This post is a continuation of my previous post, where I give my account of my suicide attempt and when the police were called as a result. This is what happened over the next 12 hours.
I don’t remember much about the drive, other than the fact that you feel every turn and every bump much more significantly when your hands are restrained behind your back. People tell you how uncomfortable handcuffs are and they’re not lying. But it’s one of those things that you never truly understand until you are forced to wear them.
I didn’t realize that in situations like this, they take you around to a back door near the psychiatric wing. They try to keep your visibility at a minimum, which I appreciated.
When I got inside, I had to sit on a chair by the nurse’s station and had to answer all of the basic questions, like my name and birthdate and if I had any allergies. For a moment, it felt like just any other visit to a doctor or hospital, despite the fact that it was so vastly different.
Once I was checked in, one of the officers removed the handcuffs and told me to take care of myself. The nurse took me to my room and laid out a gown. Instead of leaving the room while I undressed, she stayed. She had to inspect my body and put my clothes in a bag in the cabinet. I can’t remember if I was even allowed to keep my underwear on, but I know that my oh-so-important bra had to go. Too many ways that I could have injured myself with it. She asked if I wanted hospital socks, and if I promised not to try to strangle myself with them. I gave her a look that said “Are you fucking kidding me?” and she said “You’d be surprised. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” I guess I was naive in the suicide department. I said yes, I would like socks. I was cold, after all. I’m always cold.
The nurse took my vitals, and asked a bunch of other questions, like what medications I was currently taking. They made sure that they confirmed what I had swallowed and then proceeded to get me my other already prescribed medications. I guess it was obvious that I needed them. They also gave me something to relax. Again, so much of this was a blur, so I don’t know what exactly it was.
The room that I was in had a glass wall on the side where the nurse’s station was. There was an officer assigned to sit outside of my room, I’m assuming to make sure that I didn’t try to hurt myself or make a run for it. I didn’t intend to do either. I just wanted to lay in the bed and cry. I got my wish, at least for a while. The nurse checked on me periodically, but for the most part, I was left alone.
I tried to sleep a little, because it was past midnight at that point. I was emotionally exhausted, but sleep was still a struggle, even with the sedative that they gave me. I’d nod off for a few, only to wake up in confusion about where I was. I kept asking myself “How did this happen? What sort of person does this?” Until that night, this experience seemed so foreign. So far off from the plane of reality that I never imagined that it would happen to me. And yet it did. Apparently I was the sort of person that does something like this.
The only thought I remember fixating on was the fact that it was Friday night and Easter was on Sunday. I hadn’t done my shopping yet for the kids. Who was going to take care of Easter? Who was going to be the Easter Bunny? I know the kids had a fully capable father, but I was used to taking the lead with holidays and I was terrified that my kids would again pay the price for having a crazy mother.
The nurse wheeled in a large computer monitor on a cart and said that there was a psychiatrist who was going to video chat with me and ask me a bunch of questions. I don’t remember the specific questions aside from “Are you actively suicidal now? Are you making plans to kill yourself?” You would think that based on my current situation, I would be more suicidal than ever. You would be wrong. All I wanted at that point was to be back at home with my family. Snuggling in bed with my kids like this nightmare never happened. I told the psychiatrist no, that I was no longer actively suicidal and that I wasn’t making plans to kill myself.
I have never felt so alone in my life. I had no idea what my family knew about where I was and what was going on. I was also angry. With myself. With Daniel for calling the police and causing this whole ordeal. But then I remembered that it wasn’t him, but me who caused it.
Morning rolled around and the nurse told me that it was determined that I was no longer a danger to myself or anyone else, so I was being discharged. My head was spinning. How was I going to get home? Who should I call? But it was brought to my attention that somehow, Daniel had found out where I was and was asleep in the waiting room.
I was given my bag of clothes and shoes and was allowed to get dressed. I even got to put my bra back on.
I don’t remember if Daniel was allowed to come back to my room or if I met up with him in the lobby. I didn’t speak to him. I was angry, upset, and ashamed. I just wanted to go home.
On the way home, I brought up my Easter concerns. It was Saturday afternoon and Easter was the next morning. He told me that he would take care of it. He went overboard that year. Maybe just because he did the shopping or maybe because he wanted to distract the kids from the nightmare that we had put them through. Either way, the kids had a great Easter and didn’t mention the madness from Friday night.
My mom didn’t know what to say when I got home. She was in disbelief, I think. I gave her a bit of a rundown of what happened and we didn’t really talk much more about it. And we’ve hardly spoken about it since. I think we all just want to forget. Maybe they can, but I never will.
I wish I could say that this was the end of this particular chapter of my story, but I can’t. 2017 was undoubtedly one of the most difficult years of my life and this was just the beginning.