On March 29th, 1995 I walked. I walked for eight miles. Voices that only I heard were telling me to go. A voice told me that the world would be better off without me. I tried to walk away. I stopped on Mt. Davidson. The voices did not. Another said I would feel better if I were dead. I walked again, stopping next in Golden Gate Park. The voices did not rest. I was told to move faster, people were coming after me. I walked out of the park, through the Presidio, onto the Golden Gate Bridge. I climbed over the railing and looked down at the cool, green, water far below.

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“Jump!” shouted a chorus.

I did not. I climbed back over the railing. The bridge patrol arrived a few minutes later. On this day I was admitted to a hospital for the first time. My journey started on a warm spring day in San Francisco. Years later, over twenty different medications later, I have some stability.

I walk with NAMI so that others may find help without the terror I felt. I walk so that others don’t have to fight as many fights. I walk to make this country a better place for those of us with a mental illness. ~Curtis