Medicine and Health

XXIII – Before and After Pinel

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 16/08/2022

  It’s amazing what pretenders madmen and poets can be. Fernando Pessoa was right. While pretending to tell of their pains they pretend to purge them, to adequate themselves, to succumb to mediocrity. And everyone, even they, eventually come to believe in their pretending, a mere artifice of the rhetoric, mere creation. But in pretending their pains don’t just draw off. In the catharsis of telling, although pretended,...

XXII – Resisting Psychiatrical Dominance

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 15/07/2022

There is nothing more to say about the dull monotony of my jail days in this mental health clinic. Not the guitar, not even having met Fernanda, not anything appeases the pain of being… Because the pain is not of being or existing, but from being unable to fully exist, of living like a bird with clipped wings and chains round its feet. Not to mention the barred cage preventing even the slightest attempt of taking flight....

XXI – The necessity to fall in love

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 09/06/2022

I open my eyes and the same scene repeats itself once again: Valerie lying on the bed beside me, I on the floor, the same room, same TV, same doors. The days were always the same, dragging on endlessly inside that prison clinic. I couldn’t stand the monotony anymore, the sameness of it all. Especially since I had been let out before, breathed the airs of freedom for a short time before being locked back up again. I had strol...

XX – A Walking Time Bomb

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 26/05/2022

Here in Pinel, the days are almost always the same, despite the fact of having virtually every possible and impossible lunacy gathered in the same place all at once. Normally I wake up on my mattress on the floor to avoid those terrible back pains. I look up and sitting there beside me is either the melancholic Valéria or the ever caring Sandra, companions of mine who alternate between shifts to safeguard my nightly dreams. W...

XIX – Flashes In Between Rounds of Card Games

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 18/05/2022

  As I tell of my arrival in Pinel, I still find myself being held captive in this sympathetic mental health clinic, amidst Sandras, Valérias, Daniéis, Moniques, Fernandas and many other travel companions. They come and go. I myself have been let out on the outside and have come back, and I have no idea when I’ll ever get out again. The only thing left for me is to write, it is the only way to not let the revolutionar...

XVIII – The Revolutionary Potential of Madness

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 12/05/2022

Pass out,wake up. Turn on, turn off. Remember and forget. To remember is to forget. I’ve been in this dialectic ever since I was first admitted in that mental health clinic, Santa Maria. Drugged on antipsychotics and heavy tranquilizers, it was on this loose tightrope that I would live from there on. This is how I stitched together my memories and my forgotten memories, my feelings and my desires, my conflicts and my tension...

XVII – Bound By My Own Arms

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 16/06/2021

I really don’t know what else to do. I need to get out. I need to see the world. The talks don’t change, they stay the same tone and I remain without perspectives of getting out. Why don’t they give up already, why don’t they just let me go free? Maybe it’s because I’ve already gotten out before. I remember getting out. I remember the sensation of walking through that iron doorway, seeing the trees outside, the car...

XVI – Confident in Victory

Publicado por Bill Braga
Data da publicação: 17/05/2021

As I was saying, I was trying to learn to play the game. The best way of resistance is a peaceful one, as Gandhi taught. Here, inside of Pinel, I just need to get into the game during my meetings with Dr. Lucas. The nurses have already entered my game. With a guitar in hand I have won over my colleagues. I feel like a leader in here. Everyone comes to my room and tells me of their qualms. Maybe I could help them more than the ...