I’m on weekend leave from the ward, as an informal patient I can leave when I want but I just have to let staff know instead of going AWOL. These are the notes I took of my experience on the ward while I was there. I will be returning to the ward tomorrow
Morning: I had a blood test and ECG, the doctor seemed concerned about my heart. The night before, when I arrived, I had to have my blood pressure and heart rate checked before discussing some of my history with a doctor.
Afternoon: My mum came to visit with my stuff since all I had on me was my phone and the pyjamas I was wearing when I arrived. My suitcase had to be locked away until some members of staff could search it.
I really wanted to have a shower because I felt gross unfortunately I had to wait a few hours for my luggage to be searched, the wait was frustrating but when I finally got my stuff (the bits I was allowed to have, the rest was locked away) and had a shower, it felt amazing.
We had a meeting to discuss the ward and how we could improve things. During the meeting fellow patients expressed grievances they had with the staff which I found relatable. Despite anxiety I did speak up.
Evening/Night: I went to the shops across from the hospital with other patients on leave. Missed dinner because of this but a nurse gave me a sandwich to last me until supper.
I was getting worked up from anxiety to the point that I became quite manic, I worked it off by shooting some hoops for a while (turns out I’m quite good at basketball)
Late at night anxiety and home sickness became too much for me, I started crying. I had to leave my room to take my medication though so people could see my red eyes and tell I’d been crying which I was terrified of. I received comfort from patients and staff though instead of being teased like how I used to.
When I finally settled down to sleep I started hallucinating, the leaves in front of my window took on the shapes and movements of people (its hard to explain) I think it was the Zopiclone I was given instead of melatonin because the ward had none in stock.
Morning: After breakfast I went into the garden to lie on the grass and watch the clouds (like they do in movies) while listening to the radio through my headphones. I felt so peaceful.
Afternoon: I created mosaics with the Occupational Therapist, I had a clever idea but felt annoyed because it didn’t turn out how I imagined it (its still at the hospital)
I had a visit from my mum. I decided to go on leave with her for a couple of hours.
Had nasty chest pains from anxiety, I told a member of staff and they immediately checked my vitals.
Evening/night: One of the patients was being verbally aggressive to me, other patients and staff. I got really upset and felt suicidal to the point that I tried to figure out how to kill myself on the ward. It resulted in me getting more of my items taken and locked away by staff.
So those are the first two days of my time on the ward. I’m honestly getting fed up of typing so I will do day three and four in a separate post later on. Thank you for reading and I hope this post has given you some insight into life on a psychiatric ward.
There are two types of patients on the Psych Ward. Those that want to leave but are forced to stay and those that want to stay but are forced to leave.