Most of you know that I stay out of warm climates whenever possible. Therefore it seems utterly insane that I left Boston today, in the middle of a snowstorm (Ursula was her name) to fly to Dallas. Intentionally. Where it was 80 degrees.
I’ve been thinking for a very, very long time about writing this post. Years, actually. Part of it has been the courage of Jenny Lawson, The Bloggess, that’s allowed me to even think about doing it, part of it has been the necessity of living a life that is so controlled by this somewhat hidden part of myself, and part of it is that I feel more and more like I’m lying by not being open.
Truthfully, there’s still a huge stigma. I have lost at least one job because of it. I have family who flatly refused to believe me when I told them. Interestingly, it was an email I received from a friend at Harvard yesterday that made me realize that not only did I want to spread the word about the contents of her email, it was the perfect venue through which I could finally open up and come out of the mental illness closet.
My name is Kelly Hopkins and I am mentally ill. I have Major Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and PTSD.
Many of the readers around here know that Geoff and I both have neurologists at Boston Medical Center. You may also remember me singing in the Boston Medical Center Concert When Patients Heal You last November. (Video is here, sorry for the sound quality) I’ll be singing in the concert again this October. Watch this space for more details.
Anyway, the BMC is loaded with great talent and with people who give their time and talent to not only give back to the community here in Boston but also but to raise money for others who need it, as well as to fund health care for those who would not otherwise have access to it. I’m not performing in the concert listed below, the pianist/nurse/saint I’m performing with in October is. Check it out.
And it is just fantastic. And funny.
As many of you already know, I am a lover of history. Maritime history is especially one of my favorite sub-fields of history, and I love to see historic ships or reproductions of historic ships at any opportunity. I am lucky enough to live in a state (and a region) that has many.
So I went to the old Navy Yard in Charlestown on Saturday, since my back was feeling a bit better and I was feeling up to doing some walking around. And I am so very glad I did, because for the first time ever I got to take a tour of the inside of the USS Cassin Young, one of the museum ships kept there by the National Park Service.