Last week I told you about the worst experience of my 36 years on this Earth. That was only half of the night. There's more.
I'm not sure I can even say which half was worse because each tops my list for different reasons. They were both horrible. The first half of the night (my violent, yet inadvertent actions) was the worst because of what I subjected Sarah to. It was the ugliest version of me. She saw it and I knew she saw it. I can't come back from that.
The second half was also the worst because of the unknown potential and loneliness of my actions. I know I've said this before, but Sarah had to help me remember this ER visit just as she did the first. I remember the latter parts as the drugs started wearing off.
After being turned away by Holly Hill, a psychiatric hospital, we returned to the same ER I was at a couple weeks prior. We pulled up to the doors and Sarah asked the hospital personnel to help her. I was refusing to get out of the car and didn’t want anyone touching me. I was extremely combative at this point. There was a police officer and approximately eight hospital personnel that ended up being called to the scene.
“Just shoot me, just shoot me. Take your fucking gun and shoot me in the head and this will all be over.”
Those are not words that I ever imagined would come out of my mouth. In my other years of battling depression and anxiety, not once did I request that someone shoot me.
I was in and out, but recall snippets of my combativeness. I know it was scary for Sarah and others including the police officer who had the gun. Sarah said he was crying as he watched me desperately calling out for help. That’s what it was; desperation.
As I replay this in my head, I feel out of sorts knowing those words came from my mouth. But it is possible for that to happen to anyone who suffers. I am so grateful that my wife had the courage, and the physical and mental strength, to get me to the right place at the right time. There are no words that could ever express how much she means to me and how she has helped me through the worst of times. I need you, I need everyone, to know that.
I was later told that 8 grown men, hospital personnel, had to restrain me and hold me down on a gurney in order for them to administer meds to subdue me. This is not a joke. I am 5'3" tall and I weigh 125 lbs. Now you can imagine the level of my combativeness.
After reviewing my medical records, I was admitted to the hospital around 6pm. At least this is when all the test results were completed. My last vitals were taken around 6am the next day. I was administered 5 mg of Haldol (haloperidol) which is an anti-psychotic drug that decreases excitement in the brain. I was then given 50 mg of ketamine in my left anterior thigh. Ketamine is an anesthetic medication. Ketamine is used to put you to sleep for surgery and to prevent pain and discomfort during certain medical tests or procedures.
When I started coming to, it was the strangest, loneliest feeling I’ve ever experienced. I was still very out of it. At one point throughout the night, I remember having to pee. The nurses had to move me to a toilet. I couldn’t even resist if I wanted to. I had to pee and there was nothing I could do but pee. Throughout the night I was transferred to and from the bedside toilet. They took care of me so that I wouldn't piss myself. I feel embarrassed right now, but it's OK. As I've said before, it's a part of my story. It's true and it's real. That's what matters.
After a while I was able to fully open my eyes. I could barely lift my arms and felt glued to the bed. I immediately began looking for Sarah. I kept looking around the room to make sure that what I was seeing was not a dream. It felt so real, but so unreal at the same time. No matter how hard I tried to see her, Sarah wasn't there. It was in that moment when I realized I never wanted to feel like that again. My call for help was answered.
Sarah didn't choose to leave. She wanted to stay and would've stayed as long as she needed to. The nurse told her to go home and that there was no need to stare at me while I was drugged out and recovering. We had dogs to take care of. She had to take care of herself. I was in good hands. I understand this.
When I was finally able to form a sentence, I met a nurse. He was super cheery and such a wonderful nurse. He joked with me and said I was apparently stronger than eight grown men. We both laughed, though I knew that meant I was the talk of the ER as some super drunk lady beating up hospital personnel. Yikes. Not necessarily what I want to be remembered for.
When I was finally able to stand and walk on my own I made it to the bathroom. I examined myself. I felt so sore. I had bruises on my wrists and upper arms from the personnel needing to hold me down. I don’t remember acquiring them, but I understood why I had them.
I was so happy when Sarah arrived to take me home. For a few days after that things were a blur. I couldn’t tell you what I was feeling or doing. I do know that Sarah and her parents were there to support and comfort me.
If I had gotten a gun in my hands during this night, it could've turned out very differently. There was no chance of me grabbing the gun from the police officer in the emergency room. We did however have one in our bedroom closet. The laundry basket I fell on was approximately three feet from our gun. I later learned that Sarah had locked me in another room that night, so that she could go back into our closet and disassemble the gun.
I dislike guns. All kinds. I've never actually shot a gun. I have no desire to. They are scary. To me, guns mean harm. I hate the thought of doing harm to anyone or any thing. Here again, is another example of what the struggle with mental illness can do to someone. No one wants to suffer.
With all my might, and the fight I have within, I always want to live. I've always wanted to live.
I can't wait until next week when I tell you about my audition for Orange is the New Black.
I just want all people to learn and grow together.