Attractive Young Psychiatrist Nancy began her questioning in earnest:
“How long have you been drinking?”
“All my life,” I said.
“No, I mean recently.”
“Oh, ‘bout forty days and forty nights.”
(No chuckle; guess she was gonna be all business from this point.)
“Do you feel like hurting yourself? She asked.
“Pretty certain that is what I am doing right now. You ever been on a ‘forty day/night drunk?”
“Have you ever attempted suicide?”
“Of course,” I replied. “Hasn’t everyone?”
“How many times?” She went on.
“Only twice, but they obviously didn’t take.”
“When was this? At what age?”
“First time, I was thirteen. Second time nineteen.”
“And what prompted these two attempts?”
“First time because my football shoes were too tight, excruciatingly so, and this was affecting my performance and my passionate desire to become a High School Football Star.”
“Describe your attempt.”
“I pointed a locked and loaded , hammer back, .45 Caliber pistol at the roof of my mouth for about 5 seconds, finger on the trigger.”
“And the second?’ she asked.
“Oh, that was just over a woman. I would not call that unprecedented in the ‘History of Man.’”
“Describe this attempt please.”
“Well, as I said, it was over being dumped by a woman, a thirty-year old woman and it was also over the fact that I could no longer afford the car payments on my Chevy Monza 2 Plus 2. So I drank a pint of vodka and at a high rate of speed on a deserted Texas FM Road, turned a hard right and flipped the car. Thrice. I figured I’d kill two birds with one stone, so to speak.”
“Were you abused as a child?”
“Do you mean do I hate my mother?” I asked.
“No. Were you ever abused?”
“My Grandfather shot at me with a deer rifle once, but he had cause because I had just a few moments earlier knocked him off the porch with a pretty good right hook to the jaw.”
“Why did you hit him?”
“He was trying to beat my Grandmother and she asked for help. Granddaddy was a mean drunk.”
“How old were you?” She asked.
“’Bout fourteen and change.”
“Does alcoholism run in your family?”
“Naw, it just kinda strolls. I mean, far as I know, it was just me and Granddaddy.”
“Do you want to stop drinking, Lance?”
“Yes. I don’t fancy dying just yet. I’m not ready.”
“Not ready to die, or not ready to quit drinking?”
“The dying part.”
“So, you’d like help?”
I watched her on the screen as she appeared to be writing a short essay on her note pad. After about two minutes, she looked up and said,
“OK Lance. I am going to make arrangements to send you to a hospital in Garland. They have better resources to help you than here in Commerce.”
“How long will I be there? I am a busy man, ya know? OK, just kidding, but can you give me an idea?”
“Probably three days or so to get you past the delirium tremens and not sure how many after that. Are you willing to go to this hospital and allow them to help you?”
“I never much cared for Garland, but sure. One problem though, I cannot drive it just now.”
“The Hospital will make arrangements to have you transported, so don’t worry about that. You just try to focus on the treatment they will give you.” She said.
“TRANSPORTED??? “What am I? A truck farm product?”
“Thank you Doc, I will. And, by the way, I am sorry for being a smartass, but I suppose you get that a lot, dealing with drunks and mental cases. I do appreciate your time and your help. Thank you.”
“It’s Okay Lance. I am going to talk to the staff now at your Hospital and begin making the necessary arrangements. Take good care.” She said and then severed the connection.
I got out of bed and returned the IPAD to the Staff Desk and thanked them.
“How’d it go?” One of the staff asked.
“You know, you can’t get Netflix on this thing?”
Unnamed Staff laughed.
Finally! (Love it when I can make someone laugh)
“It went just Jim Dandy, I suppose. Looks like I will be leaving Y’all soon.” I said, and then returned to my little Hospital Cave.