“Good Luck”

Apparently Fridays are happenin’ days for ECT. There seemed to be a lot of people here to have ECT at Parthenon Pavilion last Friday.  When I was making my way up to the ECT treatment area, there was another person, along with who seemed to be her husband,  in the elevator headed to the same location. It looked like someone had robbed her of her spirit; she looked really depressed.

Since we arrived at the same time, we got ready at the same time (e.g. putting the gown over our clothing, getting our vitals checked, using the bathroom so we don’t urinate on ourselves during the little spark) and were led to our beds, right next to each other, in the treatment room. It so happened that we had the same ECT psychiatrist, so he could treat us one right after the other. She got to go first. As Dr. F talked to “Allison,” I could hear them talking about how this was going to be her last ECT treatment. I can’t really recall what all they talked about, but what I remember hearing in the end was my doctor just telling her, “Good luck.”

Then, she received her last shock.

Good luck? That’s all she gets? I’m not a doctor and don’t know how this all goes, but she did not look good enough to me to stop treatment now. It was obvious to me that the husband was really concerned for her and was coming up to the prep area to ask some questions to the nurse about the aftercare. But she looked like she really needed to be cared for at this moment. She’s one of the more outwardly depressed people I’ve seen in that place. I just kept wondering how many treatments she had been through and pretty much forgot what I needed to tell Dr. F when it came my turn to speak to him. It was an awkward conversation, in that he received reports from my psychiatrist that I was doing pretty well —which is true, except I haven’t seen her in the last three weeks when I haven’t been doing all that well (which is apparently what happens when one becomes inconsistent with the meds). I forgot to tell him that part, and I don’t quite remember what I did tell him. Dr. F did ask me if I celebrated Christmas and then told me that I’ll see him again in a few weeks.

It’s been a few days since my last appointment, but I keep thinking about Allison. I really hope she is doing okay.


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