Running a hand through my already messy hair I groan to myself. This is the day that just won’t end.
I started off with four sessions with long-term patients and one group session for the Prozac mommies. I have nothing against Prozac and mothers in general; I’m a mother myself.
What I take issue with is those women who check themselves into my care for the weekend because “the kids drove another nanny off” or “my husband is on yet another business trip leaving me
alone with a tiny human who I can’t handle by myself”. The group sessions are the one part of my job that I despise.
The patients seem to want to one-up each other more than actually discuss the issues that they’re facing.
I got into Psychiatry because I have seen first hand the difference that someone can make just by providing a listening ear.
Yes, there are medications involved and talk therapy is only a piece of what I do but when I was younger talk therapy saved my life.
I experienced things in both my childhood and adulthood that no one should ever have to experience and therapy helped me come to terms with the things that I endured.
When I met my late husband I was in my Undergrad and he was climbing his way up the ladder in the military. He truly took to the Marines and thrived and received promotion after promotion.
He loved serving his country and he loved his family. Or he would have but he was killed in action.
That was when after he gave his life for his country, his country stopped supporting his family. I was left in the lurch and have since had to pick up more shifts than ever before.
My patience was really starting to run out for my patients.
Within the last month I had had three patients threaten me with physical violence. No matter what facility I worked in it seemed like I was treated as a helpless woman.
Once a patient even looked at me in the wrong way management was quick to remove them from my patient list and give them to Adam, who was an imposing bulk of a man.
For some reason it was assumed that my delicate sensibilities couldn’t handle anything violent, hence the Prozac mommies. After all, I could absolutely relate to them. Insert eye roll here.
Being of the shorter than 5 foot my husband had stressed the importance of being able to protect myself at all costs from the very beginning.
He never treated me like a damsel that needed to be rescued he always made sure that he gave me the tools I needed to be my own hero.
He was gone so much that he worried that something would happen to me while he was away. He went with me to get my concealed carry permit.
He made sure I went to the shooting range at least once a week to keep me comfortable with my firearm and he also introduced me to Krav Maga.
I had been doing crossfit for a few years before we met because I knew I was never going to be tall and skinny so I decided that I would hone the body I was born with into a strong
and sturdy one. Bottom line was I was always underestimated because of my size, and if the opportunity ever arose I would be able to make someone seriously regret discounting me.
Shaking my head and taking a deep breath I took at the incoming patient list and blink a few times as one catches my eye. The file simply says “Seven”.
The information on this patient is incredibly limited but something about it seems intriguing.
I briefly start to flip through her file and become absorbed in a file that reads more like the dossier of what my husband would have called a “spook” than that of a woman being admitted to
a mental hospital for court mandated therapy, anger management, and the like.
Glancing at the clock I realize that the patient transport should be arriving any minute and I need to prepare to do an intake interview.
My patient load is lighter than normal and something tells me this one may keep me busy for a while.
I was determined to make a difference with this one, this was one patient that management was not going to send to Adam. They had no idea who I really am, and dammit I was going to show them.
I smoothed my hair back into a more presentable ponytail and walked down to intake to get started on this new patient.
As I walked down the hall I heard what sounded like a scuffle, frowning I made my way into patient intake and stopped in my tracks.
The woman I was presuming was Seven even though she barely resembled the picture that was attached to her file was fighting off all 4 of the security guards who were escorting her in.
She was about to free herself when I sprang into action.
I rushed over gripping her elbow using it as a pivot point to push her face first into the nearest table and throw all of my weight onto to hold her in place.
She is incredibly skilled mixed with scrappy and it is taking everything I have to keep her plastered to the table waiting for backup to arrive with a sedative.
Once we get Seven settled in her room with restraints to keep everyone safe, including her, I head back to my office to delve into her file.
Seeing how hard she was fighting I can tell that there is a lot beneath the surface of this woman and it is going to be anything but easy to help her.
A few hours later I have Seven’s file scattered all across my desk, I wasn’t over exaggerating when I said her file read more like a dossier.
Her diagnosis list is as long as my arm; Narcissistic Personality, Paranoid/Delusional, expert manipulator, PTSD, self harming,
and the most concerning for me was that she is a danger to another.
Not that I was afraid I couldn’t handle myself but that management would see this and once again determine that I’m too delicate to handler her treatment.
I’ll be damned if this patient get swiped from me, I think she needs me. I had a feeling that, out of anyone in this hospital, I was the one who was going to be able to help her.
Getting through her entire file feels like it is taking it all out of me.
I need to go and check in with her before heading home to my son but I just know it is going to take whatever I have left in the tank today.
I know I need to be on my game when I talk to her, I know she’s going to be manipulative and combative but I can only hope that she’ll see that I can help her. That I want her to get better.
I knock softly before entering a very plain light blue room. The hospital is overrun with what I like to call the “passive aggressive” blue.
It’s a really dull light blue that really does nothing for calming thoughts. She looks incredibly frail and small and nothing like the woman who took out of our intake security on her own.
Her wrists are secured to the bed railings and her ankles are secured together and then to the footboard of the hospital bed.
I hated that we had to leave her restrained but I had no idea how she was going to act coming out of the sedatives.
It was for her safety and mine because I am positive that I would never been able to restrain her alone without the element of surprise.
“Good afternoon Seven, my name is Dr. Henley Robbins.”
(continued in part 2)