Well it’s been a long time. And I must say I do feel better albeit “woozy”. So it’s weird being out of “intervention”. I am not sorry I went but now it seems like all the coping skills I had don’t work (of course they stopped working anyway which is why I needed intervention).
It wasn’t necessarily a cry for help. It was a request. I knew I was getting to a point where life no longer looked good to me. So intensive outpatient for me, I went.
It was hard to be there. I was surrounded by all these people. The very first day, within 20 minutes, I was thrust into “group”. This is where you fill out a sheet that explains what you are thinking and feeling. It gave you a direction for goals that day. My first sheet: 3 emotions: nervous frustrated and anxious. It was very hard to be there. One of the student nurses for the day actually knew me. She attends our church. Her daughter is also Autistic. We both looked at each other with a quiet “knowing”.
It was my job while I was there to figure out how I had gotten to this point. That was an easy task. I have what the psychiatry peeps call “excessive caregiver strain”. Duh!
I spent hours talking to the staff about my life and my family. You know you have a complicated life when you can make 2 social workers cry just by telling your story. The psychiatrist was surprised that he hadn’t met me sooner. He told me I would be in antidepressants and have to attend therapy probably for the rest of my life. Everyone that I talked to told me, “There is nothing we can do for you or resources we can offer you. You are already doing everything right, everything you can. Sometimes things just turn out that way.”
And that was where I truly lost hope. I sat in a dark corner and cried. For hours. I felt as if there was nothing I could offer my children. That I had failed. And I hate failing. But I tried. I worked hard. There was no respite, or break, or even sleep for the past 8 or 9 months for myself and WH. WKD was backtracking; no signing and his speech was fading. WKG was supposed to have respite and a personal care attendant by now (PCA).
It was there, in the hospital for the terminally depressed, that I learned that my visit could have all been avoided. My son, WKG, had been awarded the Autism Waiver, a $22,000 grant, just 2 months before. He would be awarded the grant every year until he turns 18. The grant covers respite, a PCA, and a behavior therapist, along with anything else WKG would need. The man who was supposed to implement the plan wasn’t doing his job. If he had, all of those things that would help me and my family keep our sanity would have been in place. At least the drugs here kick ass!
The PCA has started working with WKG every Saturday. We also have a behavioral plan in place from a qualified Behavior Therapist that knows WKG well. I already see a difference. WH is more confident and less stressed. I am “allowed” J to express my feelings. And once again, there is therapy through the eyeballs for the rest of the family. It’s getting better.
What else can I say? Besides that it took me to almost end my life to get shit done around here. Oh, well….live and let live.