I went for my second therapy session with the doctor today. Is it not sad when the psychiatrist puts words into your mouth? Three different times she asked me if I noticed improvement. Three different times I told her that there was no real noticeable change. She insisted that I was feeling better, even as I sat there on the brink of a major cry session.
Last night, I guess in anticipation of today, the gears in my mind turned almost tirelessly. There was no shutting down. The harder I tried to relax, to fall asleep, the more my thoughts returned to the night that I was shot and all the related stories. I battled with a headache and got up in a somber mood. Thoughts darted through my mind like fireflies in the night. It was a struggle to keep focused.
As I entered the psychiatric clinic, the clerk recognized me by name and asked me to be seated. I was the last person to arrive. As soon as the good doctor arrived, I was the first person called in to see her. I was so grateful for that. I must have spent five minutes with her then I was sent on my way with a prescription for fluxetine for one more month and an appointment in January. In her words, it did not make sense switching to another drug until we had given this one a fair chance.
I left there a bit happy that it was over so early and quickly but a bit disheartened because I felt that I did not get a fair hearing. Just because I am quiet and well dressed with my hair neatly combed and makeup in place and just because I love to smile, does not mean that all is well, all the time. People do not seem to understand how much this incident has affected me. Everyone is different. Perhaps someone else may be completely devastated both physically and mentally, maybe even spiritually. Another person may have handled it even better than I did. That should not minimize my own pain, hurt and mental anguish. Maybe next time I will go without combing my hair and fixing my face!!
If the doctor had given me the opportunity, I could have told her how anxious I had been the morning before. There was no obvious trigger. I got up but did not get out of bed and as I lay there I kept feeling hollowness in my stomach. I wanted to stay in the security of my bed, under my soft, warm purple, fuzzy blanket, hugging my soft, warm purple body pillow, in my purple room. Yes, purple is my favourite colour.
I could have told her how many times I relived the episode that night, how many times I chided myself for being out that night. I could have explained that my head aches a lot and that I think it may be from recent use of my jaws after being wired up for so many months. Or, it could be possibly because of the transfer of kinetic energy from the bullet to my tissues resulting in latent damage, in addition to the obvious damage.
My next major task for the day was a visit to the dentist. Here I was pleasantly surprised by the doctor’s warmth and willingness to share information. So unlike my primary doctor. He indicated that in terms of dental work, all looked well and that the only option at this time is to give myself time for the healing process to occur. After that time has passed, then the two options he presented were the choice of dentures or the choice of bridging. When questioned about implants, he said that he would be unable to do it but that he felt that my doctor would be the best person to deal with that issue. He said that there did not seem to be enough bone for the implants but that since my doctor had done the bone graft, then he would be the best one to determine that possibility.
Somehow the manner in which this dentist discussed my case and the information he provided, left me with an accomplished feeling. There was a little trepidation that he may repeat to my doctor some of what I divulged about my doctor withholding information but it did not diminish the relatively elevated feeling for me.
Later however, as I was returning home, a wave of sadness hit me again, with no obvious trigger. That despair remained for almost the rest of the evening. It was lifted when I went to feed my four dogs, Lucy, Queeny, Stinky and Girly. I felt like myself, my old self, in charge of myself. It was a transient feeling though.
Tonight when a wave of neuropathy hit me, it felt almost literally like a hit, and my cuts were feeling quite sensitive, I started to miss my dear departed father. My dad would have made it all feel better. I know that I am an adult but at low points in my life, I feel like a child again. He would have been all sympathetic and he would have been able to discuss all different aspects of the situation with me. He would have gotten me angry of course, with some poignant questions but in the end it would have all been better.
I know how blessed I am. I am not looking for sympathy. In fact I am trying so very hard to stave off these emotions. I have my faith, I have my God. I know that there is where my strength lies. Yet these dark moments come at me like a battering ram at a castle gate, threatening to tear down all resistance. Why it happens? I do not know. When I am spending time writing or reading the Bible or praying all is well. Whenever I have to venture out of the house, whether for recreation or for a chore, the dark clouds return.
The effect of the “wounding with intent” is far more profound than anyone, who has not had a similar experience, can imagine. There are obvious outcomes. There are insidious, subtle outcomes. There are the physical manifestations. There are mental and emotional scars. There is a spiritual element, which for me draws me closer to my God but which could lean either way for someone else.
I pray for the day when the skies become clear again. When the cobwebs in my brain are lifted and all the crevices are dust free, I will be back to a closer resemblance of myself. I may go out and no longer jump at the slightest distraction. I will not look at everyone with suspicion. This situation has a good outcome though. It is teaching me to trust completely in God, to surrender to myself to Him and to want to know Him more and more intimately.