Thursday, May 5, 2011

Hello World

Life has been freakishly busy and I apologize for my lack of posting.
But I promise you, I have a very good reason.

I'd like you to meet Garrett.

He was born on April 3rd at 3:48 in the morning.

He came 2 weeks early and weighed 7 pounds 2 ounces and was 20 inches long.

Absolute perfection. The best way to finish off our family which now consists of 7 people.

Lucky #7, I'd venture to say.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Episode 38- I Hate Thinking About It

The second hospital stay was pure hell. For some reason it was very different than my first stay. During the first stay I felt safe. I felt like I was there to get better. Maybe I was naive and that's why I had an easier time. This next go around I had a newborn baby and a two year old at home and all I wanted to do was get back to them. Cody brought Ethan up to see me the first few times and then he stopped. It was way too hard on Ethan and on me every time they would leave. He did, however, bring Hailey up a few more times. I tried my best, but I barely recognized her. I tried for the sake of everyone else to be a normal and doting mommy to her when she would come in, but I was faking it. She was still detached from me.

I hate thinking about that hospital stay. That looooooong hospital stay that could not end soon enough. I don't want to rehash all of the yucky details. How I developed an addiction to chloralhydrate and trazadone and what a mess that left me with. Or how the psychiatrists that I saw seemed crazier than me. Ha, I discovered there must be a reason that people go into that specialty. They must have some grotesque fascination with the world of psychiatry because they themselves are nut jobs.

I hate thinking about the time that we were in group and I tried to keep things light because I was about to slit my wrists if I heard one more story about someone being molested or abused as a child. The next day the doctor running group reprimanded me for making light of the situation and not being "sad enough". I never made fun of anyone or their plight, but I did try to make things not so terribly sad. And I got in trouble for it time and time again.

I hate thinking about the time that Eric wanted to get some sunshine. In there, depending on what level we had advanced to in our treatment, we were aloud certain amounts of time to be outside in the sun. I may have written about this in an entry from my first stay, I can't remember. Why on earth, would someone battling something like severe depression, only be allowed such minimal time in the SUNSHINE?? The one thing that their brain and body so desperately craved. So Eric and I were sitting in the hallway one afternoon and he was jittery and wanted some air. At one point the huge metal electronic doors opened briefly while a staff member entered the "compound". And without missing a beat, Eric jumped up and ran out of them. Alarms sounded and people got on walkie talkies and rushed outside. And do you know what they found outside the hospital? Eric sitting peacefully in the grass. The air was cold and the sky was sunny. And he sat there taking it in. And he was on lock down for two days to follow. Yup, in a room with actual padded walls with a door which only had a tiny window. I peeked in on him from time to time and he looked like a caged monkey pacing back and forth. I hate thinking about that.

I hate thinking about the time when we were out on one of our brief ten minute walks. It was cold and misty outside and we walked in single file like prisoners. Some people were in handcuffs. We walked and the supervising doctor talked to us about something. As we walked my feet became antsy and before I knew it they started into a more brisk walk, and then a slow jog. I kept my hands tucked into my coat pockets to keep them warm, but it's as if my feet had a mind of their own. And so they moved faster and faster. I never was in a full run, but I for sure was going and moving and working my heart. The doctor kept yelling at me to get back in line and to slow it down. But my feet kept moving. It's like I was running in place but still moving with the group. And I know it's not because I was trying to keep warm. It's because something inside of me was yelling to MOVE!! And not to run away, but to exercise. I craved it like Eric craved the sunshine that day. I couldn't control it and it's like instinct took over. But I got lunch isolation that day because I was setting a bad example for people around me. I hate thinking about that.

5 Years

Look at the girl in this picture. What do you see? I see a girl is beyond beautiful, both inside and out. I see a girl who is obsessed with ballet and animals. I see a girl who smothers me on a daily basis with hugs and kisses and "I love yous". I see a girl who is creative and artistic and will be starting kindergarten in August. I see a girl who I love more than words can say.

Hailey Jane turned five years old in January. I've done a lot of pondering and reflecting with this huge milestone in her life. Where I was five years ago, what I was going through, and the journey I've taken to become the person I am today. My OB and dear friend, Mike, and I joked at a recent appointment that we have now lived together for five and half years. In a way it really feels like that! Hailey is with me at every baby appointment and at this particulr one, it touched me how Dr. Mike interacted with her. There was something different about it as we talked about what a big milestone her fifth birthday was for all of us. He scooped her up in his arms, gave her a huge hug and kiss on the cheek and told her how special she is. Then he held her up so she could hold the doppler as we listened to the baby's heart beat. Oh I guess I have not posted since Novemeber when we found out we are having another perfectly healthy little BOY!! He will be arriving on or before April 7th.

Five years. So much has happened during this time, and it seems like a lifetime ago that I was sitting in the psychiatric unit at Lakeview Hospital. I was there at this time in 2006 and it feels surreal to think about.

Today I was at the park and talked to a couple of ladies who are readers of this blog...or who WERE readers until I stopped writing in it. I make excuses all the time about why I stopped writing. Yes, I am busy beyond belief and life has thrown us some curve balls in the last couple of years which have taken up huge amounts of my time and emotional energy. But the truth of that matter is that I feel that I'm not the same person who sat in a lonely bedroom on the fourth floor of Lakeview Hospital in 2006. I'm not the same person, but it doesn't mean that that person didn't help mold me into the person I've become. Does that make sense?

The truth of the matter is it often scares me to think about that time. Hollow and scared are the best words to describe who I was back then. But I do need to continue to write this story, if for nothing else than my own posterity. I want to remember what happened and I want my children to one day understand this time in our lives. It was a very significant time in our family history, a time that should not be scary as it was.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Back Again...and Expecting

Hello readers! No you are not imagining things...I am back again. And by looking at the above picture, you can see I am pregnant! This is baby #5 and it's for sure our caboose. I'm filled with a lot of mixed feelings about ending this jounrey in my life.

I must admit that this pregnancy has found me sad and weepy a lot of the time. Sometimes I start to worry because all I can think of is how afraid I am of having a "Hailey" experience all over again. But I know I am in control and I can do things to prevent that from happening again. Recognizing the warning signs is the key, and I am doing that. Just tonight I sent my OB a lengthy email explaining some of my feelings, so we will jump on a game plan.

I'll try to go into detail about my feelings in a later post. As of now I took a Lunesta 30 minutes ago (Yes, a Lunesta. GASP!) It does happen on the rarest of ocassions. I may be an expert at this, but I am still human.

I am due the second week of April and am so excited to meet the final member of our family. My big U/S is scheduled for Nov 17th, in two weeks. Wish us luck!

Monday, April 5, 2010

The First Night Back

Journal Entry- February 25, 2006

This has been a crazy day. I went to see Schneiman this morning, not having any idea what would take place by doing so. Now I am sitting back on the 4th floor of the hospital. Maybe part of me always knew I would end up back here. I fought it tooth and nail. I haven't done this much crying in so long. Crying means I'm alive, right? I didn't want to come back. But I was afraid that if I resisted too much, it would be the end of my marriage. SO here I am.

Yesterday I went into that appointment with Draper feeling totally cynical. But I was surprised. We ended up not doing the exam. We just talked. I know as I look back at the course of events in the last several months, certain people have been placed in my life- not by chance, but by plan. Draper is one of those people. When I first learned back in August that I would have to see a parinatologist, I was beyond devastated. But I now see that it was a blessing in disguise. I now consider Mike Draper MD a friend. Yesterday Cody, Draper, and I sat in his office and talked and cried.

Despite all that, my appointment with Schneiman landed me back in here. I don't think I really want to die, but he still thought I was a danger to myself and I needed help. Dr. Neuman and Dr. Draper both agreed.

Leaving Ethan and Hailey this afternoon was pure hell. I held them as long as I could, which wasn't long enough. Right now my shirt still has the smell of Hailey's spit up on it. I want to hold them right now. It hurts. I find it hard to breathe with out them. I thought I wasn't bonded with Hailey, but this aching in my heart says otherwise. I love her. I love him. I don't want to die. But I don't want to hurt either. I have to get better for my wonderful husband and precious children. I just don't know if that is possible. What if it's not? What if I am always sick?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Episode 37- Meeting Eric

After the sun went down I found myself in the recreation room. The lights were off and I sat on the couch, thinking I was alone. However there was another person in the room, sitting in a chair across the way. Before long the two of us were talking. I don't know how the conversation started, but I remember it being strange. It all felt so surreal. *Eric was 28 and had tried to commit suicide. Obviously he had been unsuccessful. Eric would turn out to be a great friend to me. He had a sad story and to this day I think about him. Although he and I resided in the same town, I don't know what became of him. We shared those weeks together and he taught me a lot. But His story is his own, and because I respect him I will not share it here.

During those weeks I grew to love Eric. Kind of as a brother, and kind of as a stray puppy that you want to take home. I have more stories than I can count about Eric and me. Our adventures in the looney bin...that would make a great story in itself. In fact, I journaled details about each of the hospitalmates that I shared that time with. Each had a specific, interesting, and sad story. However, I was the only one in there who thought about drowning her newborn baby in the bath tub.

Episode- Another Round Of Hell

It was the day my life seemed to end. I was all but committed. I cried the entire way to the hospital, literally hoping to die. I was already deader than dead on the inside. I look back on this time and I wonder what it was like for Cody. He has never talked about it much, but I know he was terribly hurt by this whole nightmare. He felt powerless to save me. He couldn't save our children's mother. He couldn't help me. So he did the only thing he DID have power over. He sent me back to the hospital.

It was the same as before. The sounds, the smells, the scenery. The process was the same too. I was admitted through the ER where they evaluated me, decided almost immediately that I was a threat to myself, so within an hour I was back on the 4th floor of the hospital. The psychiatric unit. I wanted to die. But again I thought of my babies back home and I think it was the only thing keeping me alive.

This time I had a roommate. I had been lucky before that I had the room to myself. But now I shared it with a middle aged woman named Becky. I don't know the problems that Becky had, but I know she was a cutter. She had knife marks all over her body. She would sit on her bed every day rock back and forth. Sometimes she would go to group, but mostly she wouldn't.

Cody left me in my room after the hundreds of evaluations were over. As he left me I desperately wanted to run after him and plead with him to take me home. But at the same time as I watched him leave I wanted to hurt him. I wanted to hurt him like he was hurting me. I wanted to throw something at him. I wanted to scream at him. I wanted to rip his heart out and make him feel what I was feeling. But instead, some drug overtook my body and I lost consciousness for a while.