Friday, April 08, 2005

5# Who Is This Boy?

The next day I again made the trip to the hospital in a mental fog. Worn out physically and emotionally I had to keep telling myself that I could stay strong - that I had to for my son. I didn't take my husband, who was emotionally a wreck from the recent deaths of first his brother and then his nephew - I knew that he would break down and that is not what my son needed. And so my mom drove me - I didn't feel competant just them to drive so far. I will never forget the moment I first walked into that ward. My son met me at the desk with a forced grin, but I didn't know him - that sounds terrible, but although the boy in front of was my son physically - he didn't seem in any other way to be the son I had known for almost seventeen years. His eyes had a vacant, yet haunted look, like the eyes of a wild animal in a closed cage. He began to mutter immediately "Mom get me out of here - I don't belong here - I'm going crazy in here." His voice was low, but somehow forceful - it carried threats of unknown horrors. I tried to comfort telling him that it would only be for a little while and this was where he would get the help he needed. He continued to smile - but his eyes didn't change - my beloved son was nowhere to be seen. Then came the meeting with the social worker - I ended up - despite my best intentions - crying again - I kept repeating "but he was the best of sons, how could this happen?" Intellectually I knew of course that mental illness can strike anyone - that intelligence, a loving family, good friends can not protect you. But still it seemed unreal - in my mind I kept seeing the straight A, quiet, caring perfectionist - it was as if I couldn't except that the wild eyed disturbed boy was truly my own son. After speaking alone for a while the counciler brought in that wild eyed boy and I learned that I hadn't even begun to understand the real terror of that he and now I was dealing with - he told of voices - of a voice commanding him to do things that he knew was wrong - that commanded him to kill himself because he was worthless. My illusion of a deep depression, which could be overcome, began to fade - I became physicall ill - sick at my stomauch and weak - I wanted to run out of there into the sane world outside and never come back . Before I left that day the wild eyed boy told me "Mom, I mean it, get me out - or I'll find a way to kill myself" - I walked out in a fractured haze half believeing that when I got home my real son would be there playing video games and this would have been only a terrible dream ... To be cont.

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