It’s been a while since I have posted. I have been calculating, formulating and editing this post in my head for months.
On October 13th 2014 I made another suicide attempt. I was very depressed and just wanted the stress of life to stop. So I swallowed a handful of pills.
My poor girlfriend thought I had low blood sugar and was falling into that place that diabetics go when they don’t manage their disease as they should. She pumped me full of juice trying to raise my blood sugar as I fell deeper into the grasp of the pills I had swallowed. As I was fading in and out of consciousness she realized what I had done and took me to the hospital.
For the next 15 hours I was completely out. I do not remember that time at all. I woke up in a hospital hallway, on a small gurney as they hospitals “behavioral” unit was full. I would stay on the small gurney, in the hallway as new arrivals from a variety of EMTs passed by, for another 15 hours as they tried to find space for me in a treatment facility. It was nearly unbearable as all I had to occupy my time were the thoughts in my head. Thoughts of worthlessness and failure. Thoughts of loneliness and shame. I could not sleep due to the traffic in the hallway. There was nothing else to occupy my time. No TV, no book. Just the constant coming and going of EMT crews. I sat there until 2AM. By then I had seen many of the EMT crews come and go two or three times.
At 2 AM they found a place that had a bed open. I was moved via ambulance and restrained. I cannot handle being restrained and inside I was in turmoil and wanted to do nothing but scream for them to release me. 45 minutes I was restrained on a gurney.
I arrive at the hospital at about 3AM. My clothes were taken and I was issued clothing similar to scrubs. No shoes, just socks with grippy tape on the bottom.
I had not eaten in about 12 hours but the need for sleep overtook my hunger. I was shown my room and promptly went to sleep. About an hour later something awoke me, and as I opened my eyes, I saw an older man hovering over me staring. He then started to go through my clothes. I asked,”Hey, what are you doing?” He responded that he was trying to find his clothes. I said,” Well they aren’t there!”
He was an interesting character, and provided us much amusement as he would go from room to room during the day leaving gifts of shampoo, lotion, or used toilet paper. But he was harmless.
Segue aside, I spent the next 5 days in the mental hospital. It was as comfortable as they could make it. I actually made a few friends and we all laughed together as we watched Harry Potter or played games. We called ourselves the Seroquel Squad as we were all prescribed the drug for mental stability and sleep. We all shared our stories of insomnia and racing thoughts when we were not on the drug. That sleep was a fleeting door to another world that we were too slow to catch.
I went home. . .
The one thing I will say about being in a mental hospital is that a lot of stress drifts away. You have no cell phone. No email. None of those external, electronic instruments that keep you in touch and all too often in stress.
When I returned home that all changed. Thrust right back into reality I had to work with HR for my leave of absence. Make appointments. File for disability. All stuff that in my current state was very hard to do. When I am not in the nest of places I find it extremely difficult to communicate at all. Especially by phone. I am always fretting over what it’s going to bring. So I don’t answer, so I will never know, at least that is my rationale. But I got it done.
But it wasn’t that easy. The disability company delayed my checks (my employed uses a private company rather than California’s EDD, which is odd as I work for government.) We were falling behind on bills as we waited for my disability checks to be processed.
More stress and it kept building. Until I took a long walk, intending to harm myself to make the stress and the pain stop. I blame myself for all that has happened, as had I not taken those pills, none of this would have happened. I lost sight of the irony that I was considering taking my life because I was so distraught over my pass attempt and the problems it brought to me, my GF and my family.
And that’s the thing. When you reach that point nothing is rational. You are stuck, in your head, with delusional thoughts that tell you that this will somehow make things better.
People call suicide selfish and for the people left behind, it does appear that way. But in the person’s head, in my head, there is no other solution to the pain. To the stress. We convince ourselves that our friends, our significant others, our family would all be better off without us.
I have not been working for 3 and 1/2 months now. My psychiatrist keeps extending my leave as she feels I am not ready. Currently I am on leave/disability until Feb 17th. I see the Doc on the 13th to determine if she feels I am ready.
I think I am, although to be honest I am already anxious about going back. I feel as though I let my co-workers down. That they have had to carry my caseload, my burden on top of theirs. I feel shame.
As someone who works with folks with mental health challenges my recent failures make me a hypocrite. And again I feel shame, knowing I am a fraud.
Three and a half months I have been out of work have been very stressful, but some good has come from it. My GF and I have worked through some things that we needed to work through. My family and I have also talked through some lingering problems. Those things give me new hope and that is what will make me ready to go back to work. Well that and the meds.
For the moment, I am stable. I am working on my physical health issues as now my mental issues are in check. I am even considering going to college, to get a degree and teach. Something I have always wanted to do.
If you made it this far, I thank you.
For the TL:DR version, I am cray cray.
A last-minute note. I have, since my first suicide attempt in July of 2011, been torturing myself over the loss of some friendships. I have realized that I cannot move forward carrying that pain and so I am letting it go. I wish you all the best of luck and it is my sincere wish that your lives are filled with happiness.