I am a NAMIWalks hero! I am walking with NAMI because the work they do is very important to me. NAMI (the National Alliance on Mental Illness) is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans impacted by mental illness.
WHY? I am a walk star and a team lead because I am fighting for my son to have the same care for his mental health condition that I get for Parknson's disease, considered a physical condition. Both of us have problems due to a chemical called dopamine. He has too much and I have too little. Because his condition is called a mental illness, and mine is called a physical illness, it is a lot harder to get him proper care. The last time he needed care, he had to sit on a bed in the hallway in the emergency room for 3 days waiting for a place to open up in the local mental health facility. There was no privacy whatsoever.
I recently spent the better part of 3 days learning how to teach the Family to Family class for NAMI. Here is my WHY for that. "Knowledge is the way out...every bit of understanding learned and shared feeds the ability to realize that my son's life is governed by the chemistry in his body... that is it...just chemistry... A few molecules of this and that. Chemistry is nothing to be ashamed of and can be modified by medication and by taking good care of ourselves. Are people with diabetes ashamed because they have a chemistry problem? Because of the stigma still associated with mental illness, many people do not see the beauty, the intelligence, the creativity and the love contained in people dealing with metal health conditions. They deserve the same kind of treatment that other people with "physical" conditions get, like me. As caregivers, we owe attention and truth... always the truth... support, relentless support... understanding and compassion to overshadow the stigma that exists still today in late 2018.
2019 is a new year. Please join my walk team and bring attention, truth, support, understanding and compassion to the fight to get the care that is needed by my son and others that are courageously dealing with mental health comditions.
If you don't want to walk, just donate some money.
Did you know that :
NAMI provides support, education, and advocacy to hundreds of thousands of families, individuals, educators, mental health service providers, and law enforcement professionals each year. NAMIWalks helps us continue to provide these programs at no cost to the community.
Donating to NAMI through my page is easy, fast and secure. Your donation will make a difference and help people and families affected by mental illness right here in our region.