When Quietness Came: A Neuroscientist's Personal Journey With Schizophrenia
by Erin L. Hawkes MSc with an introduction by Dr. Richard O'Reilly, professor of psychiatry, University of Western Ontario.
When Quietness Came is the true story of a young woman studying neuroscience who, in her final undergraduate year, has a psychotic break, attempts suicide and ends up in hospital. Her struggles to get well and to pursue her PhD are described in this book. Her story is geared to people from a variety of backgrounds. As a neuroscientist, Erin reaches out to the medical community who need to hear this side of the patient. As a schizophrenic, she reaches out to others struggling with this disorder, hoping to draw alongside and offer empathy and hope. Finally, she wants the general public, family and friends of people with schizophrenia to be better able to understand and sympathize with those afflicted.
On the other side of the bushes behind Erin is the Psychiatric Assessment Unit (PAU) at the Vancouver General Hospital and its patio. Erin was a patient in that unit numerous times and once attempted an unsuccessful escape from the patio when she and other patients were taken outside for some fresh air. Her attempt led her right into the arms of a security guard who happened to be on a smoke break.
Erin Lynne Hawkes was born in Moncton, New Brunswick in 1979. In 2001, while completing a BSc in Biology at Mount Saint Vincent and Dalhousie Universities in Halifax, Nova Scotia, she underwent her first major psychotic break and spent four and a half months in a psychiatric hospital. Nevertheless, she graduated in 2002 with Honours and was recognized with the Hugh Bell award as “most likely to succeed in science.” After being chosen for an NSERC scholarship (National Science and Research Council), she moved to Vancouver and earned an MSc in Neuroscience at the University of British Columbia (UBC), despite numerous hospitalizations and medication trials. Employed now in a Neuroscience laboratory at UBC, she has contributed to a number of academic papers and has published two personal pieces in Schizophrenia Bulletin's “First Person Account” series. This is her first book
Die Girl Die! My psychosis and its treatment A Presentation at the Clinical Neurosciences Conference UBC 2013
"Both these books are important contributions to a worthy cause, the cause of respecting the humanity of people whose brains sometimes work differently than the majority. For this reason I highly recommend both these books and all the titles from this publisher with a mission and hope that they will be widely read"
Erin on the cover of The Georgia Straight. Her review can be read here