NAMI claims that mental illnesses are biological brain diseases. Just recently my mother said that my sister had inherited her mental illness from mom. Mom had also passed along lupus to her two daughters. Which leads me to speculate what I inherited and from whom. But there is the statement promulgated by the women’s movement that biology is not destiny.
1. I inherited my dark complexion.
2. I inherited my height.
3. I inherited my drinking although I did not become an alcoholic.
4. I probably inherited some of my intelligence.
5. I inherited my eyesight (all of us wear glasses.)
6. I inherited my looks.
The question is, what did I do with them and how did they become me?
1. I probably inherited my hair from my father.
2. He might have been a drinker, according to mom.
Oops, I slipped back into the inheritance mode.
I believe that the time that I grew up and the things I saw my mother do going out to work often in hospital settings had a profound influence. I was not fated to be hospitalized but to be a helper for others.
My intelligence seems to be related to problem solving. When I was at my worst I could not sit down and think how I got into a problem and how I would be able to escape. The solutions that developed surprised me. I certainly had no idea about being a peer support specialist. The only mental health workers I knew about were social workers years ago.
My general health probably came from my mother, since I have lived far longer than my father.
But what did I do with those years? I don’t know where my writing originated. As a child, I wrote poetry, using pen and paper. Later I graduated to typewriters. But who would have thought I would be sharing my ideas over something called the Internet?
The scientists are hard at work trying to find the genes linked to various diseases, including mental illness. But I would not want to change even if I found out about the strange factors affecting my personality. I am better talking with people in the community than I was behind a library desk.
I am assured that every day will be different and the people I assist will respond in new ways. My co-workers will display new quirks. I will look at people’s strengths differently. The next 30 years and the last many years are all on me. Let’s see how good a poker player I can be. It’s not all in the genes.
- Educate, Empower, & Recover…. OH MY! (brittanymoso.wordpress.com)