Our Brain Has Been Raped
I should be at a loss for words and a loss for thoughts. Yesterday I was subjected to 6 hours of psychological testing and interviews. This was round 2 of testing for me. The first round was last week. I blogged about it here https://thekellies.wordpress.com/2013/01/05/assessing-the-damage/. I thought that was bad. Seems this second go round was even worse. Granted, we can’t really remember much of last week’s tests, unless we read the blog post K wrote about it. Even then it doesn’t seem real to us now. But these new tests, yesterday, well they blew the first tests out of the water. Way more intensive. Way more triggering. I was put into a tiny room containing only a desk and 3 chairs. The psychologist gave me 3 test booklets to fill out. Each was over 5 pages long. It felt like we were taking the SAT’s and ACT’s and college entrance exams all over again! The final written test contained a total of 568 questions. That is not an exaggeration. The questions were numbered, and I wrote down the number on my hand so I’d remember later. After answering that many questions, you’d think they’d have enough information on my mental history that the tests would be over. But that was not the case. It took me almost 4 hours to complete the written part of the psych test. After that I was allowed to take a break. I went to the bathroom to hide and called my Husband. I thought just hearing his voice would do me some good and calm my frazzled nerves. Spoke to him for about 10 minutes, then left the bathroom, found a water fountain and washed down a Klonopin, then went back to the testing room. I was just eager to get all that shit over and done with. So next came the hard part. I mean harder I guess. At any rate, a neuro-something doctor and a psychologist entered the room and sat down across from me. The psychologist looked very young to me; that made me nervous for some reason. The neuro-whatever pulled out some ink-blots and so it began.
“What do you see?” I said a bat. Next. “What do you see in this one?” I said a man in a fur coat. Ok. So far so good. Then it got weird. “And what do you see in this picture?” From out of my mouth, before I had time to think about my answer, the words tumbled out “Someone screaming”. She frantically took notes in her book. Things after that did not get any better. At one point, the ink blot she showed me looked like a vagina; I did NOT want to say that. I hesitated, I looked away from the picture, I cleared my throat. Finally I told her that I”d rather not say what it looked like (because I just knew that answer would be a red flag) but she pressed me to tell her. So I did. The rest of the ink blots were pretty boring and contained no harmful imagery to me. Although there was one of a bearded man sticking his tongue out at me. That might be considered odd. I really don’t know how they score a Rorshach test. But that was the last part of testing that was interesting in any way to me. The next 2 hours were a nightmare. She interrogated me and made me talk about traumatic things which had happened to me throughout my lifetime. She asked about my childhood. She asked about my parents. She asked about my drug/alcohol use. (I lied a little bit) She then delved deeper inside my tortured brain and asked specific questions about things like the time I was raped as a teenager and the time my brother attacked me and tried to kill me. I had to tell her things I do NOT talk about with anyone, including my shrink. The questions just kept getting worse and worse and finally I asked her for a glass of water so that I might take a sedative. She wouldn’t give me one, but pointed me to a water fountain, where I took a whole bar of Xanax. Then back inside that tiny, and feeling that it was getting tinier, room. The worst part was when she asked about the death of my father. Wow. Writing that just now, I had a sudden realization. Today, TODAY, is the anniversary of Daddy’s death. How strange. *Deep breath* I always struggle on this day. I had enough on my mind before I remembered today’s date. Shit. Now I’ll be a mess for the whole day. Fuck. But let me finish the story of the psych tests. She made me talk and made me cry and tried-I think-to make me switch. Which I did, at least 3 times, but I tried to hide it from them so I don’t know if they realized it had happened at all. Except for the first K that showed up in the waiting room. That was The Kellie. She doesn’t come out much anymore, but we were glad to have her with us yesterday since we were all alone (Husband had to work). She’s quite confident and relaxed. She didn’t have any problem talking to the doctor when she came and got us from the waiting room. The Kellie made small talk and told jokes during the elevator ride up 4 floors. She was dressed in bright colors and her makeup matched her outfit. She felt self-assured and was not worried about the tests. However, as soon as the psychologist left us alone in the little room with all those questionnaires, The Kellie went back inside. A different K came out then, one who was insecure and frightened and had trouble concentrating on the tests. We developed a terrible headache during this time, probably from a combination of thinking too hard, worrying, and switching. After everything was said and done, I was beyond exhausted. Physically and mentally. I hadn’t slept in several days because I’m manic right now and because we’ve been so worried about these damn tests. Well, the testing is over. No more. Now we must wait. The psychologist told me that it takes approximately 3 weeks to score the tests and do the assessment. That feels like a very long time. But truthfully, I don’t care anymore. The doctor said that these tests should show exactly what is going on in my brain, including whether I have comorbid illnesses. (which we know I do) So. In less than a month I’ll finally have the answers to the questions I’ve been asking myself and my shrinks for years. What the hell is wrong with me? I’m pretty sure at this point in our life, we have a good idea of all our neuroses. But we want to hear it from the doctor’s mouth. We want a true diagnosis. We need the validation.