I am for relationships in my future.

I want to be able to form and keep friendships I was able to form over the years with friends I have at NAMI Mercer NJ who also struggle with their difficult mental illness. I have been working since January 2016. I am back to work this September 2019. I will be working this semester. I also plan to retest for the Praxis Core Reading test next January 2020. Early in January I plan to retest and take the core reading test for the second time. I may try a third time to see if I pass. I may be able to pass this second time. I’m studying the Barron’s Praxis Core Exams and I will be studying it for the rest of this year. Early January 2020 is retest.

I discovered Alicia Keys in a music therapy group when I was at St. Francis Medical Center on the Psychiatric unit in Trenton, New Jersey back in the 2000s.

I really like Alicia Keys. I am around her age. I’m 38. I love singer/songwriters. I feel like they are cool for singing and especially if they are like Alicia and have fifteen Grammy awards and write their own songs. I like her music. I love how she plays the piano. She is so cool and she seems to be down to earth. I like how in one of her music videos she has on a nice outfit playing the piano. She has a Yamaha piano too. To be a pianist is something very cool and to write your own songs. I just like and admire Alicia Keys so much.

I had a health scare.

I was hospitalized for blood clots in my lungs and I was having anxiety too. I have been up since 7 am. I am going to be working on my writing. I am taking a course with The Institute of Children’s Literature. I am half way through my course. I need to work on my assignments and make them better. I will be in the library from 10 am to noon. Then I’m just going to chill until 12:30 pm a friend is picking me up and we’re going bowling and getting pizza.

I am so happy I am working at my alma mater as a Mentor.

I am happy to be able to help my Mentees. Some of them are African American and I work at Mercer. I try to be helpful to all of my Mentees. Some of them are Caucasian and others are Hispanic. They are all very nice and I have been able to connect with almost all of them. Sometimes when I meet a new Mentee at the beginning of the semester I introduce myself to them to familiarize myself with their names as well.

I managed to be resilient in life despite difficult circumstances of my childhood.

I always got bullied in school as a child. I always liked school though. I also managed to feel good about myself despite the things other people did to me or just unfair things people did to me like bully me. By the time I was starting high school my freshman year I started to hear distant voices and all it took was an encounter with racism in my sophomore year in high school to cause my early onset of mental illness. I thank God I have NAMI the organization I volunteer with and I’m also a consumer of. I try to stay out of trouble. I have plans to finish up my course in writing for children at The Institute of Children’s Literature later this new year 2020. I have been through some tough times but I always put a smile on my face because I managed to be resilient and feel good about myself despite what people say about me. I just know deep down on the inside that God is in this fight with me. Giving up is not an option. I will keep fighting this battle with my mental illness. My life is pretty good despite my illness. I am excited about writing for children in the near future. I hope to have children’s books credited to my name and I also hope to publish a memoir. I disagree if anyone says because of the traumatic circumstances in my childhood it gives me a pass or a reason to be angry about the past. There were still very nice aspects of my childhood too. I understand now that I need to appreciate what I had and now that I’m older appreciate what I have.

I try to remain positive in a chaotic world.

When I think of how much progress I have made even positive experiences I have had in the past I’m sure that God is there in the details of my life. I know God was always the unseen hand in my life that I was not always sure of myself because honestly I had my share of doubts but in the past eight or nine years I can say I am sure of the existence of God. I had a peace wash over me eight years ago one day when I was anxious not knowing what I was going to do on that day. For the first time in my life I was sure that God was right there with me. I felt overcome with sadness that day and God was there to remind me that although I may have felt alone or like I was all by myself I wasn’t. The condition of schizophrenia is a difficult condition to have. I would hear very critical mean voices. I’d feel really sad sometimes and lonely. I got to a partial care program that I’ve been going to for a few months. I got certificates for perfect attendance October 2019 and November 2019 and also December 2019. I am looking forward to my 39th birthday on January 28, 2020 and just appreciating my life and the people God placed in my life too. I feel less alone.

I have gotten help from attending a partial care program called AAMH.

I had so many deaths in my family over the past couple of years. I feel like now that I decided to become a teacher more people are saying things about me and I don’t feel I’m any less competent than anyone else. I make my own decisions in life. First I think of myself and just being less hard on myself but my therapist told me I’m very smart and I am. Life is what you make it. You only get your one life to live. I’m going to keep fighting this difficult battle with schizophrenia. I know people don’t determine my self worth God does. When I get anxious or sad or someone says something negative about me and I wonder what causes people to always talk shit about me I have learned as someone that has mental problems since I was in high school not to be hard on myself. The first thing I’ll do is get my basic driver examination permit.

I feel like I’ve been here before.

Sometimes when I was a child I had kids tease me really badly because of the color of my skin. I was a pretty little black girl too but in the African American community color is different and if someone didn’t know that they would soon find out. I had two very kind people in my life my uncle Colin who has his MFA in Film works for Spike Lee and my wonderful mother who is so caring, kind and nice but I was really sensitive too and I got bullied. Life was just different for me. I was a chocolate girl and when someone describes their experiences in life and tells you honestly what their life experiences were like you would learn things you would not otherwise know. I learned to accept myself but I had some unfair things happen to me and I know I’m not alone but all of the people I interact with or say they like me I feel good because I was victimized by people who just didn’t like me. I was always the last girl picked. I felt happy to be empowered by some of my female professors. I also think about women in history and people I admire like poet Emily Dickinson or Justice Bader Ginsburg.

I see myself as a competent person. I know sometimes even the way I see myself may be different from the way others see me.

I am a kind person. I like when other people say I’m nice or easy going but I try to be kind to people on purpose. Sometimes even people that I know may have the same struggles that I have may even say “oh Ayesha has the same mental illness I have” even if our diagnosis may differ  but for years it was really hard for before I had the support of NAMI. I can tell you from experience mental illness is really hard. Being able to do so much more with the advances in modern medicine one day sounds nice to me. When I think of medicine and research for mental illness I know I think of wholistic alternatives rather than a psychiatrist but maybe we need both. I know the Bible verse that says “laughter make the heart merry like a medicine.” The more I laugh and enjoy myself the less stressed out I feel. A few jokes a friend and I have the happier we each are in that moment. The successes of my blog are happy successes. I always dreamed of becoming a writer I even wanted to have a chance to put MFA after my name but that didn’t work out. I admire poet Natasha Trethewey but I know she was one of the first females I saw that had that so many successes as a poet and the south is different from the north but there is still racism here I just find more people are very nice and approachable here in New Jersey where I live. I know even in Brooklyn everybody pretty much rides the bus or the train and once when I was a child in school in Brooklyn a bus driver put me off the bus for being ten cents short. I try to be careful but thank God from the train my bus ride is less than 15 minutes and as long as I say getting off at NJCU I’m okay. Things sometimes happen and the bus fare even went up five cents last year. I need to have the fare or I’m in trouble.

I find myself being sure that nothing is really wrong with me.

I became so much more comfortable in my own skin and even with the way I look too. I know God is there in the details of my story. I was this bullied little hurt black girl who was born in Brooklyn, New York to a mother that recently graduated from college who was studying to become a nurse. My biological father died when I was about two years old. My mom was this skinny black lady from the Caribbean who wanted the best for her daughter and was always skinny until she had me. I know I can think of things I struggled with from my weight to stress even insomnia but this difficult illness didn’t steal everything from me. I was able to have insight into my illness and that made a difference. I know if I thought of losses I had of like my grandfather and my father even my uncle Johnny my grandmother’s brother died when I was 12 years old. I miss my great aunt Elaine too she died at the age of 86. I really felt closest to my great aunt Elaine but my mother’s family is full of drama and so I never talk about them. I miss my great aunt Sybil too she was 89 years old when she passed and she had a photo on her program at her funeral procession she had on these beautiful eyeglasses that her side of the family my mom’s cousins had chosen a nice photo for her funeral.

I know God is right here with me.

I know wherever I am God is with me. I have even been able to commute back and forth to NJCU the college I attend. I graduated in August of 2015. For years I had a hard time sleeping until I had a spiritual experience that made me sure that there is a God despite what atheists say. I never want to let myself get bogged down with a lot of negative thoughts. I know just me sharing my experience of what my life is like and me having a cool experience being nominated four times in the past two years. I had someone ask me in French one time if I spoke French. It made me feel exotic. I also like French but there are some people that say they don’t like French people. It was just so cool that Miss Michelle blogging all the way in Paris, France said : “hey girl guess what I nominated you?” I have had some unique experiences in my life but I count my blessings. I know things are sometimes hard even for the more popular people that makes it harder to even really know if they die young and seem to have way easier lives that the average person. I know having the experience of being nominated makes me feel grateful to the people who nominated me and it just made me feel cool to say I was one of the bloggers to be nominated. I appreciate both Mister Stuart and Miss Michelle for the nominations they gave to me.