TRIGGER WARNING ⚠️ this post deals with mental health issues: anxiety, depression, eating disorder, body dysmorphia, self harm, suicidal thoughts and hospitalization.
On Friday, May 4th, I started out my day feeling pretty ok. Nothing out of the ordinary, really. Soon after waking I began to feel pretty bad. Feelings of self hate. Hate towards my body, hate towards my life choices and feelings of wishing I was not alive any more. Now, I’ve dealt with depression most of my life off and on. I have had longer periods of well being in between but mostly I know about that life. Turns out, wishing you weren’t alive… yeah those are suicidal tendencies, come to find out. I thought I was different since I didn’t have a plan on how to kill myself etc. Nope, it’s all a slippery slope.
As Khloe played in the backyard I sat at the kitchen table completely overwhelmed by my thoughts. My thoughts can be a vicious cycle of going back and forth about things. Did I do this right? Was this the right choice? Am I a good mom? She’d be better off without me here. They’d all be better off without me here. Did I say that correctly? Are they doing to misunderstand what I meant or who I really am? Why didn’t I get chosen for this or that. What is wrong with me? Why am I so fat?
In that moment I couldn’t take it anymore. I knew I needed to get myself out of this moment and so I googled a mental health care facility that a person close to me had recently been to. I messaged my husband and told him I felt I needed to go check myself in. I was literally out of my mind.
Once I called this place the intake specialist advised me that because of the insurance I had, that I had to start with the Colorado Crisis line. WHAT??? I’m asking you for help in the middle of a breakdown with suicidal tendencies and you’re telling me, after workin up the courage to reach out, that I now have to call someone else. This was too much work. It’s not worth it. I don’t really need this help…. there are people more sick than I making it through. STOP! I persisted and I then googled the Colorado Crisis line. They had the option to text for help and that was right up my ally since I now was no longer committed to doing anything but I figured I could get my toe wet by texting someone for help. Once the chat started I began describing the things I was going through and thinking. Look, I’m not stupid. I know what leading questions look like when a therapist is digging for answers. I was mildly annoyed and frustrated but I’ll be honest, she was doing her job and it helped me get to the next point.
I paced my house for about an hour, managed to make Khloe a sandwich for lunch and sit on my bed. By then my husband had come home. As I sat there I decided to just go. I was going to drive myself to the crisis center and ask for help. I left my house without telling my husband. As I drove there it felt surreal. Nothing was moving quickly but at the same time I arrived very quickly. Dear God please let this go smoothly, I can’t afford for this to be any harder than it already is. I was ready to leave already.
I walked in the door and the waiting room looked like a regular waiting room to a doctors office. It was quiet and there were 2 people sitting there. I approached the window and told the lady I needed to talk to someone. Without skipping a beat she asked me for my license and insurance and then handed me a STACK of papers I had to fill out. Ugh. Why is it so hard to get help? Can’t someone just help me without all this extra bull shit? I know, I know… liabilities and such. They need a paper trail but in my state of mind I was happy just to have made it there and now I had to pull it together enough to fill out this STACK of papers. I sat there staring at the papers for what seemed to be an eternity. I was toying with the idea of just walking out and not dealing with this. I’m ok, I am not THAT sick…. others have it way worse. Again, invalidating myself and what I was going through. I’m not a looney.
I started in on the paperwork. Numerous times in this paperwork process I wanted to still leave but I kept filling it out. Finally I finished and handed it back to the lady just to be told that the wait was really long. HOW LONG? OH MY GOD why is this such a process? No wonder people slip through the cracks. She advised me at least an hour wait. I sat back down debating on leaving once again. Invalidating myself, once again. Searching for any reason not to stay but I stayed.
While in the waiting room a young 14 year old boy was waiting to be placed in a stabilization unit for self harm and suicide attempt. I felt sadness. I knew how he felt. I wanted to hug him but I just listened as his grandfather made him feel like shit for doing what he did. This grandfather went on and on not even taking a breath in telling this kid he was wrong and that “Jesus” is here for him. Look, I’m all for Jesus and whatever helps you get through but making a kid feel bad and then throwing Jesus into that is NOT going to make him want to reach out to Jesus. It will do the opposite. I almost couldn’t take sitting there any longer. What an awful person and I just felt so sad for the boy, praying that he would find the strength within to look past his grandpas words. Ugh. Barf!
FINALLY, after about an hour I was escorted to the back to talk with an intake therapist. They ask the typical questions you’d ask someone with self harm thoughts, depression and anxiety. I answered every single question honestly. I left nothing hidden. I had nothing to hide at this point. I was desperate. I cried…. A LOT. I didn’t care. Once we were done talking she advised me that she wasn’t going to put me in a mandatory 72 hold but that the services were still available if I’d like them. I was on the edge of it being mandatory. She said she’d have to check what they had for pregnant women and if there was room for me. I looked at her and said, ” I know there are people out there with bigger issues than I that could use this bed but I am at a point where I am going to say yes, please help me, please let me stay here!” She didn’t judge me. She was encouraging and was supportive.
She began the process of getting me a bed. We were hoping I didn’t have to go to another facility but I told her I was willing to take myself wherever.
I waited in the waiting room for about another hour and a half. The same young boy was also waiting but this time it was a supportive aunt that was with him and I was relieved for him. It made me feel better knowing he at least had some proper support.
As I waited I told my husband where I was. I got a friend to cover my shifts at work and texted just a few friends to tell them what I was doing. I knew they’d take my phone once admitted so I wanted to cover all bases as I didn’t know what was in store. All I knew was I was finally reaching out for help and I had a sense of relief about me.
After another long wait a nurse came out and got me. I had been accepted to be admitted to the on site facility for 3-5 days. Signing myself in and giving consent to treat. I was finally…. finally getting help.
** I’m going to make this series a few entires. There is so much to cover and I don’t want to miss anything by whipping through my thoughts. I’ll continue more later**
• IF YOU OR ANYONE YOU KNOW IS IN CRISIS, THERE US NO SHAME IS ASKING FOR HELP. The Colorado Crisis like is: 1-844-493-8255 or text , “TALK” to 38255. This is a 24/7 line and open to anyone. Colorado Crisis Services.
• Suicide Prevention line: 1-800-273-8255 and they’re also 24/7. Suicide prevention website .