Today’s blog entry is an image related to both schizophrenia and peer support by artist and Peer Support Worker, Bryn Genelle Ditmars. His explanation of the image is below. Enjoy!
My experience of being a Peer Support Worker has been like reaching a beacon of light at the end of a long tunnel of darkness and struggle. Whereas before, I
was suffering, now I am helping others. This image speaks to me on several
different levels. First, there is the light of truth, symbolized by the candle
flame. Truth reveals that which is, both before the onset of the mental illness
and after the mental illness is managed. Second, there is the world, symbolized
by the flower, which appears to remain a constant element. Third, there is the
face of the person, with an expression of fright and surprise and panic on one
side, and on the other side with a distinct expression of determination and
confidence. Finally, there is the word “Schizophrenia”, a diagnosis that is
ascribed to one percent of people worldwide. In my personal experience, the fact
that I have survived my schizophrenia to the point where I am also able to help
others overcome their schizophrenia, this fact is very nearly proven by the
presently apparent title I now hold as ‘Peer Support Worker’. I have quite
literally taken an about-face turn, as to how I view my illness. In my victory
over the “Schizophrenia”, I am now both confident in my recovery, and determined to maintain my health and happiness. We all have the ability to look at this from a fresh perspective. I believe I can help my clients do so.