Matt Samet writes in The Other Side at the Mad in America site, about benzo withdrawal and the spiritual lessons he learned. Many aspects of his journey are also applicable to recovery from schizophrenia – to take the longer term view, and learn to make the most of the downtime. I’ll expand on his point below to include parents and family members. As a parent, I wanted Chris to be fully recovered as quickly as possible, and there were long periods then and there still are, when focusing on short, medium, or long term goals, is very discouraging and self-defeating.
How did you do it — how did you get better? (And I am better, almost completely so!) And of course, “Will I get better too?”
The easiest answer and the first one I turn to is also the simplest: time. I did my research, realized it would likely take months and years — not weeks — for my brain and nervous system to normalize to something resembling a baseline state, and I made my peace as best I could with a time span then ultimately unknowable, even as I craved nothing more than its end. Even as I prayed for a fast-forward button on my very life so that I might wake up some magical, sun-soaked morning no longer paralyzed by a swarm of profound and horrific symptoms.
But time is only half the equation, because the true crux is what you do with that time. There is no fast-forward button on life, and I don’t believe there should be. Why treat your stint on Earth, even the darkest hours, like slogging through an eight-hour shift at some crappy, low-paying job?
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