Today one of the women (K) was waiting for meds at the nurses station. The same nurse who had checked me in on Friday night. Some conversation ensued, I didn’t catch the whole thing – something about how everybody has problems.
K: Yes, my sister-in-law is a psychiatric nurse and she has plenty of her own mental issues.
Nurse: The only difference between you and me honey is that I have the keys and I’m going home tonight.
K just sat in the chair outside the nursing station, crying. I was too busy being hysterical about the staff trying to switch me to another room so that they could put an “emergency” patient in my room. There are 2 beds in “my” room (hereinafter ‘Room 205’). My “check-in” person (G) – assigned to check in with the patient every shift to see how we’re doing and write a report – had taken me down to the other end of the hall and presented me with a gigantic metal hospital bed, from which I quickly backed away, waving it off.
Me: Nononononononono, no hospital beds, trigger.
G: You no can do hospital beds? What’s wrong?
Me: My son, I was in-patient on bed rest at the ob ward in NYC for a month, BLOODBLOODBLOOD, he was born at 26 weeks, weighed a pound and a half, translucent squirrel, surgery at 6 days, they thought he would die for the 1st 2 months, nonononono, too traumatizing, I can’t sleep there, I spent an agonizing month in a bed like that…
G: OK, I tell them, I let you know.
Back in Room 205, K still sits outside the door in her own wreckage, but my roommate, also J, is getting a call from her mother. I sit at my desk with my head in my hands. J’s mother (hereinafter ‘Mother-Bitch’) is harrassing her about a cell phone bill.
J: I paid the cell phone bill a couple of weeks ago. Do you realize that I am in a fucking MENTAL HOSPITAL???? You are calling me about MY cell phone bill while I am HOSPITALIZED? Oh my GOD, I am SO done with this FAMily!
MB: (screaming) You’re the only one who causes problems in this family!
I turned and stared at J. She looked up and shook her head, staring at the phone while her mother continued to shout.
J: Do you know that YOU are the reason WHY I use drugs? You make me want to chug a bottle of FUCKING VODKA. TWO!
MB: (continues to scream) “You don’t know what you do to this family, to your father-“
J: My father? My FATHER? The father that gave me BRAIN DAMAGE when he smashed my skull into the car? No, don’t remember that one, huh? There were witnesses! You fucking idiot!
MB: more screaming, all I can make out is “it’s all about you” and then something about her brother.
J: “Yeah, it’s all me, ok. You just want your PERFECT little family and your PERFECT little son, you know what? You can FUCKING HAVE IT! I DON’T FUCKING WANT IT! You people MAKE ME CRAZY! S has a REAL family. And guess what? I’m a PART of it, you dumb BITCH. So take your fantasies about your PERFECT little family and shove them up your FUCKING ASS!”
She hung up. A girl after my own heart.
J: “You believe this shit? I’m the fucking hospital and she calls to bitch at me about cell phones.”
Me: “Good thing it wasn’t in person.”
J: “She also drained my fucking bank account. Thank God for S’s family. Will they let me leave here in my own car if someone drops it off for me?”
Me: “Yeah, you should be fine.”
And then, just like that, she was gone and the staff was stripping down her bed for that “emergency patient” who a day later had still not emerged.
I was an hysterical mess for the first time since I was admitted, I had completely lost my composure. I ran down the hall and asked to please get a note to my Psychiatrist that I needed my PRN (Ativan) elevated. I took my 1 mg anyway but probably cried and shook for an hour. I think it was just all the concerted stimulation – hysterical patients, staff running around like headless chickens, my roommate screaming, swearing and leaving (abandoned! no, not really). Although, when I met for the 1st time with my treatment team all we did was discuss meds and I was put on 10 mg of Celexa with an increase coming on Saturday to 20 mg. And they said to go to groups – I have been to all these groups before – to ‘learn’ distress tolerance skills. I had spent 6 months meddling with DBT, no use. I felt discouraged and now I was realizing it. I would have to drive home the extent of my distress to them tomorrow.
With all of the commotion yesterday, no new patient had ever shown up, and they now made up J’s empty bed for a new patient and told me I would be switching to a single (YAY!) So here are some shots of my new SINGLE room:
I’m happy to be in a single – I can do my workout routine in the morning without feeling like a jackass. I also have a pet spider. Nonetheless, it was a bad day, with the suicidal thoughts, general discouragement and someone making a snarky remark to something I said in group. I went on Psychologytoday.com’s “find-a-therapist” thingy but wasn’t finding much in the way of trauma. Finally I found a 40clinician practice in Newburyport, it said that they offered “intensive outpatient therapy.” That sounded promising. I played phone tag with the fellow whose profile I liked best & played phone tag with him before calling it a day and taking a nap. I woke up at 6 and needed to take 1.5 mg ativan before having more turkey sandwiches and playing cards with my husband and daughter. They left after and hour. I was exhausted. Again. And still feeling like dying.