The experience of snapping into psychosis is easy to confuse with an awakening. In my case, that’s how it first started. Going insane was a subtle process of insights. A few years had passed since the Great Recession, which I’m not sure ever ended for anyone except a few rich guys who own Wall Street. Steve Jobs had died a year before, and the picture of him on the cover of his biography grabbing his chin stubble had pierced my soul. I got the feeling there was something wrong with Apple technology. Something sinister in Pixar movies. And the media was totally out of whack, full of native advertising and people telling the same story a thousand different times. It is easy to look at society around you and find that it doesn’t make sense because, duh, it doesn’t. People often root their psychosis in the news and celebrities, and I was no exception. 

I can pinpoint the night when I went over the edge. For months I’d become more isolated, spending most of my time on a laptop looking for clues as to what was wrong with the media and why western civilization was going down the toilet. My poor boyfriend, who had to listen to me rant, was exhausted and went out with a friend for drinks that evening. If you’ve never watched anyone go insane before, it’s difficult to spot the warning signs. You’re stuck with a stranger waiting for the person you love to come back. And things were about to get worse.

Visual hallucinations are very unusual in psychosis, you rather hear voices, but that night I saw a black ninja swat across the apartment a few times. I was uncertain what it was doing there, but I was too busy typing my media analysis using a deductive method of reasoning to care. Warning messages kept flashing for my eyes, like one of those crappy overlays you see in sci-fi movies where all the screens for some reason are see-through: “Stop here. If you go any further, you risk serious damage.” Of course, I kept going because at that point in time I had no idea what serious damage meant. I was already delusional.

Images from movies, advertisements, and real life went into a slideshow on my retina. It was a surreal experience like I was still me but at the same time, I’d become someone else. That’s what I mean by a sense of awakening. There I was, remembering my previous lives, and concluded that my existence was divine. I’d been alive for thousands of years, and in every life, I found my boyfriend again, who was also a divine being. At the moment, we were stuck in the age of propaganda which had made waking up so hard. My mission now was to wake him up by making him remember our previous lives, and then we could write the next chapter in our history. We could control our rebirth so we would find each other again in the next life. 

What had happened wasn’t that I’d discovered immortality, but rather that I had left reality behind. It was the beginning of a psychosis that would last for months before slowly subsiding. You can imagine the nightmare trying to convince someone in this heightened state that all there is, is here and now. Because that’s the conclusion you have to come back to at some point. Many people never do.

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