St Benedicts (life on the inside)

I was one of those people who had been in hospital twice. Once to be born and once to give birth. And I really liked it that way. It was a catchy phrase at the very least. And then I found myself in a private psychiatric hospital crying over my dinner. I wondered how I ended up there in the first place (see my post called In the beginning). The one-two combo punch of  Postnatal Depression and postpartum thyroiditis had sent me tumbling over the edge of reality. And that’s why I went St. John of God’s hospital St Benedicts Unit.

With the benefit of hindsight I can see that it was the best place for me to be though I didn’t exactly enjoy it at the time. I had nurses available 24 hours a day so when I really couldn’t do crying babies anymore there was someone to turn to. I know many mums who would pay big dollars for that. There were counselling and group sessions available too. I was introduced to attachment theory and the amazing bond that happens between mothers and babies. I observed a lot of mums and it helped me to see two things very clearly:

  1. The earlier you get help the better off you’ll be in the long run
  2. I had a great opportunity to learn about myself and how to be a great mum

I did experience some very funny moments too. Like the time when one of the geriatric patients tried to assess my progress. She was kindly escorted away by the nurses. Or the time that the adolescents had a screaming match in the dining room during a “trash and treasure” sale. This was a hairy experience as we were surrounded by crystal vases and ceramic breakable things! Or my dear friend who liked to pretend that she was really there as a researcher not as a patient. Probably the best memory was the lady who over-shared with us that she had tried an anti-depressant but stopped using it when she found she couldn’t climax… Awkward. Look busy.

Tomorrow I’ll talk about steps I took to getting and staying well.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. upcycleblog
    Nov 22, 2012 @ 11:54:30

    Thanks for being so candid about your experience. It supports everyone who has suffered from depression of any kind and encourages them to be open about it which is part of the battle in processing what is happening to them. So here goes, I haven’t been in hospital for it but I have experienced depression and yes, seeking help was the answer. Interestingly depression seems to be my way of waking myself up to changing my life as I need it to be. I have managed to make those changes, having sought help to clear my mind to see the way forward – YAY!


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