I May Look Fine On The Outside, But A Lot Of People Don’t Understand What Goes On In My Mind

Anxiety Mind Mental Health
Noah Silliman

The hospital was always a place that has been near to my heart in my life. It is a place that I had to and wished to spend all my nights.

My sister, Sarah, wrote a story about how she wondered why I had to go see a psychologist every week during high school. She explained why she couldn’t understand. I was curious the way Sarah thought. She became interested in my mood and medicine ranging from Zooloft to Ambilify to Xanax to Prozac.

In the Summer of 2014, I spent my free time with my favorite author, Alice LaPlante, who was once my writing instructor. She was kind enough to autograph her best-selling novel, Turn of Mind. It was a very interesting read. Yet one of my favorite authors is Elizabeth Wurtzel. She wrote the memoir, Prozac Nation. Elizabeth Wurtzel graduated from Harvard and Yale Law School yet her struggle with depression is intriguing. It fascinates me. She describes her life as it really was. I agree. I wish all my pain would amount to something. Her book inspires me.

August 8 is my mother’s birthday. My dad drove me that night to the hospital in 2014. I had come home from attending a summer class at Stanford University. I had decided to take a French class for my foreign language credit. It was a very long process to be approved to study at an institution elsewhere. It was almost like a dream to me because it was too good to be true.

My dad took me to the emergency room of St. Joseph’s Hospital. Then, the nurses pushed me in a wheelchair. I got Baker-Acted. In the night, it was very dark outside. The nurses told me to change into a patient gown. Then, I stayed in the waiting room all night pacing and trying to call my dad on a payphone.

I didn’t get any sleep. I sat by the window alone and saw the sunrise in the morning. I saw a girl with blonde hair sitting down in the room. She was patient and calm unlike me. My nerves were racing and my anxiety was terribly high. I spoke with the psychiatrist. After, I asked if I could call my parents and they said, “no.” Instead, I had to write a hand-written letter to my parents that they wouldn’t be able to receive.

People look perfectly fine on the outside, but you never realize that their problems are often a lot greater than yours. In the summer of 2014, I was raped. I was sexually assaulted and abused by someone who I honestly do not know at all. The rape incident caused both significant damage to my health and impacted me in a negative way.

I take my health very seriously. My father has always paid for my medical services. He is a scientist and biology professor who has been doing cancer research for years. You could imagine all of the trouble a medical bill from the hospital might be. I spoke with RAINN’s Sexual Assault online chat and I explained to them that the bill for my hospital stay concerning that physical damage done to my body and mental health is expensive. It is terrible that my parent had to pay for someone else’s harm and physical damage done to my body. My body did hurt early on, evident by the significant amount of blood released. It is the worst possible case because I was in such bad condition that I had to go to the emergency room of St. Joseph’s Hospital. The medical doctor prescribed me with medicine for my urinary infection and my mental health.

I decided to read my Bible. I believe in God. I mindfully kept my religious faith. My personal belief is that sin ruins all lives and associated with death. One of the passages that stood out to me was ‘The Lord is my Shepherd.’ I shall not want. I had nothing at the hospital. I prayed to God for strength and guidance. I was miserable.

Once, I sat with the blonde girl and we colored together with crayons on a table. Her name was Katrina. She was engaged, but her husband usually goes away for his work. When she’s alone, she doesn’t know what to do with herself, so she drinks until she blacks out and smokes cigarettes until the walls turn yellow. She was actually a lot older than me, like in her late 30s, but she looked very young.

In my first year at Johns Hopkins University, the professional doctors had this stupid idea that I had an eating disorder just because I was underweight. This is an improper assumption drawn to inaccurate diagnosis and wrong train of thought. Anyways, I ended up in an eating disorder treatment center. The people I met were rather strange. There were three different kinds of patients: people who were sincerely sick / ill, people who were trying to recover their lives in many ways, and people who were just plain hopeless and insane drug addicts.

I conclude that there are some good doctors in the world who earn a degree and know perfectly how to treat their patients in a medical setting. There are some doctors who are absolutely clueless. The same concept goes for any profession.

The doctors at my undergraduate institution would never know about my issues or the medicine I was taking and from that point on. I did not trust them at all anymore. Not a word they said was ever any good. Only God is good. TC mark

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