Should be Mandatory for Medical and Nursing Students
The author writes from his personal experiences in a style that clearly helps the reader understand the vast challenges of dealing with Schizoaffective disorder. Fascinating that he was aware of mental processing issues very early in life, but compensated quite well until early adulthood. His willingness to share the details of numerous spirals and the difficult battles to regain clarity explain the disorder better than any textbook I have seen in 40 years of nursing practice.
Re-writes the book on what we all thought we knew about schizophrenic disorders
This book is a genuine account of Schizoaffective Disorder by a young man who as has come through the worst of it and has the strength and courage to face it daily and challenge its power over him. Its authenticity truly touched me.
We see Schizophrenia portrayed on television and the movies or read its description in books and think we have some idea of what it is, but until I read this book I realize I didn’t have a clue. The book takes you through the author’s younger years, long before there would ever be a break or clinical diagnosis, and helps you to see that it doesn’t happen all at once, and it doesn’t happen because of a single event, and it doesn’t happen to just “certain types of people” – all things that pop culture may have you believe in order to expedite a story line or promote the common beliefs. It’s something the individual deals with in many ways throughout their life, and it’s something that would likely break many of us if we were faced with it on a daily basis the way the author was. After all, I don’t think there is a single person that can say they’ve never suffered from low self-esteem, paranoia, obsessive thoughts or actions at some time in their lives.
Now imagine if your brain trapped you in those thoughts and times and wouldn’t release you. That is what I imagined when I read this book, and it really, truly opened my eyes. I sincerely hope this book gets the recognition it deserves for what it is and what it does. Its not a clinical read, or highly polished and edited production – it’s a true, honest, and thought provoking account from someone who can take you through his own first hand account. Schizoaffective Disorder is not something I think anyone ever expects to experience in their personal life; and I imagine that most, like me, wouldn’t recognize it in its early stages.
I hope this book can make it into the hands of those children who may feel just as Steve did and those parents who know the loving child they’ve raised is struggling in ways they can’t understand but could possibly recognize through the author’s account. The author talks throughout the book about his desire to help others and provide meaning for himself and others, and through his courage and selflessness in sharing his memoirs – I feel he has undeniably achieved that.
Yet there was good there.
On the first page of Dante’s Inferno, as the poet begins the story of his descent into hell, he says something surprising:
Even to remember it makes me afraid.
So bitter it is, death itself is hardly more so;
Yet there was good there…
Yet there was good there! What extraordinary character a person must have to recognize the good in a place as bitter as death!
Reading Steve Colori’s account of Experiencing and Overcoming Schizoaffective Disorder is time spent in the company of a man of similar character. Colori’s courageous, honest self-appraisal is intended as a gift to the reader who may be going through his own struggle with mental illness. Ultimately, though, the lesson the author brings back from his journey through hell is one that would benefit every reader to learn: “I find happiness to be an extraordinary achievement.”