[NOT FROM] The Other Side

Or at least not from The Side I had in mind on September 20th.

Allow me to explain.

September 28. My father’s birthday.

Or would have been, anyway. He’s been dead for a couple of decades now.

What’s ironic is that I spent his birthday in a psychiatric ward. About two weeks ago, my mental health started to decline and particularly after a very difficult session with my psychotherapist in Tuesday, Sept 17. After that, it was all downhill and I got to the bottom of the pit quite quickly.

By Friday, September 20, I became suicidal. Fortunately for me, I happened to be talking to a friend on Facebook due to the fact that she was organizing a fundraiser and I was donating an item for a silent auction.

She noticed something was not quite right and asked me about it. I lost it, told her I was suicidal and that I thought I ought to go to the hospital. That in fact, I was intending to go and admit myself as soon as our chat was over.

She immediately volunteered to drive me there. She asked me where I was thinking of going. I said the Royal. She said she thought the Royal didn’t have Emergency anymore. She told me to stay put, that she would find out for me and then take me there.

She called back five minutes later. Yes, indeed the Royal didn’t have an ER anymore and that I should go to the Ottawa Hospital, either the Civic Campus or the General Campus.

Knowing the General from my graduate shool days, I chose that one. Ten minutes later she was at my door. But while I waited for her, I published The Other Side.

Now, not only my friend drove me to the General, but she stayed with me all the time until I was admitted, even though she has trouble with hospitals.

By then, my mental health had deteriorated rapidly and my anxiety attack became a full on psychotic episode. I would have been lost without her. She also made sure my daughter knew what was going on.

Thus, the sedated me heavily for the next three days and I don’t remember anything at all – ok, very little, from that weekend.

Apparently, I said some really funny stuff during those days. Even to the point of calling my daughter Henry. Don’t ask.

So yeah, how ironic it is that I should spend my father’s birthday in a psychiatric ward when it was his doing that put me here?

However, I have been the recipient of a lot of love and support from people near and far.

The staff here at the Inpatient Mental Health Unit (nurses, doctors, students, orderlies, social workers, occupational therapists) are all very nice. They are not only very professional but also very compassionate and helpful. I’ve been treated with nothing but respect. I am sure the staff of the ER is too, only that I don’t remember any of my time there.

I have a whole team devoted to bringing me back to life. And I should say they are succeeding at it.

I guess if one must be hospitalized due to mental illness, the General is the place to go.

So, my friends, I can positively say that I am doing much better now.

I cannot say – However, I’m completely out of the pit thus far. September 10 was my mother’s birthday (probably when it all started). She died on October 15. I am not quite safe yet.

I’m in a two-week involuntary admission, which expires on October 6. I am not heavily sedated anymore – as you can see, but the medication still makes me very groggy.

However, I now have my laptop (YAY for little victories) and thus I can blog.

Thank you so much to everybody that has shown their support in however way possible. The doctor was impressed on Friday when I told her about my blog and about A Canvas Of The Mind. I told her the support of the blogging community was priceless. Like in for-everything-else-there’s-Mastercard kind of priceless.

And last but not least, a very special THANK YOU to two wonderful people in my life. First, my daughter, always the trooper, who not only had to add my workload to her already packed agenda but also managed to come spend time with me and make sure I didn’t lack anything, EVERY SINGLE DAY. And then, to my best friend and soul mate, who as soon as he found out I was in the hospital, jumped in his car and drove 10 hours to be with me!

I love you both very much.

Oh, and special mention to my daughter’s boyfriend, who took extra work so my daughter could come visit with me every day!

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46 thoughts on “[NOT FROM] The Other Side

  1. Darlene Tytula says:

    This was very touching Claudia,. I feel for you. Life can be so difficult. I get down on myself a lot too, but I started reading some books to program my mind to be happy and it seems to be working. My niece Megan Landry wrote a song that I would like to share with you. I want you listen to it several days, pay close attention to the message in the song. It’s very uplifting and I’m sure you’ll be able to relate to it. I love you Claudia, and hope you come back 100% better and if you ever need someone to talk to just call. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1KhUpAjC-M

  2. Animalcouriers says:

    Claudia, so sorry to have missed what happened to you but very very relieved you’re getting the care and love you need to get through this episode. You are blessed by your family and friends and that should be enough to carry you through. You’ve touched a lot of us on the blogosphere too so please try and absorb some of the healing love and strength we’re sending through the ether. Keep strong and let us know how you are doing xAx

    • Summer Solstice Girl says:

      Yes, I know I am VERY blessed. I have the love and support of my family and I have many friends that love and support me. Both IRL and here in the blogosphere :)

      Thank you SO much for your support and kind words. They truly carry me <3

  3. savemefrombpd says:

    Sending you MUCH love and strength. You are truly adored by all of those around you both far and near and am so glad that you are in a safe place and are feeling a little better. Keep on going, stick with it, hang in there.


  4. Teresa says:

    *hug*hug*Hug* oh my dear brave Claudia! How I wish I was there to help and how glad I am of the people you have there. I’m trying my best not to write with a ridiculous amount of exclamation points.
    I am very proud of you for realising what was happening and going to the hospital. Very proud.
    Now, how do I send a care package to you?
    Much love from Germany,

  5. Herman says:

    Hi Claudia. We all miss you a lot. Wishing you all the best. Take care.

    PS: Bowie says “Meow!”, I guess it means he’s sending you big hugs!

  6. bpnana says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience with us. You are surrounded by love and light and I wish you the very best. Keep smiling your lovely smile! How blessed you are to have family and loved ones close!

  7. purplemary54 says:

    ((Hugs)) I was getting a little worried, so I’m thrilled that you’ve got such a wonderful support system. Not to mention a medical establishment that allows you to get treatment for mental illness in a clean, compassionate environment. (If you lived here in the states, things might not be going so well right now.)

    If it helps at all, John Lennon’s birthday is Oct. 9. Maybe some good music will help a little. (You know me; I’m a firm believer in musical therapy.) Keep kicking the darkness.

  8. No Blog Intended says:

    Man, that’s so… heavy… Glad your friend took care of you, seriously! And glad you have a whole team and a great daughter and awesome friends to keep you alive and kicking. I hope that your darkness will in the end still turn into kittens (the sooner you see them again the better!).
    And you know, it may sound lame because we only know each other from the Internet, but I hope you know we need you here! And whatever happens, you can always talk or whine or something, I’m always willing to listen.
    By the way, awesome masterpiece! :)

    • Summer Solstice Girl says:

      Thank you SO much. And by the way, I don’t think it is lame. That is exactly how I feel. Today, you are all there for me. Tomorrow, I’ll be there for whoever needs a kind word, a shoulder to cry on, of an ear to listen. That is the beauty of the community.

      Much love to you, beautiful!

  9. Mari says:

    Claudia, thank you for sharing this. I have experienced this second hand a few times and I’d like to give you support and love for being honest and open. Know that you are thought of and I wish you well in your future recovery. Never be afraid to ask for help – I’m very glad you did!

  10. Lunch Sketch says:

    Hmm. I pressed Like last night and then fell asleep typing a comment.
    I’m sure I wrote something really profound and life changing … but it is gone now ;-)

    But seriously. Good friends and good family can get us through so much. Glad to hear you had a good dose of both when most needed :-)

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