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Thursday, August 11, 2011

And it Keeps on Turning


August 11, 2011 - Thursday


This is a continuation of sorts.  To start at the beginning, click here.

I worked on Tuesday and Wednesday, long days filled with admitting and losing patients.  I have been too exhausted to write after work, even though this piece should have been written last night.
The call came soon after I got home Tuesday night, while I was sitting on the deck having a drink and watching the dogs play.  
“Mama?  I just wanted to let you know I am in the hospital again, on the psych floor.  I had suicidal thoughts last night, and I thought I should come to the hospital.  Don’t worry.  I am okay.”
Okay?  Really
This is three hospitalizations in one week, but Parrish just wants me to know he is all right.  He would not describe his feelings, just said that he felt like killing himself so he went to hospital.  As usual, I asked him to have his doctor call me and tell me what he thinks.  Parrish said he would, but the call never came.
He said he would be there for a few days for observation, that he had a new doctor because he as tired of his old one changing his meds all the time.  I asked how he was feeling at that moment.
“I don’t know how I feel.  I’m tired of the goddamned illness, but as you know, Mama, it is a progressive condition, and I will never get better, only worse.”
Try to be me for a minute, sitting down at last after a 13 hour day that left me little time for anything but going to the bathroom a couple of times.  I’ve taken a long pull off my drink, have a cigarette going, my feet up on the other chair, relaxed or almost so. 

And the fucking phone rings. 


And it’s Parrish with more bad news, delivering it in his usual passive-agressive manner.  What in the name of God am I supposed to do with this news?  My muscles, which have begun to relax, tense up, and my neck begins to ache.  Good job, P, you have achieved your goal.  I am officially depressed and anxious and furious all at the same time.  Good for you.  The stock market is in the toilet and I am hemorrhaging money, and now I get to worry about you, too.
Great.
We talk for a few minutes, or rather, he talks and I listen.  He is too far away from me.  I am all he has in the world.  It’s no wonder he wants to kill himself, he feels so isolated in the dump where he lives........
I praise him for having the good judgement to go to hospital, encourage him to stay as long as he needs to be there, ask for a phone call from his doctor.  Rather than tell him how distressed and worried I am, I stress how proud I am of his willingness to get the help he needs.  
Disappointment in his voice, he tells me he will call me on Wednesday night.  
The call did not come last night, and I was relieved.  Yes, relieved.  I was too exhausted to deal with more of his blather, knowing he was trying to get me to fly down to Miami or suggest that he come back home, or at least to Atlanta. 
(Update.  He has pushed his move to Atlanta back a month to October). 
There is nothing else to say.  I’m out of words, out of sorts and nearly out of patience.  
Later - 4:30 PM
Before I could publish this post, I ran out of time and had to go to the doctor - routine; I’m healthy.  
I was waiting in the exam room at around 1:30, and my fucking cell phone rang.
“Mama?  First of all, I am out of the hospital, but I have some bad news.  You better sit down.”
“I’m already seated.  What is it, son?”
“I have hepatitis C.”
Long pause.
“Well, we already knew that.  You told me several years ago that you have Hep C.  I told you to stay away from alcohol and drugs and to follow your doctor’s instructions.”
Long pause
A disappointed, “I didn’t realize I had told you.”
“What did the doctor recommend?”
“He said to stay away from booze and street drugs and I would be okay.”
It is no small wonder that I get up every morning and look to the sky and say, “It isn't my turn.”





12 comments:

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Damn! They do know the buttons to push don't they. I feel your exhaustion and your despair! I am sending you strength! Hang in there my friend.

Dazee Dreamer said...

oh man. I work with a guy that has hep c. He still smokes, and drinks and does drugs. He is like 5 years younger than me and looks 15 years older. I feel sorry for him but only to an extent. I've talked to him till I'm blue in the face. Until they want to get better, they won't.

I am so sorry for you. Just know there are those of us out here that have you in our thoughts.

Viki said...

I'm so sorry. Between your job and your son, my heart breaks for you.

Amanda said...

Ouch. I was looking forward to my son growing up in hopes of things getting easier, but now I'm not so sure.

I'm sorry you have to go through this CJ.

Sue said...

Being the mother of an adult child with a dual diagnosis has to be one of the hardest experiences ever. Most times, the only thing you can do is pray the blessings his way.

And I will be praying some your way, too.

Hugs.

Domestic and Damned said...

Damn! Its about the only thing that is coming to my mind. My strength to you right now.

BECKY said...

CJ, I know it's cliche to say you've had more than your fair share of sadness, grief, disappointment, etc...but you really have! I send hugs to you.

ayala said...

Sorry...I hope things get better. Prayers sent your way.

melgallant said...

CJ,

Sometimes family sucks everything good thing out of you. This I know. I'm glad you shared your disappointment, although I'm definitely not glad you're experiencing it.

I'll leave with a trite 'hang in there.' Sending positivity your way. Lots of it.

Martha Mawson said...

Don't know what to say other than sending a really big hug from me to you. (We are about to move to a place that has a guestroom. Welcome mat is always out!)

Katie Gates said...

Oh, cj. I'm so sorry you have to go through this. My thoughts are with you. I hope there is soon a different "turn" in the stuff that keeps on turning.

deborahjbarker said...

I can relate to that feeling of relief when the call does not come. It's like a reprieve, just for a while. I wish you the strength to carry on and to say 'no' when you must. My grandmother used to smile when things got too bad and say,
"It'll all be the same in a hundred years," well, clearly not everything will be but the sentiment is good. One day we'll wonder why we worried and of course, one day we wont worry. Oh dear, here I go down a path that always makes me take a deep breath and come running back! You are not yet ready to throw in the towel either :-) Take care x