So, if you’ve been reading my blog, this story is a continuation of the blog titled “Psychosis Killed My Hamsters.” which ended with my Mother and I hitchhiking to an Amtrack train station. My Mom bought us tickets to Manhattan since we had relatives in New York and she wanted to know if they were still themselves or were evil duplicates as she said everyone in Florida was.
I was highly upset and trying so hard to act normal. I knew that my hamsters were slowly dying literally at that moment while we waited at the station. I found a cute baby kitten at the train station and it was comforting me. Mom said I could keep it and it soothed me while we waited for a few hours at the station for our train to arrive. My Mom’s bizarre behavior was obvious to everyone and one friendly employee paid a lot of attention to me while we waited. He knew they wouldn’t let the kitty on the train but he was kind and didn’t tell me until our train arrived. He kindly took the kitten from me and promised to give it to his grandchildren. I’ll never forget that man.
So, we boarded our train without any luggage wearing summer clothes appropriate for Florida weather, definitely unprepared for the November winter awaiting us in New York. All I had with me to keep me occupied was a Garfield book. I’ve been a bookworm my whole life.
Of course, Mom told no one in Florida that we were going to New York so we were repotted missing and Mom’s car was found abandoned at the construction site where she left my hamsters boxed up to die in the brutal heat. Our immediate family in Florida was worried sick, not knowing where we were and fearing for my safety. I was 8 years old at the time.
My Mom’s shoes broke on the train so we arrived in Manhattan late at night, freezing cold with my Mom walking in her bare feet. Before we could go see our relatives in Brooklyn, Mom’s delusional thoughts sent us on a strange errand. She was convinced that her ex-boyfriend bought her tickets to see The Grateful Dead perform at Radio City Music Hall. So we had to go there first. Of course, there were no tickets so we hailed a cab and went to Mom’s Aunts apartment in Brooklyn, arriving in the middle of the night.
Aunt Pat was shocked and relieved to see us. She knew we had been missing for two days. The family in Florida had called her. Unfortunately, my Mom decided that they too were “duplicates” and not really themselves anymore. I fell asleep almost immediately and Aunt Pat called my Grandfather Bob to tell him we arrived and I was safe.
The next morning, we set out to go shopping at Macy’s as she had promised me on the train and we just needed to stop at the bank to get money. In those days, your ATM card only worked at the specific bank you had an account with. Mom went to a bank that she didn’t have an account with and made a huge scene, demanding money. The police were called and we were taken away to a hospital for a psychiatric hospital for an evaluation due to her bizarre behavior.
What she told that doctor right in front of me still haunts me to this day. She explained to the doctor that Armageddon had come and by some mistake of the Lord we were left behind. She requested lethal injections for both of us so we could be reunited with our loved ones in heaven.
I feel nauseous even writing about that horrible day. Mom was admitted to the hospital of course, and I was taken to the local police station to be held until my Grandfather and Grandmother’s flights arrived in New York and I could be released to them.
I waited in the police station for hours and the entire police force treated me like a princess while I waited. They let me sit in one of their offices, brought me coloring books and crayons, sandwiches, drinks and Hershey bars. I felt safe. Finally!
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To be continued…..