The Land Without Shoelaces and Sharps: Two Misdiagnoses
For seven years, I lived afraid of my own mind, only to learn it had been a mistake.
At least once you should live with someone
more medicated than yourself . . .
I have never been prescribed an SSRI for bipolar disorder, and I have been prescribed a hell of a lot of drugs. No one I know has been prescribed only an SSRI for bipolar disorder; it can make a person manic.
Law and Order Criminal Minds
Maybe because we don’t recognize him we’ll be safe? Do any of my students recognize him? Why have I never programmed campus security’s number into my phone?
where windows are mesh and what’s sharp
is banished and what can be thrown
is attached so unless you can lift
the whole building everyone is safe.
If I leave him, can I move in with you?Yes,
playing pet Tetris,
Depakote used “stun!” It’s super-effective!
. . . sealed in amber, a caul
of drugs meant to withstand ants and fire [.]
What if everyone was wrong? The doctors, my family, my friends, me?
. . . because he’d not taken
the microwave apart and strapped its heart
to his head or talked to the 60-watt bulb
on the porch he thought he was better
and flushed his pills . . .
Journal of Clinical Psychiatry
in a society where the concept of the norm is operative, those who deviate from its expectations may be (mis)diagnosed as sick.
This is too much.
. . . I learned you can sit
with someone who’s on the bottom
of the ocean and not get wet
Alysia Sawchyn is a senior features editor for The Rumpus and a fellow at the Sewanee Writers' Conference. Her essay collection, A Fish Growing Lungs, was a finalist for the Believer Awards, and her writing has also appeared in Fourth Genre, Brevity, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere.
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More in this series
It had all started about five or six years earlier, around the first time I fell in love. I didn’t know when it would end.
I have never been anything but this ragged, medicated self; I have never been less aware of the ground beneath my feet.