Thursday, September 10, 2009

Notes on Going Inpatient: Part One

At least a month prior to the hospitalization I began to have serious symptoms. At the time I didn't know what the issue was. My back hurt and I thought the area I had surgery on was acting up again. I had sudden stroke like symptoms, flaring flashes of light in my left eye, stomach aches, headaches that laid me out for a whole day. I had tests like you would not believe: MRI's on my back and brain, ultrasound of my heart, even a mammogram. All came back normal and I was eventually diagnosed with migraines. I can't blame the docs, I mean faced with a patient presenting with random symptoms and a flat out refusal to accept "nothing is wrong with you" for an answer they did their best.

Weeks later I still felt like hell and I started to suspect something was seriously wrong. I scheduled myself for a week of vacation to decompress and then proceeded to spend the whole week doing errands, and helping everyone else. Basically I recognized the problem, then ignored it. By the end of the vacation I was at the end of my rope. I was at the beginning of a mixed episode, having suicidal thoughts, and was just a general mess.

On August 24 I called my pdoc. I wanted to hurt myself or to get hurt. I was completely preoccupied with falling down stairs, maybe getting get hit by a car, or getting in some kind of accident, I even hoped to go blind, I just wanted to self destruct like quit my job or just leave town. My mind was completely consumed with these thoughts and I began to seriously entertain the thoughts of suicide that had been popping into my head for months and began to plan out the event. I constantly felt like screaming but just remained silent and looked mildly annoyed. At dinner my husband persuaded me to call my therapist since my pdoc had not called all day. She asked me to promise that I wouldn't hurt myself, I lied. My pdoc called and I mentioned to him that I thought I might need to go to a hospital. After some discussion we decided against it and decided I would see him the next morning, early. He told me what to take to sedate myself, I slept.

August 25 my husband drove my to my pdoc's office. My pdoc was against the hospital so I left with some new prescriptions. By the afternoon I was beyond any illusion that this was going to work. My therapist had checked in a few times and it must have been clear to her as well. She spoke with my husband and got him to collect all my meds. I was PISSED, betrayed, angry, and even more hopeless. How could I escape? I became completely focussed on getting at least enough meds back to cause death.

By 4pm that day I had gotten 4 bottles through various methods of treachery and I had enough to kill myself (Ambien, Lithium, Seroquel, and Clonazepam - all were almost full.) I couldn't concentrate well enough to write a suicide note so now I turned my energy to this. I knew I needed to go over the disposal of my remains (cremation, no services) and the children but I just couldn't organize my thoughts well enough to put it down on paper. I knew that I would take my favorite down comforter and pillow into the tub with me and take the pills there to keep from making a mess if my body let go after death. I wanted to take the meds in the right order to keep from throwing them up and waking up in the hospital needing an organ so I was going to line them up on the bathtub ledge.

At this point my pdoc finally called back and I finally said the words, "I want to kill myself. I am not safe here." We began to discuss where to go. I went with the hospital my therapist had recomended. I packed a bag with 2 days of clothes and light toiletries and headed to the car, crying and fighting with myself the whole time. I wanted to die and to live all at once.

Next up: At the hospital


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