When I had checked in at the hospital on Friday I was told my bed was needed for an emergency. I was given the choice to go home until Thursday or stay on another ward until then. I chose the latter. The medical exams are completed now, and we started changing the medication. Of course there are the usual side effects, a confused brain and going through every emotion and back. But I can deal with this, and I know it will pass. But I really hope I can change wards on Thursday and start treatment in earnest…
Yesterday I went to the psychiatric institutional outpatient’s department again to talk them out of admitting me for my med cange. But the colleague of my psychiatrist also recommended a inpatient stay. Well, then this is how it should be handled, I think. On a positive note, they were able to offer me a quick admission date, so treatment will start on Friday.
I am thinking about one thing the doctor said: “You always wait so long before you do something!”
Well, that’s right. For the last weeks I have been watching my energy disappear, finding thousands of excuses instead of looking for help. Typical me.
I am still somehow shocked. At the same time I am preparing everything. I will follow your blogs as I can, we will see how often I will be able to post something. The first weekend I have to stay on the ward, after that I will go home from Saturday to Sunday at least.
This is my opinion on my last quaterly meeting with my psychiatrist.
During my last inpatient stay I started taking a tricyclic anti depressant.
First: Things could be better. I have difficulties going to sleep, have to take another medication for that and am tired in the morning. Second: I gained a lot of weight and am pre diabetic now. That has to stop.
My psychiatrist recommends another inpatient stay to switch anti depressants, she thinks that would be better. I wasn’t too happy about this. There are nicer places than a psychiatric ward.
The more I think about it, the less I like this idea. If I continue to feel bad about it, I will talk again to my doctor. In the past I often changed meds safely at home. On he other hand I feel like the psychiatrist puts my well-being first, and this is a good thing.
Spring always is the anniversary of my psychiatric inpatient treatments. Mostly my mood got worse during winter, so many of my inpatient admissions happend in spring.
This spring means, my first inpatient treatment in child and adolescent psyciatry was 31 years ago, and my first inpatient stay as an adult happened 10 years ago.
What upsets me most today is the fact, that I was always told I would be fine again. Of course I believed this and worked hard. And I always was better for a few months, but then things always took a turn for the worse again.
Yesterday my OT therapist said, there must be people who found a way out of depression even after such a long time. She meant well, but I want to be realistic. I don’t expect to be cured from depression anymore. I just want to live my life as it is, the good and the bad times and all.
Acceptance doesn’t mean giving up, but other people often think it is. For me acceptance means to live according to my possibilities, and to stay on the golden middle course most of the time.
On the other hand, these anniversaries are a reason to give myself a pat on the shoulder, because I am still alive and kicking. This coin has two sides, as always.
Thursday Morning it was time for me to say goodbye, and fellow patients and nurses sent me home with heartfelt hugs and lots of well wishes.
Next stop was the outpatient clinic of my local hospital, because I needed a prescription for my new antidepressant. This took a few hours. Went to the pharmacy and grocery shopping, and then finally got on the bus that would bring me home.
When I opened the door, the dogs greeted me – good thing I came prepared and had brought treats. Then the cat joined us and demanded I let her out. When I opened the door for her, I noticed the yellow leaves on the ground and was confused for a moment. My brain had to process that I left for the hospital in summer, and now fall was here.
Putting my things back in the bathroom felt strange as well.
My husband came home very stressed, because his car had two flat tires. The mood got better after a good meal.
When evening came, I was absolutely done. So many feelings were swirling around in my head, I almost couldn’t deal with it. I was told this could happen. I also was told it was best to just let this pass, without fighting or holding onto these feelings. A few tears were she’d, but the storm passed.
I still haven’t realized I am home for good, but I think this will just take a few days. I don’t withdraw, I get things done, but I am not at 100 percent yet. But I don’t worry too much about this. My head still is wonderfully quiet, calm without being drowsy, alert without being panicky. I couldn’t ask for more at the moment.
…this is how the head physician introduced me to a new doctor on Monday. Well, my time here wasn’t easy, but I am aware of the fact I came a long way. The last step was changing my last dose of opiates for another pain medication on Monday evening. This was easy and caused no problems.
Today on my last day I talked to the staff to sum up the last eight weeks. I talked to one of the nurses first. She told me everybody was impressed by everything I have accomplished in these eight weeks.
The attending physician was next to discuss the latest blood tests. Right now, my liver and kidneys are handling the new antidepressant and pain meds very well.
Then I talked to the attending physician once more, because she had taken over for my therapist, who is on holiday. She agreed with the nurse I did work very well with them. And we discussed how to deal with the first days at home.
Finally, I met with the creative therapist. We talked about how I used the empty space therapy provided to create something new.
My mood today permanently changed from “Woohoo, I am going home!” to “I really hope I don’t mess this up!” But I was told this is normal.
Today I ran into the doctor that treated me for the first weeks of my inpatient stay here – the regular doctor was on vacation at this time. In hindsight, I was very lucky to meet her, because she is specialized in pain management and insisted that I quit taking opiates. I already knew that, but I was so afraid I would end up in more pain than I could handle.
I approached her and thanked her for getting this process started. She asked about my current medication and was very pleased that I am nearly finished weaning myself from opiates and will start an opiate-free life on Monday.
I told her that I am feeling very well. She smiled and said: “See? And you were so afraid at the beginning.”
Of course I had been afraid! Afraid of taking opiates, afraid of not taking them. Afraid that I had to live a life with more pain than I could take.
Well, I was lucky and nothing really bad happened. The process of tapering the opiates was hard sometimes, but it was possible.
It was really important for me to say Thank You to this doctor in person. Sometimes I just need a push to get going, but she always dealt honestly with my fears and concerns. She always talked eye to eye to me. And to be honest, treating patients with chronic pain surely is difficult.