This patient is awesome. I love her so much and its so funny because when I first met her I was terrified of her, afraid to leave the nurses station in fear that she would attack me. I will call her Jessica.
Before I met Jessica I was told that she had thrown a chair into the wall earlier that day. And they told me that she was sleeping and to be careful not to wake her. I went ahead and started doing my rounds and when I went to check on her she woke up, looked at me and with a cheerful tone said, ” Good Morning!” I said hello back and walked away confused because it was 6:30pm but I didn’t think much of it because I hear stranger things all the time. As it neared time to go out to the patients smoke break I went and asked her if she wanted to go out and smoke, she told me she didn’t want to go out. I went out for smoke break with the other patients and when I returned she was in a full on yelling match with my co-worker. She was yelling that she wanted to go out to smoke break. We told her that she should have gone when we told her about it. This fight went on for over 3 hours. She yelled at us, called us profane names, threw chairs, turned over tables, punched walls and banged her head against the wall. Nothing worked. If we tried talking to her calmly she escalated, if we yelled back, she only got worse. She was scaring the other patients and so eventually my co-worker took her outside to the patio to smoke. She stayed calm for like 20 minutes and then she was back at it again. We finally drew up a shot and I called our male co-workers to come down in case we had to hold her down for it. She surprisingly took it willingly but it didn’t help for awhile.
Even after all the other patients had gone to bed she was up pacing back and forth in the hallways yelling at us. I eventually just said to her, “If you’re not going to go to your room you’re not allowed to talk.” and then when she would try to talk to me I would say, ” No talking, I’m not having this conversation anymore.” When I said that to her she began banging her head against wall. Nothing worked. Nothing.
She was like this for a few days. Then one day I came into work and she was a completely different person. She was still manic but a “nice” manic. It was out of a movie hilarious. She paced up and down hall and instead of yelling obscenities she was yelling positive nice things, such as , ” I am inspired to be a better person.” and a lot of religious things too like, ” My Heavenly Father loves me!” She would follow me around asking for a fist bump as well as smiling at me and giving me a thumbs up and when I would do something for her she would unnecessarily thank me. One time we had a new patient come onto the unit and she ran over to her, hugged her and broke down into tears and began trying to speak in Spanish to them because she thought they were a different country. She was extremely concerned about this person feeling comfortable and welcomed. I had to go and pull her away from her because she was making her uncomfortable. Within minutes Jessica had gone from smiling, being overly happy to crying to then screaming. Being that Jessica has a lot of psychosis she suddenly became angry at me because she thought that I had poisoned the cheese squares that I just given her. I attempted to talk to her but she just screamed for me to get away from her. She didn’t trust me suddenly.
Long story short Jessica was let out shortly after this because they didn’t believe she was a “danger” to herself or others. Somebody had picked her up and on the drive home she escaped from the car, ran away and ended up in a neighboring town. She was found underneath somebody’s porch screaming and when the police asked her what she was doing she reported that she was hiding in a fox hole and that she was a navy seal. This all happened within 1 hour of letting her go. Needless to say she was brought right back to us. We welcomed her back with open arms and when she crawled around on all fours as a navy seal I just smiled.
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