I went to bed knowing that when I woke up the next morning, the realization that I was in a Psych hospital for Mother's day would be almost too much to handle. Major Depression and PTSD had taken over my life - caused by abuse inflicted on me. I wouldn't see my boys today. How would I really explain it or make it up to them? What are they thinking right now? I've always taken pride in trying to be the best mother I could be. Has this hospitalization zapped everything that I strived to be for them? Has everything that I have ever taught them been discredited? That's where my brain was...and it was Sunday - I was supposed to be getting ready to go to church, to sing, worship, and hear a message from the Lord.
I was woken up at 6am again with the same routine as yesterday - Large room, coffee, breakfast, vitals, outside smoke time and meds. There wasn't a whole lot planned on the schedule today due to it being Sunday. I tried to read my bible but felt guilt (I tried to read it anyway) and I had begun to talk to other patients and take part in their conversations and hear tidbits of their stories. It's a sad world that we live in. So many people hurting, so many people looking for a "fix" or a way to feel numb because reality was too hard right now. There were so many people struggling from past hurts. Some knew Jesus, and some were very far from knowing Him. One thing I did realize were the similarities that we all had. Life had been hard - curve balls were thrown, life got too tough - and people learn to cope anyway they know how. The other similarity was that we were all God's children and he loved each and every one of us the same. Some were here for alcohol abuse. Some were here for anger management that got them in trouble with the law. Many were here detoxing from drugs, and I met a few with depression and PTSD like me. Some came here independently and some were mandated by the courts to come here. Others were PEC'd like me. Some were chronically homeless, some were thrown out of their homes due to their issues, some lost their homes from drugs/no work, and some were mentally unstable to live alone. Some were gang members, some turned to prostitution to support their drug habit and some were disabled and had addictions to prescription drugs. Some attended private schools, some were dropouts. Some were illiterate and some had degrees. Some had visitors, some never had any. Some were disowned by their loved ones and some had so many visitors that it took the whole visiting hour to visit with them all. Mental health issues are not limited to any certain classification of people.
They served cookies with lunch today! This doesn't sound all that amazing but it was. The food was actually ok but it was always a focused meal, no extras. We got cookies for Mother's day and I was thankful. Today was full of sadness. I had a breakdown in the hall bathroom but because of my warped sense of self, I saw it as a weakness and regrouped quickly. Staying in control and appearing to be ok had been my coping mechanism for 30 plus years. Learning to cope differently would be a process that I would have to learn. I just couldn't believe I couldn't see my boys today. I also couldn't believe what my life had come to. I had feelings of unworthiness and deep sadness. Darra was coming at 3:00 and I was ready to see him. We all had to report to our rooms at 2:30pm in preparation for visitors at 3pm. If you had a visitor, they would come and notify you. Children were not allowed to visit at any time.
Darra arrived right at 3:00 so we could take advantage of our full visiting hour. My mom and sister came to visit as well. My sister, God bless her, had a few broken ribs from her wreck but managed to travel carefully to visit with me. I wished my mom a Happy Mother's day but felt guilty and heartbroken that we were spending it in here. I mean, how "Happy" could it be this year. Again, it was really a low time. Darra raised my spirits by giving me a picture of our boys standing by my Mother's day present at home. It was a picture printed on a piece of paper so I could keep it with me, just like my brother's picture. Just seeing my boys on the printed picture raised my spirits a bit. Our visit went ok - a bit awkward, being unsure of the next step, sadness, unanswered questions, and the uncertainty of how long I would be in here. 72 hours were required of me but not limited to additional days. This would be determined by the Medical team overseen by the Psychiatrist. For the rest of the evening, I showed the picture of my boys to any and all who had the least bit interest in looking at it.
I knew I needed to be here. I was not safe alone right now. Anger within me was brewing. I believe that my actions got me here but it was the actions of others that caused me to get to this point. I've kept big secrets my whole life and felt that by keeping them, I was protecting people, along with innocent people, from devastating news. It was very complicated then and its still very complicated today. By protecting them, I was dying inside.
This facility was a stepping stone to further treatment. It was a short term place to detox you, keep you safe, give you the essentials, be followed by a medical team and attempt to regulate your medications. Many patients who were here didn't have a place to call home. There hopes from here were a 30 day treatment facility or a half-way house to help them get back on their feet. I wasn't sure what the plan was for me. Not many patients knew I was a nurse but those who knew were surprised of my admittance. The world is good at stereotyping. No one is exempt from past hurts, depression, painful memories, and PTSD. As a matter of fact, the beautiful nurses that I work with for so many years have pain and hard ache, challenging lives and stressful stories that they deal with daily. I say this as a reminder - You never really know who may be going through a hard time - Be kind - Always! This world is broken and no one is exempt from heartache and pain.
The day ended with a music therapy session where we got to request songs that moved us. I love music and consider it a type of ministry to me. Myself, and a patient detoxing from Meth, requested the same song. It was a christian song and we both cried listening to it. Thats how Mother's day ended.
Tomorrow was Monday.
Day 4 of my hospitalization.