Photo taken by contributor Cheerios, a man who was diagnosed with Bipolar and Paranoid Schizophrenia at the age of 41. Cheerios works and does his best to function at a level that he considers to be normal.
About this photo: “I took this picture several years back. At the time it signified hope for me; hope that God was going to give me a brighter future. I was at a very stressful time in my life, that I feel triggered my mental illness acute episode.
As the years went on and I became mentally ill I realized what Psalms 23:4 talks about when it states the following,
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
That darkest valley was the deepest darkest delusional dimension of the mind where one loses their self as a rational human being and has a total loss of reality. Yet in the darkness, despair, and confusion, at a level deeper than my mind and embedded into my soul was my only light, a light of love; the warmth of God who kept me safe when I was exposed to the mentally ill hell of the mind.
Realizing that God was always there with me no matter how lost I was, was the hope that I was looking for, for all those years.”