The Smoke Signal

‘The inpatient facility had woken me up’

PV senior explains the impact of the inpatient facility on her life and the beginning of attending a treatment center. This is the fifth of an eight part series.

Julia Fiskin

PV senior explains the impact of the inpatient facility on her life and the beginning of attending a treatment center. This is the fifth of an eight part series.

Kayla Barry, Assistant Editor in Chief

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Editor’s Note: Kayla’s Korner will be a reoccurring column that deals with mental health and teenage issues. This is the fifth of an eight part story.  

I was in the inpatient facility for five days. I was smiling my whole discharge day.

When it is your discharge day, you never know what time you will be leaving. So, the day of my discharge, I was just waiting for someone to get there to pick me up.

The girl that I shared a room with the first night that I was friends with left towards the morning. I was sad to see her leave. I gave her a big hug and wished her luck as she would be going to college in the fall.

This happened a few more times throughout the day since many people were leaving the same day I was. I was one of the last people to leave.

As the numbers started dwindling down, I was getting more and more excited to get out of this place.

The inpatient facility had woken me up from everything. It punched me in the gut and made me realize that I needed to take a better hold on myself and on my life. It made me realize that getting help was not that bad at all. It was actually what I really needed.

Going to the inpatient facility was the best decision I had ever made. It sounds cheesy, but it was a weird place that made me realize that I never wanted to go back to it ever again.

Although I was excited to leave, I was also scared.

I knew I was getting better, but I did not know what would happen when I went back to my house, when I went back to my life. Would I start becoming suicidal again? Would I stoop so low again and actually do what I planned to? Would I actually kill myself?

I honestly did not know what I was capable of. I just knew that I would have to take it a day at a time.

Would I get suicidal thoughts again? Honestly, I probably would. But now, I knew that it was okay to have them and I knew how to help distract myself from them.

The inpatient facility also taught me that I was really never alone. There were always people to talk to and patients going through similar situations. It really helped to see that there were others out there.

I have always felt in a bubble at Pascack Valley. No one really talks about mental health, let alone suicide. But at the inpatient facility, I felt like I could talk about what I was truly feeling.

I could never do that home or with my friends. I always thought that they would judge me, but here, there was no reason for judgement.

I was discharged around dinner time. I got the call that my dad was here and as I got up, I looked around. I was in the living room at the time, and I just smiled to all the people around me.

As I stood up, everyone circled around me. They each gave me hugs and wished me luck. I made sure I went to where the younger ones were and said goodbye to each of them. I had really bonded with a few of them.

And that was it. I was let out of the locked doors and back into the real world. My dad and twin sister were waiting for me. They each gave me big hugs and I cannot even really explain what I was feeling.

My dad signed paperwork and I got all my stuff which was in a large, brown paper bag and we walked through the halls of the facility.

When we finally made it to the door, I stopped and looked outside. I had not really been outside for the last five days – it seemed foreign to me. As I stepped outside, I could feel the warm breeze on my face since it had been freezing in the inpatient facility. I had to sleep with three blankets each night, so it being hot outside was so strange.

I did not really talk on the way home as I was just looking out the window. When I was in the ambulance, I could not really see where I was going so it was nice to actually see where I was.

When I made it home, I collapsed on the couch. My dog jumped on me and licked my face a countless amount of times.

It was different while I was home. There were knives and razors that I could use to hurt myself. And I had to keep my door open at all times. For the first few days, I was home, someone had to always be in the room with me.

I hated it, but I just had to deal with it.

A few days after my discharge, I went to the High Focus facility for my evaluation. It took about an hour. I just talked about what brought me to the hospital and my feelings.

Eventually, the clinician that I met with said that I could start at High Focus the following day.

I refused. I wanted to start on the Monday instead of a Friday. Honestly, I was just terrified of going into another place as the new girl. I was scared of meeting new people and just being in a new atmosphere once again.

He agreed that I could start that Monday.

Coming next: Kayla talks about a day in High Focus.

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About the Writer
Kayla Barry, Assistant Editor in Chief

Kayla Barry is a senior and has been on The Smoke Signal for four years. This year, she is the Assistant Editor in Chief. She is looking forward to working with everyone and making this year a success!

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “‘The inpatient facility had woken me up’”

  1. Julia on October 29th, 2018 4:10 pm

    Kayla! I’m so incredibly proud of how far you’ve come and I’m so happy that I am a part of your life. Thanks for giving me the honor of having the picture I took of you as the cover of your amazing story! I LOVE YOU and keep being you 🙂

  2. Melissa Weathets on October 29th, 2018 9:09 pm

    You are brave. Your natural, honest writing pulls me in and I look forward to reading more.

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‘The inpatient facility had woken me up’