The room was completely silent aside from her breathing. I was awake slightly trying to get back to sleep. Apparently something woke me up at this hour, because I was extremely tired from the weekend.
Her breathing seemed odd, almost labored, and I could hear a moan every now and again. Despite her sleeping habits, talking, moaning, breathing heavy, this seemed different.
I reached over and touched her shoulder, wondering if it was just me or should I try to wake her. When I heard another moan I gave her a quick shake to see if everything was ok. She stirred slightly but did not waken completely.
I shook her again, and again she did not respond very well. At this point I knew something was wrong and I got up and turned on the light. I called her name slightly louder at this point and got back on the bed to shake her awake. She opened her eyes and looked up at me and looking at her eyes I could see the emptiness.
Fearing the worst, that she decided to finish off her medications a month early I went in to wake my daughter to prepare for a trip to the emergency room. As I did so my wife tried to get herself off of the bed, but being under the influence of countless pills she toppled over falling into the armoire that we have as our entertainment center. The top fell into the wall and almost was knocked to the ground.
Then I heard the words that brought tears to my eyes. "What is wrong with Mommy? Help her Daddy, please." My daughter had walked into the room and saw the scene unfold. Being four she had no idea what was really going on and was scared to see her mom in this state.
I did the best I could to straighten my wife up and grab my daughter to give her a hug. Anger, fear and sadness overwhelmed me. I quickly got dressed, and I helped my wife out of the house and into the car. Thinking back I probably should have called the ambulance but half awake and the hospital being a five minute drive from my house, I made the decision to drive her myself.
Arriving at the ER, I went in first to grab a nurse to help me get her in the door. This was not the first time I brought her to the ER for an overdose, but it was the first time in this city.
The nurses quickly helped her out of the car and rushed her back to a room. I parked my vehicle grabbed my daughter and headed back in to deal with all the paperwork I knew that was being prepared for me. Thats the funny thing, my wife could be dying and I wanted to be by her side, but all the hospital cared about from me was how was I going to pay for tonights visit.
After about a half hour of paperwork and forms one of the nurses came to get me to show my back. She informed me that my wife was stable and she had a list of medications she had taken. She asked me if there was anything else that I may have noticed. I had no idea is what I told her and looked incredulously at the list she presented.
Having finally fed her enough charcoal and had her stabilized they let me see her. When I walked in she looked up at me with those sad eyes she has and told me sorry. I smiled and grabbed her shoulder and replied that it was ok. I did not bring my daughter back with me this time, the nurse at the front said they would watch her.
The hospital brought in a mental health professional and after a few hours of talking they decided to check her into a facility to help her get better. I signed the paperwork, told my wife that I would return with clothes and left with my daughter.
The sun was just starting to come up at this point and I sat for a second at the exit of the hospital with my daughter in my arms and breathed deeply. I had no idea what the days or weeks ahead would hold. I had been here before a few times but I had only lived in this city for less than six months. My support network was non-existent although I am thankful for my neighbor at the time.
That was not the first time that I had to deal with that situation. My wife indicates that it is always 'A cry out for help,' and never to try to commit suicide, but I often wonder with the right combinations would she have succeeded.
I think about my daughter in those times mostly. I will recover, I am strong, but I have no idea what would happen if I had to explain this to her.
A few hours later, my wife off to the mental health facility, my daughter in day care and myself getting prepared for work, I sat on the edge of the bed, half dressed, and cried.