Perhaps we all go through periods of time when we are asked to redefine ourselves. As the summer is underway, I find myself challenged to find new ways to commit to my work supporting people who experience psychosis.
If you are receiving this email or post, you are likely familiar with my blogs and efforts to use my experience to help change the way psychosis is approached. A large part of my writing platform depends upon having meaningful work that enables me to share experiences with others and that financially supports me in doing so.
Early this summer, the company I work for announced that programs will be getting cut and closed to address a huge budget shortfall. More information was released and we learned that there is a proposal to merge the urban Highland Program where I work with the suburban Fairmont Program.
This could function to devastate a community that has supported me. It is Highland that allowed me to create my special message group which gave me the opportunity to learn how to redefine psychosis.
The potential loss of this community breaks my heart. I worry for the clients who don’t want to acculturate to the new community. What will they do to stay busy and get support? But I have to confess that sometimes I fear that without this supportive community, it is I who will not be able to thrive and create content that matters. Giving to others and seeing them happy clearly feeds me and keeps me going.
I do believe that I will be okay, but this change ushers in fundamental changes towards who I am and how I have been able to survive. I have already started straining to find an alternative course of income in the event the merge or in the event that my position gets eliminated. Talk from the company has been tough and has made me question the stability of my union entitlement and right to “bump” a less experienced worker.
I have kept my writing practice up to the best of my ability and have some irons in the fire in terms of new blog posts to publish. Still, my confidence as a writer is shaken my need to create a new identity. Relationships with new colleagues will be very different if I am selected to continue my service in Alameda Health System. The issue has caused me to evaluate my values and professional options. How do I make a living without selling out my values and passion for understanding and working through psychosis?
If I go to private practice, how do I fill that practice with people who can benefit from my expertise? How do I get on insurance panels? What if private practice causes me to stray away from my passions? Can I be as open and forthright if I work with people who don’t relate to psychosis? Do I need to hide my identity on my blog and as a writer? These are dilemmas that currently interfere with publishing the posts I am working on
Are there some ways that this change might help me grow for the better?