Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Time is of the Essence: How the Story of my Mental Instability Unfolded

Even though I graduated from Fremont High School, I never technically received a high school diploma. When I was in Tennessee, I was flown back to California to finish my senior portraits. As soon as the portraits were finished, I still did not walk out with a GED or diploma. Today, I will discuss with you about the reason behind not graduating high school and working instead of earning my GED.

Beginning in 2007, I had a mental breakdown which involved two hospital visits. I am sure you have heard me talk about this before. However, I wanted to make it clear to you that these visits were not the prettiest visits any hospital could take from myself as their patient. The visits were between two to three weeks long and according to general mental health depending upon the patient’s outcome for the visit, you can be on hold for a maximum two weeks to a month. I was on a 72 hour hold due to problems with my mental health. However, I was released after a month during the first visit. During the first visit, I struggled with areas in my mental stage or stability that involved home and school. Before I was taken to the hospital however, I was struggling with my mom the night before.

Before my first visit to the hospital, I attempted suicide in Maui. Shocking, I know! What happened was I was mad at my family and stood up on a chair and threatened to throw myself over the fourth floor balcony of a nine story hotel. I was later called back inside where I calmed down afterwards.

After we came back from Maui, things got worse and that is how I ended up in the hospital. Let me tell you what happened. I was in my room searching for my jewelry box which went missing. My mother threw things away because I was not keeping my room clean to her satisfaction. When I found that my jewelry box was thrown away, I ran down stairs immediately, and wrestled with my mom until the laptop, which she was working on, came off her lap. As soon as she got up, she twisted my wrist and told me that it was not polite to wrestle her in the first place. I finally ran upstairs and the next morning she ordered that a police officer pick me up from school.

When I got to school that morning, around third period, I was called into the principal’s office. I did not realize what was about to happen until I noticed the officer sitting there waiting for me to sit down so we could discuss the process. About thirty minutes later, I was taken to Valley Medical Center in Santa Clara where I was evaluated for 72 hours. After this, an ambulance escorted me to a hospital in Concord, California. I was released a month later.

Now let’s go deeper.

During my time at home in January of 2008, I did something drastic that involved a 911 call from my mom. Though I don’t remember what I did, I can safely tell you that it was not a nice sight to be handcuffed and taken again to the same Medical Center in Santa Clara Valley.

Regardless, after two to three weeks in the same hospital, I was flown to Utah where I stayed for under two months. This is where I was evaluated for mental illness and a diagnosis was confirmed. After all this, they found a placement for me called The King’s Daughter’s School in Columbia, Tennessee. I was really excited about getting moved there and could not wait to make new friends and meet new people.

When I was placed at The King’s Daughter’s School in Tennessee, I was not happy the first few days. In fact, to be honest, I was shy. I did not want to be out of state away from home. However, I knew that being out of state, I could at least graduate with a certificate of completion from the state. I honestly thought that what I received was equivalent to a high school diploma and I was mistaken.

It turns out that what they gave me was a certificate of completion from their state to their satisfaction. According to the school, if you graduate, you are graduating with a completion of the required IEP’s which are held once a year. During this meeting, staff and parents (if you are living with your parents before you came to the school or are state conserved) discuss your goals and how well or not so well you have been doing in the school. There is also another meeting that involves your house parent in which you and them discuss your goals and objectives regarding the home care you are in. My meetings went fairly well for the three years I was there and they were very impressed.

When I finally left Tennessee after graduation, I was moved back to my home in California and got situated in a Wings Program. I never graduated from that program because about eight months later, I had my third hospital visit. This time, it was drastic. I attacked my mom’s portrait with a knife and she called 911. I was interviewed by a police officer while his partner interviewed my mom and they agreed that I needed to go to the hospital. A few minutes later, I was handcuffed and taken down to Valley Medical Center where I was once again, evaluated for 72 hours. After 72 hours, I was escorted in an ambulance to a hospital in Fremont.

That is how I met my care providers and moved to the Central Coast of California.

When I first moved to the Central Coast, I was really bad. I will be honest though, I carried in a LOT of baggage from my past as mentioned in the above paragraphs. I learned a lot from these experiences though. I have been in trouble a few times, but we will not discuss that in today’s paper.

Despite ups and downs, I have learned in the long run about family. My grandmother and I finally connected thanks to my care provider “opening the door” for us to connect. I will let you know briefly that we have had a few problems ever since we connected, but things are much better now thank you Jesus!

Now, I work at Social Vocational Services in California off the Central Coast close to Salinas. I enjoy my time working at Meals on Wheels, and enjoy exercising and working on my goals and learning to become more independent. I work at Meals On Wheels three days a week, and if I am not working there, I can be found at the center or out in the community. I am learning how to properly budget my money both at home and at work.

In conclusion, I knew that even though I do not have a high school diploma, I know that there are possible opportunities for me on the horizon. I also know that my God will help me accomplish everything I encounter with his help. I know that I was made for this world and I am more than a conquer.



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