When our son was ill, both my husband and I thought that our love would turn this thing around, but love was not the answwer; neither were my tears, but I was as powerless to stop them as I was able to stop the waves breaking on the shore. At seven o’clock every morning, my husband left for work and on his return, he spent as much time as he possibly could with our son, while I searched and researched the cause of paranoid schizophrenia.
Had we been responsible? Had we done something terrible? Had I contracted some illness or other during my pregnancy and forgotten about it? I read everything I could get my hands on but all that effort shed little light on our predicament.
The sun set and the light faded while I sat on our patio and merged with the darkness. Winter was around the corner and the smell of woodsmoke was in the air, reminding me of happier times. I felt a passionate desire to cling to the last days of the fall, afraid of what might be waiting ahead, ready to pounce.
Then, I went indoors and turned on Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. My son’s lonely figure was always hovering nearby and prevented me from enjoying anything. My husband joined me. “I used to be so happy,” I whispered, “but now I’m afraid to have any fun as that would take me out of myself and re-entry into the real world would be far too difficult to contemplate. Do you know that only this morning, an acquaintance crossed the street when she saw me approaching? Her child had played in our house, spent hours with our David doing all kinds of things together. It was so hurtful, you know! I did nothing to her, nothing at all. The only thing that has changed is that our son was diagnosed with schizophrenia. Is that a reason to ignore me when I need more support, more affection and more love than ever before?”