Mentally Ill Dying in Prison Transport Vans

When I was driving home from my tardive dyskinesia neurologist appointment in Gainesville I read an article that made me shudder. It could be me. Prisoners being driving from one facility to another are at the mercy of untrained people who drive the vans and have more of a trucker mentality. It’s about how many people you can get quickly from one place to another. So they jam the vans, deprive the prisoners of bathroom breaks, etc. When a mentally ill person doesn’t get their meds for three or four days they can decompensate and start babbling loudly or drooling, one person died of Xanax withdrawal.

 

I thought…’It could have been me.’ I’ve been privileged to have good care and avoid the hospital for seventeen years but when my former bff called the cops on me and told them I was suicidal, I was in a holding area very similar to a county jail. A long time ago, the eighties, I had legal problems re my drug habit and went to jail five times, so I know what I’m talking about.

 

The problem is the privatization of public prison and jail systems. These people know how to penny pinch but it’s at the expense of those they transport and their human rights.

On the farm in Lexington Kentucky (family visit) w/3 sizes of clothes

horse

Even tho I packed really carefully, when I landed I had slacks that fell off my butt and dresses I could not zip up. We are going to a fancy equestrian party tonight and luckily I had a stretchy maxi dress. I have gotten sloppy w/food, not lifted weights as much as I should and right now, sugar and carbs have ahold of me.  My AIC, which I worked on lowering for four months, has risen w/the 12 lb I gained (all in one place). It’s hard not to feel like my life is out of control right now. Alot of our activities while visiting Dad center around food and drink. And on the subject of ‘out of control,’ I forgot to plan for the weather. I brought too many coats and not enough shorts.

But look at this horse. Do you think he likes me any less for any of that? Of course not. He is a horse, of course, of course.

On the farm in Lexington Kentucky (family visit) w/3 sizes of clothes

horse

Even tho I packed really carefully, when I landed I had slacks that fell off my butt and dresses I could not zip up. We are going to a fancy equestrian party tonight and luckily I had a stretchy maxi dress. I have gotten sloppy w/food, not lifted weights as much as I should and right now, sugar and carbs have ahold of me.  My AIC, which I worked on lowering for four months, has risen w/the 12 lb I gained (all in one place). It’s hard not to feel like my life is out of control right now. Alot of our activities while visiting Dad center around food and drink. And on the subject of ‘out of control,’ I forgot to plan for the weather. I brought too many coats and not enough shorts.

But look at this horse. Do you think he likes me any less for any of that? Of course not. He is a horse, of course, of course.

On the road with 3 sizes of Clothes

gainesvilletwo You would never know this by my tags  but packing for this trip to see my father on his farm was murder. First of all, my weight varies a great deal, largely due to my psych meds, namely clozaril. Other atypicals, like Seroquel and Zyprexa, among others, do this too. Thus, I have three sizes of clothes in my closet, and I had to FACE THE MONSTER when packing, and try them on, all while, trying not to get triggered when stuff didn’t fit. I made lists but I still spaced out and forgot to pack warm weather clothes for a heat wave in Kentucky. So we hat to hit a clothing store for some short sleeved shirts after the airport. Still, nothing  I wear is ever good enough for my father, and I’m never thin enough. This is sort of why, in addition to bipolar, I have an eating disorder too. More from the farm later.

Self Advocacy

tiarawithoutsilver 001Even warrior princesses crash and burn sometimes….

 

Oh, the time it takes! I lost my grant to get through the part D ‘coverage gap’ or also called ‘Donut Hole.’ I have to be on “Straight Medicare” because I see so many specialists and even my primary won’t accept one of the “Medicare Disadvantage Plans.” He says they are necessary (“Straight Medicare) for ‘Survivability’ but then, Dr. Morton can be a tad dark.

But right now, so am I? How am I going to afford my drugs in the spring of next year?

When they talk about Mental Health Reform, they should start with the Donut hole, because if you get someone all fixed up with mood stabilizers or antipsychotics, and then the donut hole hits…they go all the way back to square one. It’s Sisyphean even. Rolling that stone up the hill over and over only to have it roll down again.

There has got to be some rich person out there who would love my tardive dyskinesia book to be published, give me a small grant so I can pursue that. I’m already hunting down sources so I can get metrics. But who is listening to me, anyhow.

Nord, National Organization for Rare Diseases, has blown off four phone calls and four emails.

Why?