I’ve been to hell and back.
This past Friday evening, I was admitted on a 5150 hold. I would tell the doctors that it was a mistake, a rash decision… I was just upset, I was drinking too much, sliced my wrists up a little, took a couple Ativans… just an innocent cocktail. A small flirtation with death.
The truth is, ladies and gentlemen, if my therapist hadn’t have called an ambulance after that slurry phone call, I probably wouldn’t be typing this. However, the sad fucking question that’s looming over my head: Am I okay?
Friday. I’ll skip over the details of my attempt at a grand exit. Fast forward to the emergency room. I remember the police officers posted outside my hospital room. I remember my girlfriend (ex-girlfriend? I refuse to fucking believe that.) standing over me, worried, hurt, angry, scared. I remember the tetanus shot in my right shoulder, the IVs plunged into my veins. I remember my stuffed animals. I thought I had died and that I was experiencing some kind of weird limbo shit.
I thought I died.
Saturday. I’m carted off to the psych ward, escorted by an officer and a nurse. Wow, what a great delusion it was. I thought I was some kind of celebrity. I was taken to the second floor. Apparently, that’s where the severe cases went- the ones that had just tried to hang themselves. The ones with no hope in their bones.
It was terrifying. Then, it got better as I learned my way around things. My first friend there was Tyler- who I endearingly nicknamed Tyler Durden. After all, Fight Club is my favorite movie of all time.
A strange and older man asked me something in broken English… something along the lines of, “Can you help me?” I’m a caring person, or used to be, so I said yes. He motioned me towards his room. I thought that he just wanted me to open something for him. No. As soon as I walked in, the slammed the door. He had a shit-eating grin on his face. He told me to get on the bed. I don’t know why the fuck I didn’t scream. Looking back on it, I was way too fucking out of it and was in shock that this was even happening. Well, for lack of a better phrase, he whipped it out, and my stomach dropped. Great. I’m going to get raped in his hell hole of demented shit.
I managed to push him off of me in a weird, blurry mess. Something bloomed inside of me, or rather died. As I walked out from his stupid room, I joined Tyler Durden in his lap around the ward. And I didn’t say shit.
(That was about 2 hours after I was admitted. And I hadn’t really given it any thought until now.)
Almost raped in a fucking mental ward. Ha!
Next, just as I was getting used to this guy and Tyler Durden, the nurses said they were relocating me downstairs with the more “rehabilitated” patients. I took it as a good sign.
I was taken downstairs. I thought it was a fucking joke. There were patients numb out of their minds, pounding on tables, pacing, talking to the TV. It was just getting better and better.
After they gave us lunch, I retreated to my hospital room with barred windows and lonely, beige walls. I cried. I broke down and I thought VERY fucking hard about how the fuck I was going to kill myself in the hospital. Obviously, everything was baby-proofed. I couldn’t figure out a way to kill myself. So, I cried some more. I clutched on to the one stuffed animal they let me bring to my prison cell and I cried. I cried because I felt like I failed, I cried because I knew my girlfriend was going to leave me, I cried because I hurt her, I cried because I didn’t know what else to do. And then, it stopped.
I felt nothing. Nothing. I was numb. I didn’t even feel cynicism. I was numb to EVERYTHING and I didn’t give two fucks anymore.
It’s great to be here. I first came around in 2010 in my hold. Everyone fucking loved me. It’s either eat or be eaten. So I fucking cooked the shit out of everyone there. The nurses loved me. One of the nurses wanted to fuck my brains out. I would have let him if I wasn’t released. And everyone loved me now in this shitty pocket of humanity, of the mental health system. I walked down the hallways and I owned the fucking hell out of the very tiles. I never slept. I kept us alive.
And she stuck in my head. It was me, I think, I remember every little detail so painfully…
I wish I could tell you though what else happened on Saturday. Or Sunday or even Monday, or even Tuesday when I was released. But honestly, time didn’t even exist there. Everything and everyone melts together.
From the time I heard Lucy’s laugh, I knew that it was going to be a ride. Probably a fun ride, too. And it was. I had visitors in my confinement, I made friends, I laughed with my fellow inmates and it was okay.
Until I got out.
My girlfriend picked me up. My walls were built high and were so incredibly strong. I told her that it wasn’t that bad. I actually kind of missed it.
Well, I’m telling you now that it actually was that fucking bad and I am traumatized. I can’t even get myself to come out of this fucking stupor.
She was so sweet though. She had done my laundry and had cleaned my car. She made it so easy to come back home.
After we had our talk, the inevitable break up talk, after we kissed and hugged and cried, after she drove off, after my heart broke for the last time, I broke, too. I drove to that bridge, that suicide bridge. As the rain lightly came down on top of me, I stared down at the cement. I stood on top of the fucking bench and pressed myself against the railings. I wanted to feel SOMETHING. I wanted to cry and have this revelation of WOW I’m happy to be alive! Wow! I’m so happy I’m here!
Pressed up against the railing, counting the blessings in my life, I felt nothing.
I am broken.
And I think I want to repair myself. I want her arms around me and I want her to just tell me that I’m okay. Maybe that’s a simple sign of hope…
I drove around last night, I met up with friends. I cried on his shoulder about how I miss my dad, how I miss myself, I miss the fucking flame that used to burn relentlessly inside of me, all of me, all of us.
The question is: Am I okay?
No. Not this time. As Sexton said, “That’s what I do: I make coffee and occasionally succumb to suicidal nihilism. But you shouldn’t worry-“
I’ve done this a thousand times before. I binge, I get high, I get drunk, I cut, sometimes I do a little more. But I ALWAYS bounce back. It’s just what I do. I’ve always done it.
I’m not bouncing back. I’m not even here.