Waking up...

(This is a weird story... I was on drugs. But it happened and it was such a crazy/powerful experience that one, such as I, who is an over-sharer-of-experiences, just has to share. And just maybe some anesthesiologist somewhere is reading this and might have a wee bit more sympathy for the depressed/angry/immovable patient he is forced to come back to check on.)

I don't do medicine. At age 15, I swore it off when my mom gave me some NyQuil for a bad cold. I laid in bed for the next 6 hours completely whacked out. I went to sleep but it was this awful I-am-still-half-awake-sleep that left me dreaming psycho dreams and fully waking up every 20 minutes. This and numerous other bad medicine experiences (the worst being the painkillers they gave me when I was hospitalized for a kidney infection while pregnant with Paisley) have left me cautious of most drugs.

Because of this, when they told me that they would be using "some great drugs" to put me to sleep to perform the D&C, I was immediately petrified of the side effects. I remember telling Blake that I was afraid I was going to wake up puking... if only that was the case... puking would have been 100 times better than what actually happened.

After the procedure, my first moment of coming to was opening my eyes to bright lights and slowly looking over to see an extremely overweight man with awful-Donald-Trump-colored-hair. I hated him instantly and ferociously. He said something to me but I loathed the very space he took up in my curtain-partitioned room so I didn't listen.  I turned back over and let the black take me back in. 

My next moment of coming to was my curtain was open and striding towards me was an angel in the brightest yellow shirt on the face of the planet. I instantly liked everything about this person of light and somewhere in my mind three thoughts clicked - that is Blake, you are married to him, and that shirt could serve as flares for incoming airplanes. That was enough work and I closed my eyes once more.

The next time I awoke, the awful nurse who my mean/crazy brain was calling fat (I am sorry but my brain fixated on his weight during this event so that is who he become to me - Fat Nurse. Part of the madness during these moments was how much I hated someone solely based on their physical appearance) was asking if I wanted to drink something.  

Drinking seemed insurmountable... so did moving... breathing... and living. I turned to Blake and said, "I don't want to be here. I want it to be black again. Can you make it black again?" He shook his head no and stroked my head - he said it was okay, that I was waking up in the surgery center, and that I didn't really mean what I was saying. By the look in his eye, I knew I was crazy and I hated that. Somehow I could distantly remember every stupid YouTube video of people after the dentist acting crazy and I felt intense pity that anyone videoed them in such a vulnerable state. There was nothing funny about this - I was crazy and I couldn't fix it. I had told Blake previous to going under that he was under no circumstance allowed to pull out the camera. I closed my eyes wanting it to be black but the black wouldn't come back.

I knew everything that I was doing... and I knew that everything I was doing was crazy. I had my normal brain still in me and it was whispering soothing thoughts and trying to make me see sense. But there was this crazy brain and it had taken over and it controlled my physical body. Everything I said and did and ultimately felt came from crazy brain. I felt suicidal. I did not want to live. If I had been capable of getting a lethal dose of anything at that moment I would have taken it. The only thing I could do with my body is move my head back and forth, dart my glared eyes at all the suspicious stuff in the room (AKA everything), and speak. I could not convince my body to move even though the nurse is asking me over and over if I would like to get dressed.

The nurse doesn't know me so I turn to the person who does, Blake, and tell him all the horrible things that my crazy brain is telling my mouth to speak: "I can't get dressed. I can't go home. I can't be a mom. I want to die. I can't be here anymore. Is this real? I don't like it here. Why can't it be black again." And on repeat again and again, in a hiss of a tone, "I DON'T LIKE HIM." Him being Fat Nurse, of course.

I don't know how long this went on. It felt eternal. I was weepy and depressed and totally pissed at Blake who kept shoving a straw from a can of apple juice into my mouth. He felt he needed to flush my system so he pushed and pushed for me to drink as I said awful things like, "I hate you. I hate apple juice. I hate this." as I pretended to drink. The nurse moved onto offering me food - crackers or cookies - and I retorted that I wanted a hamburger. He said that this wasn't possible so I turned away  and decided I was done talking to him for good. Didn't he see that I was crazy and that a hamburger might just fix this.

At this point, it clicked that I wasn't alone in this room. I could hear all the other patients coming to from being under and they were all acting so insanely normal. Drinking, eating, and putting on their clothes. They were doing what my nurse wanted me to do but what was completely incapable for me to do. I felt like a failure. That I was no good at this and that my normal brain was lost forever. This was all very frightening because I could still access my normal brain but it was just trapped behind a crazy brain. I remember feeling sympathy for every mentally ill person who has ever lived. I understood them and every crazy thing they had ever done... their brain was broken and now mine was too - I was no longer a safe person to be around.

At this point, I still hadn't moved on the bed. I had only drunk a few swallows of juice. And my nurse was getting impatient. I knew I was in trouble when the anesthesiologist came back. It registered that this wasn't normal protocol and that he must of heard that I was crazy. I hoped he had another great drug that could fix this. The first thing he asks is "How are you doing?". I decide to be honest and say, "I just feel so sad." He is short and says, "That is understandable with what you just went through." And I know I said that wrong thing. 

He thinks I am sad about the baby. I have yet to feel anything on that - no, I am sad because I am crazy and the only person besides me that understands that fact is Blake. So I turn from him and hiss to Blake, "I DON'T LIKE HIM." This doesn't do me any favors and he begins to talk over me to Blake, "I have being doing this for 20 years and never had a reaction like this. She has no medicine left in her. She is just sad about what happened and you need to help her get dressed and out of here and maybe she will do better away from the reminders of what just happened." 

I AM LIVID!!! This guy is a professional and I am having a total mental fallout because of the drugs he squirted into my IV and he thinks that I am just sad about the baby. This has nothing to do with the baby - my mind is broken and you are doctor - FIX ME!!! I want to yell this but crazy brain has decided to try and confirm what this jerk just told my husband by forcing me to do nothing but lay there and sob.

Gratefully he leaves and something clicks - I don't want to be here - in order to leave I must get dressed. It takes a monumental effort on my normal brain's part to convince my body to move but finally it happens. I move and my nurse breathes a sigh of relief, "Geez, finally... get this girl out of here so I can move on." I force myself to find a way to get dressed - my mind is completely cloudy and full of dark thoughts but I know my ticket out of here so I am doing what is expected of me. Eventually, I am loaded into a wheelchair and then into my van and all I can think is, "They've released a crazy person - don't they know I should be locked up." My normal brain is functioning enough to tell Blake that he CANNOT leave me alone. That thought has not crossed his mind because out of the three people tending to me, he is the only one who recognizes that something is seriously wrong.

I get home. I lay on the couch for at least 2 hours thinking every awful dark thought I could think. Eventually, the kids come and then visitors and then dinner.  Slowly but surely crazy brain begins to quiet down. I regain the will to live. Then eat. Then truly mourn just what happened.


Pops said...

Thanks for sharing this experience. Your verbal description made me aware of how challenging this was for you - but nothing in that telling compares to the experience you have shared here. Bless you for your strength and your ability to share. Know that you are loved.

Jo said...

Pops said it well.