We visited Mom at the end of last week. Hubby and I had a rare day off together so we packed Peanut and the dvd player into the car and made the 3 hour drive to the state hospital. Mom was happy to see us, as we were happy to see her.
She's crazy. There's really no other way to say it. I've never seen her like this before. She's paranoid (although some of it probably is for good reason as her clothes and other items regularly go missing). Her glasses were recovered, but her watch and dentures are long gone. She's convinced the nurses, staff, and other patients hate her. Who knows? Some of the staff probably are Nurse Ratched types, while others are probably OK. She also thinks she's possessed. She's still doing the weird gasping/breathing thing which started after she was transferred. When she hyperventillates, they put her in time out. According to the psychiatrist, the breathing thing is a manifestation of anxiety (which I had already assumed) and she feels that Mom can't control it. I'm not sure that punishing her with time outs is the best way to deal with it, but her gasping disturbs the other patients when they are in class or group therapy. She said she's only been outside a couple of times in the 6 weeks she's been there. She's only allowed off the unit with a staff member and they're chronically understaffed. That angered me. Even at our local hospital, there was a secure courtyard that all patients had access to at least once a day.
She's still convinced that she'll be in the hospital forever. At this point, I'm feeling that way, too.