents right for telling me my First Amendment right to speak my mind isn’t valid.  Well, the reason why I post this is because I feel what I said about the guns and firearms is a perfectly valid point.  Let’s begin from the beginning, shall we?

WE can’t let guns into the hands of the mentally ill, the severely mentally ill, especially ones who claim to have a “sixth sense”, ones who claim they hear voices saying, “Kill.”  If that’s the case, then I swear, we should never allow them to touch a firearm in their lives.  Why?  Look at James Hulmes, the dude who shot up the movie theater in Aurora.  Someone shot up a shopping mall.  Fort Hood in Texas was shot up twice.  Why?  Because, well, there’s a pattern.  The people who did the shootings were mentally incompetent to use firearms.  Blake’s brother was murdered by a girl who, as all other shooters do, killed herself.  She was mentally ill, on drugs, etc.  Could her health records have saved the man’s life?  Could we have kept a better eye on her?  And worse, she’s sighted.  Sighted women in a place where guns are revered as the weapon of choice do not mix.  And Blake could be in grave danger if he dated a sighted girl in Arizona with any of the following traits:

1. Sight.  Sight would allow her to play the “You can’t see me, I can” game.  My parents have played that with me multiple times.

2. Rapid mood swings and actual threats to kill herself or Blake.  If the girl threatens his life and has sight, compound that with the presence of firearms, and you have disaster.  More to come.

3. No treatment or way to get help.  Camp Verde, while it does have a mental health clinic, is like a lot of places where mental health is a stigma.  I’m sick and tired of mentally ill folks having a stigma against them.  I take medications for that stuff, and it works too well..  My weight has skyrocketed, and I can’t fit into any of my clothes.  It’s amazingly weird to think about it, but being on some of the medications is helpful.  But honestly, my frustrations are kept there, deep down, and it’s so frustrating to not be able to see your boyfriend when his own dear mother is about to fall off the deep end if something isn’t done in her name.  But the stigma against mental health issues is paramount in the way guns are lifted in the air and revered as a “toy” of choice.  While there’s nothing wrong with guns at all, there is something wrong with putting it in the hands of the wrong person.  What about a background check?  So what?  I’d never kill a person with the gun.  IF I knew the purpose of the weapon, I’d use it accordingly.  Canes with swords?  Now that’s just weird.

4. Dominance and constant complaint of suicidal thoughts and without meds, the ability to hallucinate.  I’m sorry, but I can name someone who could also hallucinate and hear stuff in strange places.  Phillip Garrido kidnapped and impregnated a girl called Jaycee Lee Dugard.  Miss Dugard now has to do therapy and other mental health stuff with herself and two kids to look after.  She was set free by California police, but not before she had those two little girls.  Phillip used her as a sex object, but also had crazy stuff going on.  I would never have given Phillip the right to use a tazer, which was the epoch in his ability to kidnap Jaycee.  Phillip had all kinds of resources, including Nancy, his wife.  Anyone who claims that they are hearing voices through ANYTHING is crazy in my book.  And I don’t hear those voices.  Auditory hallucinations should have given people like Phillip a diagnosis of schizophrenia before the kidnapping should have taken place.  A girl with all of those above symptoms and so forth should NEVER think about dating Blake.  Her symptoms, untreated, could spell disaster for Blake and grief, a double dose of grief, for his mother, who suffers a good deal now.  I have a weird feeling she needs to go to a Grief Group.  Nothing like the feeling of telling the set of your peers, “My son was captured/killed/murdered by so and so and it feels horrible.”  The same goes for me.  I can say, “I hate being blind in some places.  You know, those moments where the waitress orders around you, not to you?”  Nothing like those same blind or grieving individuals echoing back, “Yes, we hear you.”  A group for support.  A hotline for peer counseling.  It all makes sense.  As much as philosophy at CCB, Colorado Center for the Blind, seemed a joke, it was more of a “support group.”  Why learn the NFB philosophy?  NFB should stand for something like National Federation of the Blind, who are most likely bumming off the government or their parents.  The sad truth of being blind is that you have to bum off the government in order to live.  Jobs are hard to come by, and my friend Art, remember the guy whose sister treated him like dirt, honestly said jobs were a lucky thing.  I can’t find one, and if I don’t take the A Plus exam, then what?  I can’t do graphics.  There needs to be a test accommodations measure so I can take it and pass like everyone else.

But support groups!  Yeah, see that little flashlight popping in your head, Blake and all others who might benefit?  Yeah, a support group.  No joke.  I have a friend called Torrey, who goes to a grief group.  Her brother suffered similar stuff.  HE committed suicide, and boy does that group make a difference in Torrey’s life.  She and I have become good friends, really good friends.  WE have been in two different groups before, a social skills and a behavioral skills group.  While I’m not exactly fond of behavioral skills, social skills is a joke.  Coffee sucks, and I hate it.  On top of that, the people vary from week to week, and those who are in the group are like … wow.  Some smoke, others have it worse than I do.  I”m lucky I don’t have the problem of smoking.  My Aunt Cathy–not the same Cathy I mention in my blog–smokes her brains out.  I always tease her about it whenever I see her, but she has since tried to kill herself twice.  Evidence of mental illness is all over my maternal family.  Well, Mom’s not bad, but that is sure signs that there’s a problem with some of the men, not the women.  The problem is that Cathy had a husband.  A bad one.  You could say it this way, “She married a bad one.”  But then she lost her best friend to suicide, and without the support of a grieving group of individuals, she could not recover well without being in the hospital AGAIN!  Sarah wrote repeatedly on Facebook about it.  Sarah’s the closest I had to a cousin, a sister, whatever.  Sarah could not really understand that yes, I’m in love with Blake, and there’s nothing I can do about it.  Sarah said it was obsession.  So what is my family doing to her!  It’s like the world is against me, but then again, Blake isn’t.  I so wish his whole family would see this, and see that I’m ranting and raving on because of something I can’t control.

Sight, dominance, and untreated mental illness could lead to disaster.  I’m doing my darndest to treat my symptoms but to no avail, and with no reward.  I’m doing the med thing every morning and night.  Take one pill in the morning, then two pills at night.  What EVER!  No rewards.  No good payment for doing right.  Not from anyone, family, doctors, etc.  No.  Just a big fat belly and no clothes to wear, no boyfriends to see, nothing much worth ranting on about.

And my first amendment rights?  They could be extinguished.  Would medications affect all this?  Certainly not.  I have a right to express myself, and that’s the whole point of this blog, now isn’t it?

Work Adjustment Training and Other Matters

It’s something to go to work and get paid for what you do, but it’s worse to go to work bonded to a state rehabilitation agency who enslaves the blind and makes you do things that are out of the way to succeed.  As much as I care about my boss at the Work Adjustment Training I do three days a week, it’s worthless to look at the curriculum.  What with the office curriculum and stuff that I have to do in order to prove stuff to her and my rehabilitation counselor–what a weird title for someone working with blind people–I have to do more.  Social skills groups so I can be “focused.”  What?  I’m sorry, but if any blind person reads this, they oughta know something about state Rehabilitation agencies.  My Blake is going through hell with Arizona’s because of their “shortage” of counselors.  Bull.  I”m sorry, I won’t write the other syllable in there for fear that someone might think I’m nuts.

Like I’m already nuts.  Blake says his Rehab agency is driving him nuts.  They didn’t call him three weeks in advance so he could tell his dear mother about stuff around that.  She teaches tai kwon do at a studio in her locale, and she also worked.  Well, due to extenuating circumstances not covered in the blog, she went away from her dispatching work.  Oh, dear Miss Cathy, I pray that whatever circumstances hit you, you’re strong against them.  After all, I’ve had worse.  Imagine losing your rights, losing your mental sanity, losing the door that opens to the world.  Imagine being thrown in an iron door room with a sign on it marked INCOMPETENT and a second thing in the window with a picture of me as a baby.  Ok, imagine being thrown out of the living room so that your mother’s golden babies can have all the attention.  That happened at a younger day, but also imagine those golden boys succeeding before your very eyes, and there you are, labeled LOSER, INCOMPETENT, STUPID, IDIOT.  This is something that happened to me.  You are lucky to have sons, even if you might have lost one of them.  So what?  You are lucky to have a husband who can stand up and support you in any circumstance.  CAn’t you say that Blake can have that stuff?  We’re both bogged down, but I always make time for Blake, but if he goes to work, even so, I make time for him.  People who are truly in love make time for each other, always and every day, no matter what.  That’s a healthy relationship.  Why take that away from me?  Why?  I need that because of my illness and because of other issues I won’t discuss here.  Oh, … this is just the beginning.  I could go on for hours about it, but dear friend, I can’t.  I love you.

Ok, I could get pretty teary eyed about it.  Ok, I’m going to do a review of Mockingjay but I do know the first few chapters talk about Katniss going crazy.  Well, imagine you were the ones who saw your friends or peers die around you or try to kill you.  Imagine losing a twelve-year-old friend.  Imagine being told that you are the threat that your country doesn’t want.  Imagine your fellow district tribute falls in love with you.  Then, imagine your city burning in ashes.  Oh yes, Katniss went through all of that, so I can imagine her life with flashbacks, nightmares, etc.  I feel for Katniss because she has to take medications and drugs, but she suffers from a lot worse mental problems than I do.  At only seventeen, she has flashbacks and nightmares and all kinds of hallucinations and such, all signs of situational schizoeffective disorder.  Yeah, weirdness is a part of it, but she’s almost broken down.  Peeta is there for her, even if he has the same issues.  Hey, if anyone had to watch their peers die around them, that would cause such a disorder to haunt them forever.

That is all I have to say, I’ll write more about Mockingjay, and maybe I’ll say something further about why Katniss and I are almost the same.  We’ve had far different circumstances, but the same stuff occurs.