Tuesday, April 30, 2013

History (Part V)

Thomas and I drove up to what was considered the best psych hospital in our area and we got out and went inside the E.R. It was completely empty and the lobby alone was more state of the art than our local hospital. They whisked Thomas off before I had finished the paperwork and I was in a panic because he was out of my sight and out of earshot. The whole ride up there Thomas quietly questioned why we were doing this and I tried to explain to him in a gentle way that this hospital would be better for him than the one in our town. At this point in time Thomas didn't believe he was sick at all so I knew that I was on borrowed time to get him situated in a new hospital before he figured out what was truly going to happen for him.

In the E.R. the nurse came in and took vitals and asked some questions. Thomas didn't open up too much but he said enough about his state of mind to warrant the nurse to call in the on-call psych doctor. While we waited Thomas got angrier and angrier and promised repeatedly that he wouldn't harm himself and could we go home now? You see, I had brought him up there under the guise (to him) that he was still a harm to himself and he backed me up to some degree because he stated that he didn't feel safe to be without me for fear he might sink back into suicidal ideation. The fact of the matter was that I had him up there because now I knew about his deeply held delusions and had been told by several people that he was actively psychotic and needed hospitalization. We had sat in therapy days before and he had stated to his therapist and I that he didn't need, nor want, medication for his delusions so hospitalizing him for something he didn't want was a risk.

The on-call psych walked in and started asking Thomas questions and that is when Thomas unleashed. He is not a yeller, in fact he rarely shows anger at all but in that moment he was mad he was there and he let that psych doctor know it. In between telling the doctor that he believed himself to be an enemy of the state (among other shocking things) he told the doctor in anger and frustration that he didn't want to be there. He was the picture of psychotic and I sat there deathly still hoping that the doctor saw what I saw and that they would admit him to the hospital.

It wasn't very long before Thomas was ushered into a white van to be moved to the youth acute ward. Shockingly they had found a bed after telling me on the phone that they had no beds available. What everyone had promised me back home came to pass. They had told me to just get him into the E.R. and a bed would mysteriously open up. They were right.

I followed the white van across the hospital campus and came to this quiet, one-story, set back off the road, building and I parked and followed him in. Thomas was still angrily stating that he didn't belong there but at that point they had decided that he very much belonged there and since he was a minor and I had brought him in in the state of mind that he was, he secured himself in this place without any more doubt from all of us.

It broke my heart as they took him away from me to be examined and given a pair of scrubs and sticky slipper socks. They sat me in a room alone and as I sat there doubting myself and worried and crying for Thomas I waited for the psych doctor to come in.

He came in and started asking me all sorts of questions and I told them what I knew. He wrote furiously as I talked and his questions became very pointed and I knew where he was headed. Nobody up to that point had uttered anything about schizophrenia but after the last 6 months, heck the last 6 years, I realized exactly where the doctor was going with his questions. When he was done questioning me he stated casually that he thought Thomas MIGHT have schizophrenia but that further testing was needed. He promised me that he would do all sorts of different tests and I waited again alone in the room as they brought Thomas to me.

When Thomas walked in the room he was mad. Madder than I'd ever seen him before. The psych doctor helped me explain to Thomas that he needed to stay and that they were keeping him against his will and Thomas stated repeatedly that he didn't want to be there. I choked back tears and continued to try to remain dead calm as the doctor explained their reasoning for keeping him there and then it came time to say goodbye to Thomas.

We stood up and I reached out to hug Thomas. Along with the doctors, I had become the enemy too but he half-heartedly hugged me and stalked off down the hall with the doctor. I walked out of that hospital into the dark, empty parking lot and got in my car. I sat there and sobbed and prayed that I had done the right thing for him and I started the car and drove slowly to the hotel that would be my home for the remainder of Thomas' stay.

Nothing could have prepared me for what would happen the next day and I'm grateful to God that I had no idea about it and as I checked into the hotel and got to my room, I dropped my bags on the floor, sunk into the chair crying and asked myself,

"What have I done to my boy?!?!?"

(My Facebook Page About Schizophrenia)

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