Okay, I’m not horny right now…based on my previous late night post.
From getting into a matatu and alighting at the institution, it felt surreal. I kept thinking of the men and women with whom I was admitted with. The tall kind one who loved watching television and knew when certain shows would be on, the constantly drugged guy under detoxification who wore sneakers and shorts every day, Pinky, the very confused etc. I could feel that numbness I had when I was told I had to be admitted. I thought being admitted would help me.
I remembered the waiting hours when I’d be visited. What time would my mother show up at the door? I’m not drugged enough to sleep till she arrives. Would my friends show up today? What time? It’s already 3pm. My cousin always visited me. He would come with a bouquet of flowers then leave for work. The goodbyes at the end of the day was always the hardest. As a person struggling with loneliness, waiting for people and seeing them leaving each time did not do well for my anxiety.
I was the only suicidal one. When the patients were being detoxified or treated for other mental illnesses, I felt fine. I felt normal. I was not like them. They shook their heads when they learnt I was admitted because of suicide attempts. I could not relate to anyone. There was someone else with bipolar but he was rather annoying.
I remember being asked if my cousin could sneak in cigarettes. The person asking was so medicated that white foam was on his lips, he smelt like a dispensary and his eyes were barely open. He was a banker, good guy. I wondered how he felt having that drip on his arm every day. I saw a lot of boobs, yeah. Butts too.
Days were very long if I was not drugged enough, if I didn’t have a counseling session or playing badminton. Playing badminton was my favorite thing to do. I was one of the more ‘sober’ ones and finding another sober player was quite tricky. The annoying guy used to play with me mostly. Well I found him annoying cause he thought he could rap.
I remembered how some patients would wait patiently for a visitor to be opened for the gate and try to sneak out as if the guard would not identify them. It was quite hilarious but very relatable. Everyday I would look through the gate when it was being opened and closed and that glimpse of the outside world made me wish to run away. I’m in a fucking mental institution! How did I end up here?!
The kindness of the nurses was so good. That was one place I did not feel judged or questioned about my suicide. How they took care of me after my Electroconvulsion therapy was pleasing. Everyone from the janitor to the cooks were sweet and friendly and were constantly available to listen to how you think you shouldn’t be admitted there. How normal you were.
Do I want to be admitted again? Hell no.