I couldn't shake the feeling that I was being held captive, that I was a prisoner on the ward and that I couldn't be the mother I wanted to be while I had all these wardens watching my every move. In actuality I was there completely of my own free will and I was a patient. The staff were doing everything they could to help me learn how to nurture and care for my son in the midst of this shocking disease. Its amazing what time can do to shift you perspective, but at that time I was imprisoned and I had been granted a whole, glorious days release.
The reason I had negotiated this days leave was because my son was within one day of missing his birth registration and, as his parents, we could face prosecution for failing to register him on time. I was totally oblivious to all of this, which is another indicator of how unwell I had become, because anyone that knows me knows that lists, organisation and deadlines are completely my thing!
Because we were in Hackney he could be registered in London and as my husband was staying with our urban mum in Brixton then Lambeth Town Hall it was. What was beautiful about this chance detail was that it was where my husband and I had registered our marriage just 3 years before. Psychosis had done it again, or we had, it all seemed to make some weird, twisted, crooked sense.
We sat in the waiting room with all the other babies that were brand new and held our son in his special St. Patricks Day romper suit that was yet another act of generosity for his urban nanna. It was official. He existed. He was named. He was registered.
We took him to all our old haunts, independent coffee shops and markets. It was such normality, so ordinary. I looked like everyone else. No-one knew what was going on in my mind, just like I didn't know what was going on in theirs. We were a family.
This was a taste of the freedom I was so scared of and yet longed for.
We walked through the park. I really saw my son, for one of the first times in weeks. Outside of the ward, where I was just getting through the day, there was time to look, really look at what was going on around me.
To see him see trees for the first time was incredible. Even his face displayed wonder. He's actually still besotted with trees 7 months on.
Having that day with my family really helped me to get some perspective on my situation. My mindset changed almost in an instant. I was free. I have always been free. Feeling like I'm being held hostage is the illness not the hospital. I was fighting it. Not only that, but was winning.
That feeling lasted until I pressed the security button on the ward doors, to pass security and went back into my home, my cell.
Love and wise old oaks,
Mutha Courage X