PATRICK AND ME IN 1969                              

                                 PATRICK AND ME IN 1969



People tell me I'm a mom on a mission. I am on a mission. We have to make the case for effective, compassionate care for those with serious mental illness (SMI) and to do that we have to tell our stories. Stories about tragedies that could have been prevented. Stories about the need for beds and housing. Stories about outrageous HIPAA laws that prevent us from helping those we love. Stories about our missing and homeless children and mothers and fathers. Stories about our sons and daughters in jails and prisons and solitary confinement without treatment. And on and on...

We have to do this. Nothing else is working. Not healthcare. Not government. Not prisons. Not advocacy organizations. Everything's fraught with hidden agendas, bureaucratic incompetence, and self-interest. Or lack of interest.

I hear many of you in the SMI community say, "So much has happened I could write a book." I believe you could write a book. Why not warm up here? Let's move our stories out of closed Facebook groups and anonymous support groups into mainstream discourse. Let's bombard the public/legislators with accounts they won't be able to ignore. Let's make change happen. Sooner than tomorrow...

Send me your stories. Subscribe to the blog (Click on Your Stories). Spread the word.



Finalist: 2016 San Francisco Writer's Conference Memoir Contest
Finalist: 2016 Writer's Digest Writing Competition
Finalist: 2017 New Millennium Writings 43rd Literary Awards Competition: Nonfiction

I began blogging my book, Sooner Than Tomorrow - A Mother's Diary & A Son's Last Facebook Posts, June 15, 2017. To read the Introduction, click on "My Diary" in the Navigation bar above. To read "A Mother's Diary" from the beginning, click on the June 2017 archives in the right hand column and read "Before: Scenes from the Trenches." Scroll up from "Trenches" to read each Diary entry one by one.

For Patrick and his sisters,
Megan, Marisa, and Kerry.
And for the mothers.

Mothers are the people who love us for no good reason.
And those of us who are mothers know it's the most
exquisite love of all.
 Maggie Gallagher

If you have experience with mental illness, I hope, when reading Sooner Than Tomorrow, you'll say, "It helps to know I'm not the only one." If you have no experience with mental illness, I hope my story, and Pat's story, will personalize mental illness and give it dignity and heart. I didn't know, as I wrote, that I was capturing the last year of Pat's life.

I finished blogging Sooner Than Tomorrow in June 2018.  I'm leaving it on the blog for new readers while I'm researching how to get it published.