“Hello, Miss. Rose, come in and have a seat. I am Dr. Green, and I will be your treating psychiatrist while you are with us. How are you feeling today?”
"I am doing okay thank you. How about yourself?"
“I am doing well thanks for asking Miss. Rose.”
Dr. Green then opened up this huge burgundy binder that had my name written on the side of it in big bold letters “QUEEN ROSE”. You can’t miss that I thought to myself. It was full of papers and it could barely contain them in the metal loops. It looked like it was about to bust open. Dr. Green then asked me, “so I see based on your paperwork you are in here because of suicidal thoughts is that correct?”
“Yes,” I stated.
“How long have you been experiencing thoughts of suicide?”
I looked up towards the ceiling wondering how long has it been since my first suicide attempt, and it finally came to me. “It has been on and off for almost ten years now,” I said.
He asked, “Do you have them often?”
“No” I stated. “Typically they happen after a bad heartbreak or someone close to me dying.”
“I see here based off your medical records you have dealt with severe depression since you were a teenager. Are you taking any anti-depressant medications for this, he asked?”
“I was, but I stop taking them I said calmly.”
He then asked, “why did you stop?”
I then explained, "I stopped because of the side effects and, I wanted to see if I can overcome this on my own without the need of medication. I don’t like being on pills and, I don’t want to be on medication the rest of my life.”
Dr. Green then asked, “How long have you been off of your medications?”
“I have been off for the past three months I believe.”
“That’s quite a long time to be off of your medications Miss. Rose. I see here that you walked into the hospital and told them to check you in because you were afraid you were going to kill yourself is that correct?”
“Yes that is correct,” I said calmly.
“How were you planning to kill yourself, Miss. Rose?”
“I was going to swallow two bottles of prescribed pills that I had on me.”
“I am glad to see that you did not take that option" he stated. What triggered you to want to take your own life, Miss. Rose?”
I was beginning to get frustrated with the amount of questions he was asking me. Why didn’t he just get to the point? Just ask how has life fucked you over so we can get on with it. I figure I give him the spill so I can get back to writing and being alone. “I had a bad breakup which resulted in me getting hurt for the hundredth time. I have been dealing with family issues when it comes to financial matters. I have enough student loan debt where I could have bought two houses instead. My job has been causing me stress by tripling my workload without tripling my pay. I love who I work for, but I hate what I do there. I work with disgruntled customers all day every day and, I have to listen to them bitch and moan about why they are dissatisfied with the products they decided to purchase. I have lost almost a hundred pounds, and I still don’t like what I see in the mirror, and I am starting to gain weight back. My boobs are sagging, along with my flabby arms and double layer stomach. I can’t afford plastic surgery to tighten this up so I have to deal with it till I get a financial miracle. I’m alone most of the time except when I am spending time with my two dogs. Plus I don’t deal with death to well, and I recently lost three family members and an old friend of mine in less than two months. Oh, and my mom's health is deteriorating because of spinal issues, and my dad lets say he's been on an extended vacation since I was three years old. That’s all I would like to share as of now, because there is so much more, and I don’t want to take up your entire day Mr. Green. I'm sure you have other patients to get to.”
He then stopped writing, took a deep breath, and looked up over his thin frame glasses and said, “Well Miss. Rose, it looks like we got our work cut out for us and we have a lot of work to do to help get you back on track. I want you to know that we are going to do everything we can to help coach you back to wanting to live again and coping skills to fight pass these triggers that you are experiencing in life. Before I let you go, I do have another question I would like to take the time to hear your answer. If that is okay with you Miss. Rose".
"Yes, that is fine" I replied.
"I see here based on the notes that you were crying in the cafeteria during lunchtime today. Why were you crying?”
He caught me off guard asking me this question. I didn’t know it had gotten back to him that I had a breakdown in the cafeteria that quickly. Plus I see a lot of people crying around here so I didn’t think it was a big deal to quietly shed a few tears. I then took a deep breath and slowly said, “The music the cooks were playing in the back of the kitchen made me cry.”
"Tell me what happened,” he said looking concerned.
I then looked down at the floor because my heart began to beat faster and my stomach began to twinge at the thought of having to remember that painful moment today. I really didn’t want to remember that moment, but I could see he was not going to let up until he found out what caused me to break down in front of everyone in the cafeteria. I then continued to look at the floor and began to tell him what happened. “As I was standing in line holding my lunch tray waiting for the lady behind the counter to make my plate, I heard his song on the radio playing.”
Dr. Green then asked, “whose song was playing on the radio?”
“My Ex,” I said. “He is a music producer out in L.A. and he produced the song for the singer who was singing it. I could hear the instrumentals he had created for her". My heart started to race, and my eyes began to fill up with tears. I tried to hold them back but the more the song played the more I began to fall apart in the lunch line. I tried to sing another song in my head to tune the song out, but it was no good. The lunch lady then helped interrupt the song in my head and asked if I wanted steak or chicken? I told her steak and proceeded down the line to get to the drink machine. While I was filling up my cup at the drink machine, a patient walked up to me and asked me what’s my role here? He looked like he had just thrown back three full bottles of liquor and ten beers. I could definitely tell he was an alcoholic and spoke with a slur. I told him I didn’t work here. I’m a patient. He then took a step back and looked at me and said in disbelief, “You’re a patient here? You sure don’t look like one. What you in for?” I looked kind of strange at him because he said it like we were in jail or something, but I could understand why because it feels like a jail in here. I then told him with tears still in my eyes “I am in pain” and I walked off to go sit at a table with the other patients. I had notice his song had stopped playing on the radio, but the song continued to play in my head which caused me to cry some more. I tried to wipe my eyes and fight back the tears because I did not want to make the other patients uncomfortable or notice me, but I was too overwhelmed by what just happened. The patients began to look at me but then held their head down and continued eating. I then got up and took my tray to the dishwashing counter and went and sat at the far side of the room at an empty table across from the MHA’s (Mental Health Assistants). I needed to take some time alone and isolate myself until I can get myself together. It was too much for me to take in. Me being in a psychiatric ward, me being around all these patients with different issues, and me dealing with my own issues. It was just too much going on in my head at the time.
Dr. Green then got up from his chair and walked from behind his desk and sat on the front edge of the desk facing me. He took off his glasses and looked at me in my eyes. He then spoke softly to me with a sincere tone, “Time Heals All Wounds, Miss. Rose. You need to allow yourself time to heal. Healing is a process and does not happen overnight. I wish there were a way to snap your finger and all the pain will go away if there were this place would be mostly empty instead of at full capacity. I believe that you can recover and overcome these challenges in life, but you have to want to. We can’t force you, but we can encourage and support you. How can we Miss. Rose help you while you are here in our care?”
I then looked down and to the right to think of the best way I can get help and what I would be comfortable doing, and it came to me. I then looked up at him and said, “I really want someone to talk to because I have been holding in a lot of things, and no one ever seems to sit down and listen to what Queen has to say. I’m always listening to everyone else and helping everyone’s else issues, but mine is never addressed, just ignored. So if I can have someone sit down and listen to me, that will help me I believe.”
He then smiled and said, "I believe that will help as well Queen." I smiled because he finally used my first name and made it personal. "I would like for you to visit with a therapist and also a dietician since you are a gastric patient while you are here at our facility. I also believe you will benefit a great deal from our group therapies which discuss some topics I believe will help you with handling different triggers that can cause you to go into a downward spiral. How does that sound?”
I then smiled and said, “Sounds good to me. Thank you.”
“That is what we are here for. You are very welcome,” he said. He then looked at me with a serious look and asked, “would you like to go back on your medication while you are here? I do believe it will help with the mood swings and the depression that you encounter.”
I then politely decline and said “I’m okay on that one. I rather not and just see how the therapy and group sessions go.”
He said “sounds like a plan, but if you change your mind just let me know and I will write it up for you. I don’t want to force you on any medication if you don’t want to be on it.”
I told him thank you, I appreciate it.
He replied, “You are free to go. I will meet with you tomorrow to see how things are going with you.”
I said okay, and thanks again and walked out of his office with my journal and pencil in my hand.
Well, that wasn’t too bad. He seemed pretty nice, and he is very handsome. He looked like he was Indian but I wasn’t sure. He is tall with jet black hair and a clean-cut face. I love the way he walks; he walks like he got some swagger in him. Must have grown up around black people. Too bad he is married, I saw the ring on his hand. That sucks. I know his wife is happy. Well onto our afternoon group now. It’s time for all us doped up crazies to gather and sing Kum By Yah while eating animal crackers and sipping on CapriSuns.