Saturday, October 25, 2008

Thoughts from the Neuropsych Unit

I was admitted to a neuropsych unit on October 21st a little bit before midnight. It was a scary experience but I knew it was where I needed to be. With the help of my loving and always supportive husband I am posting a bit about my experience so far. I've had times of frustration, times of anger, times of clarity, and even some pretty great times of laughter. I hope that the following will answer some questions you may have.

Why am I here?

The stress, anxiety and depression I have been experiencing has come to a head. These things, complicated by the pain and fatigue of the last year and fibromyalgia became too much for me, as strong as I am, to handle. I started to feel unsafe due to thoughts of suicide and a desire to hurt myself.

What kind of help am I getting here?

Safety, first and foremost. Medication adjustment and oversight. Referrals for professional help when I am released. And reassurance by others who have experienced similar things and are continuing on with their lives.

Two questions we get asked frequently:

Do you feel that you want to hurt yourself or others?
I might still feel the desire to hurt myself but mostly I want to yell and throw things. I have anger over being here, this is because I am mad at myself for letting myself get to the point of needing to be here.

Do you see or hear things that aren't really there?
For sometime now I have been seeing cats. Before we got Popeye I used to think I saw a cat hide under the table, desk, or run under the couch. Today I thought I saw a cat but it was really just the base of a medical cart that carries the equipment for taking vital signs. Why cats? Maybe there is some kind of symbology (movie reference anyone?) there.

So, you might ask:
Why would I want to hurt myself?
I think the catalyst behind hurting myself is because I want the pain that I feel on the inside (the mental, physical, and emotional) to be recognized on the outside.
Why would I want to share this experience and my thoughts with anyone?
I want to do this, share these things with my blog readers, family and friends to let others who may be feeling similar thoughts of feelings that they are not alone. I want to show that you can be a strong woman and still struggle on your way to success. I do have special and specific goals for myself and they will be accomplished. This is just a step that I have to take and it might be the same for other people.

Do I think being admitted here affects the future?
Yes, I do think this will affect the future. But these will be positive results. It is another life experience that I can share with others. If people can't understand or at least acknowledge my time here as a positive learning experience, they are not the people I want to find myself associating with. That is my choice to not associate with those people and it's the healthy choice.

So these are just a few feelings, thoughts, and observations that I have had in the three days I have been h ere. There may be more to say before I leave, or you might here from me when I return home. Word this morning was that a discharge plan will be made for early next week.

Until then check out some of my favorite websites:

Chronic Babe -great inspiration for all babes!

A Chronic Dose - this is by the author of the book that I am currently reading, Life Disrupted: Getting Real About Chronic Illness in Your Twenties and Thirties.

But You Don't Look Sick
- great resources and a great community on the message boards for support.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for being strong enough to share. It sounds like you are still believing in your favorite verse as a teenager...Philippians 4:13. You can add one of mine. When I can't seem to find an answer..Psalm 46:10 I love you much xoxoxoxoo mom

Michelle said...

I just wanted to let you know that I'm thinking of you. I think you are a very strong and brave person to not only know when you need help but to also have the ability and courage to ask for it. Hang in there. I'm here for you in whatever way you need.

Michelle

Dhiroj said...

Hang in there, Chrissy. We all wish you well. Zara wants to make you brownies.

RE: "Why cats?": Cats are prominent symbols of mystery, magic and independence in many cultures. "In ancient Egypt they held a position of special privilege... In Scandinavian lore, the cat was associated with the goddess of fertility, Freyja. In the Hindu tradition Shasthi, the goddess of childbirth, is depicted riding upon a cat. Cats appear frequently in the tales of the Brothers Grimm and many other folk stories from around the world.

"To cats have been attributed a wide variety of traits--often contradictory. Curiosity, nine lives, independence, cleverness, unpredictability, and healing are but a few...

"Cats are at home after dark, and yet most humans want them to be traditional pets during the day. When they do not respond in this manner, they are accredited with independence and unsociability. Because the dark is the home of fears and those things humans do not want to see and can't see, the cat has come to be associated with magic and mystery. The truth is that cats have more rods in the retinas of their eyes, which enhances light perception. It enables them to see effectively in the dark...

"Examine the colors, the character, the behaviors of your own cat [or the one(s) you're seeing.] Everything about it will be significant. Many books exist on the lore and the character of cats. Whether domesticated or wild, anytime a cat becomes prominent, look for magic and mystery to come alive."

~Ted Andrews, Animal-Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small

Peace,

The Solidays

Dhiroj said...

Oh, I forgot to mention--Zoei thinks it's cool that you're seeing cats. She wishes she could see things that other people can't.

:)

Becky said...

Hey Chrissy, don't know why I had a sudden urge to check out your blog, but I'm glad I did. You are so very brave, even if you don't believe so. Listen carefully to your doctor's advice, surround yourself with supportive folks, and make sure Ryan has support, too. And I just love that in a difficult time, you retain your most unique spirit through the manifestation of cats. You are truly one-of-a-kind and that is a good thing!

Penny Reid said...

Good for you, Chrissy, to share your experience so that others who are having the same struggles know how to make a wise decision and not feel like they have to keep it a secret.
And good for Ryan for being the loving and supportive husband that he is. The pain and suffering you guys are going through is not in vain. You are helping many others by sharing through your blog.
Love and prayers, Penny

Toby & Sadie said...

I've been a bad reader, got too busy in day-to-day life, but was checking out Pastor Jason's blog and saw the link to yours and had to come over to catch up.

Glad I did.

You and Ryan are marvelous and strong people. You'll get through this. It is a challenge and always will be. God doesn't give us more than we can handle.

I thought that was "lame" comment until we lost dad. Now I'm realizing how true it is. Things seem darkest just before the dawn.

You are in our prayers. If you ever need something just holler.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dear Chrissy Joy; Sending Heart Love and Heart Prayers to you, Ryan also.So proud of you for your strength and courage to know to ask for help. That comes from your strong Faith that you have grown in through the years. We love you Chrissy and want you well.
Blessings in Christ. Sheryl

Anonymous said...

Hi Dear Chrissy Joy; Sending Heart Love and Heart Prayers to you, Ryan also.So proud of you for your strength and courage to know to ask for help. That comes from your strong Faith that you have grown in through the years. We love you Chrissy and want you well.
Blessings in Christ. Sheryl

Michelle said...

I just wanted to let you know that I'm thinking of you. I think you are a very strong and brave person to not only know when you need help but to also have the ability and courage to ask for it. Hang in there. I'm here for you in whatever way you need.

Michelle