As the gold-yellow fall leaves leap into fall’s scenery, my thoughts are mystified at the beauty of the season. The simple things in life come into view. I find that putting away my summer clothes before autumn bursts, helps me un-cloud the obsessive thoughts that creep up on me and prevent me from getting things done. Organizing and focusing on detail, helps to get my mind off of actions weakened by the past. As I open my metallic blue case which I use to keep my roller skates in, I unpack my teal long-sleeved dress, orange, dark blue sweaters, and jackets that were stored for the winter.
I begin to wonder, have the coffee-stained leaves of autumn caused me to feel nostalgic? The parades, enjoying time with children, and dipping my feet in the ocean? All seemed so essential. With the shedding of the warm skies, the velvet greenery and brilliant flowers, questions begin to circulate in my mind. I asked myself, “Did summer rob me of my sanity?” Sometimes I ran around like a bee from flower to flower sucking out the nectar of experiences, carefree and happy as if there was an infinite purpose to my being. Other times I was brought to my knees as I heard news of sicknesses and deaths of loved ones. I finally realized I must have a plan to keep my healthy lifestyle that I have so cherished in the past so I try to take steps to stay well and keep well. So I pack and unpack.
Grieving will take place in the autumn. It will happen on the gloomiest day. If I could suggest one thing for people struggling with schizoaffective disorder it would be to try to get plenty of rest, outdoor light, exercise, and enjoy the beautiful yellows, oranges, reds and golds of autumn. Enjoy the people you are with. When you breathe in the fresh air, your spirits will lift and ripen like the fruit on a tree.
I have written my memoir Sherry Goes Sane: Living A Life With Schizo-Affective Disorder. I want others who have schizo-affective disorder and people around them to know that they can live a happy and useful and meaningful life.