Jail Break Version 3.0

It was less than 2 weeks after being discharged from The Dungeon that I ended up rehospitalized in the states psychiatric facility. my ‘Hospital in the Home’ nurses took me down to triage and I before I knew it, I ended up being admitted to an open mixed gender ward.

But I was on a path of self destruction, and the staff knew it. i can only remember snapshots of my time on the ward. The nurses caught me in the corner of my bathroom, a pair of leggings wrapped around my throat and my eyes bulging. So my clothes and shoes were confiscated. I was given a tear proof canvas sack to wear and moved to a single observation room with a camera in it. My sheets were made of tear proof canvas as well. I could only use plastic silverware.

Somehow I managed to get hold of a biro, and used the lid to gauge deep gashes into my thighs. Once again I was found out and this time was enough. I was moved to the locked “Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit” next door.

My first thoughts, when I arrived on the new ward were to escape. I had a brief Jurassic Park Moment where I attempted to climb the tall escape proof fence. Escape version 3.0. The nurses didn’t even bother trying to catch me- this fence was truly escape proof. Today was the day I ended up with a forced injection in my bum. I fell asleep, and woke up on ‘special’, where I had my very own nurse follow me around all day and all night.

I have never been so self destrucive. I didn’t care. Weeks later I look at the scars all over my legs and arms and think…why? What was it worth?

Now I carry scars I will hold forever. Scars to remind me where I have been, and where I will never go again.

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Jail Break: Vesion 2.0

“I’ve been trying hard not to get into trouble…but I’ve got a war in my mind.”
~Lana del Rey

I always think of this quote when I think of my time on steroids. Dark….self destructive…delusional. I found it hard to listen to my loved ones rather the voices in my head. I own a few more physical scars than I did when I was admitted. I angered easily with the staff, and when I did I screamed and swore. Half of me wanted to raise hell, the other half fought for sanity and safety and freedom from a locked ward.

But sometimes that side lost.

One morning I woke to be told that a surgical procedure arranged to ease the significant pain I was canned, after I had taken all the relevant preparations. I broke.

I had existed through the night practically counting the hours between oxycodene and the minutes until the procedure. I couldn’t live with the pain anymore. I ran for the exit. I was still on 1:1 supervision so my nurse ran after me and asked where I was going. I told her I was leaving. She told me she would call security.

“I don’t give a fuck!” I screamed back at her before running up the stairs. And that was that. Alarms went off, staff gathered. I half walked, half ran through the hospital, my nurse beside me still trying to reason with me. I looked behind me and was surprised to see six other staff following.

A part of me dissociated, and I saw myself from above. Haring through the hall, bare feet and pajamas, screaming, my speech peppered with profanity. This isn’t me!

Soon enough we met with security. Five of them for little old me with a limp and a catheter strapped to my leg. Instinctively I tried to dodge the guards, and instinctively they blocked me. They treated me like a wild, potentially dangerous animal. They raised their hands like traffic cops and asked me to sit down…they just wanted to talk.

It was about now I realized I had lost. I had 5 guards and 7 staff members who were going to take me back to hell. But even then I couldn’t let it go. In the middle of a circle of authority I yelled. I told them how crappy their hospital was. I ranted about my pain, I showed them my catheter, screaming that I couldn’t even pee by myself. “You have done this!” I shouted, gesturing to my self. Then, defeated I collapsed on the floor sobbing.

Two security guards lifted my limp body into a wheelchair, and wheeled me back to the ward.

It was only there that I realized what I had done.

Fuck.

Jail Break

I have a confession.

The other day I lost my mind.

“This is new?!” I hear you say.

Why, yes. Because there are levels of madness. And somehow just when you think you have reached rock bottom, another darker, more dingy hole opens up.

It was triggered by what felt like the thousandth failed treatment for my physical illness. Suddenly I snapped. I told my nurse, dutifully by my side (I am now an involuntary patient on 1:1 supervision under the Mental Health Act) that I was done. I was sobbing. That I was leaving.

“You can’t leave” she told me “you are an involuntary patient”.

I looked around. No one had a gun to my head. There are no locked doors. So I put on my dressing gown and slippers, marched to my locker and retrieved my purse. This was it. I was going to leave, and I was going to die.

(Clearly I had thought this through, as dressed in hospital pajamas and slippers would render me completely inconspicuous. And having a urinary catheter would enable me to outwit and outrun the burly security team.)

I started walking the stairs when suddenly all hell broke loose. My nurse set off an alarm. All available nurses descended. There was a lot of shouting from me. There were threats of calling security from them.

“Please don’t make me do this,” one of my favourite nurses said. “please don’t make me call security”.

And then I just broke. I wept uncontrollably, two nurses having to help me down the stairs. They held my hands as I cried those gut wrenching sobs that feel like they may kill you. I was given Thorazine. I slept.

And when I woke up I realized that I would be staring a these dilapidated walls for a while longer. But I was alive. And life, even in a run down psychiatric ward, trumps death any day.