It may be one word, but it immediately conjures up multiple connotations.
Mad. Incurable. Violent. Suicidal. Chemical imbalances. Crazy. A lifelong condition. Inevitable dependency on Medicines. Dark. Terrible.
Schizophrenia, mainstream psychiatry believes, is a chemical imbalance in the head. It believes that it occurs because of genetic vulnerability, which gets triggered because of psycho-social stressors in a person’s immediate environment. That chances of recovery are rare, if not impossible. That it is a disease of the brain. That it can be diagnosed scientifically, and therefore, correctly – each time. That medicines are the only option. That Electric Shocks are an acceptable tool to bring the patient ‘under control’. That the patient needs to be shut away. That the Schizophrenic is ‘mad’ and unable to ever take decisions for herself. And that she need not be consulted, talked to or asked as to what she wants, and feels about her own condition.
Luckily for Reshma, her parents and psychiatrist didn’t follow this pre-written script. Their rebellion against conventional notions of understanding the condition brought Reshma back from her world of imagined reality.
And then, Reshma took charge. Of herself, and her healing. Little by little, she rebuilt her life and took her destiny into her own hands. It wasn’t easy – and she battled society, doctors, psychiatry, mainstream notions about Schizophrenia and even her own parents along the way. But Reshma now leads a fulfilling life, free of medicines.
‘A Drop of Sunshine’ chronicles Reshma’s story and takes a controversial and contrarian view towards recovery from Schizophrenia, proposing that the only treatment method that can work in the condition is one where the so-called ‘patient’ is encouraged and empowered to become an equal partner in the process of healing.