Deeply disappointed in the previous day's lack of results, I begrudgingly went back to the hospital the next day for one last blood draw and MRI scan. This time at 8:00am. Traffic was tougher and more irritating at that hour but I expected that. This time I could drive myself.
Upon arrival, one of the assistants met me in the lobby and took me back to the MRI room. The other assistant was there with another patient from a different study. He was noticeably hesitant about having an MRI. He muttered something about "if" he can stay in there for an hour. I wanted to tell him it was a breeze and to just try and doze off but I chose to be silent.
Another nurse I had not met before arrived to take my blood. We went to the other side of the room out of view of the hesitant patient. While my blood was being taken, I could hear what sounded like goodbyes so apparently the poor guy was too spooked to proceed into the MRI tube so my place in line advanced to now.
It was now 24 hours since the administering of Ketamine and still no signs of improvement. I didn't sleep well the night before. I was taken aback by the absolute nothingness this drug displayed. Not even a lone side effect. Not what I expected. I was within the 72 hour window of possibly noticing a change so I latched onto that—loosely.
After the MRI, one more question and answer session. She said she was sorry there were no positive results. Of course there was no guarantee and there were disclaimers aplenty stating it would possibly not work at all. I asked her if I could participate in future Ketamine studies with the thought that maybe the dosage was too low, or too brief. She couldn't give me that info as she was not a doctor and had no way of knowing. I did hear that the doctors were approved to do a study of "serial" Ketamine infusions which means a series of multiple injections as opposed to the single one I experienced.
My fear that it wouldn't work came to fruition. Maybe it was a self fulfilling prophecy. Maybe I willed it away with my negative expectations or maybe the drug simply didn't fulfill its promise. I'll never know. Yet again, I shook someone's hand for the last time, thanked her for her time, told her it was nice meeting her as we parted in opposite directions.
I hadn't had breakfast or coffee yet so I thought I'd venture into the cafeteria to grab a bite. After purchasing my items I found an outside dining area adjacent to the cafeteria. The building's A/C gave me a chill so I found a table in a sunny spot. As I nursed my coffee, the realization of another failed treatment gripped me. I really didn't want my hopes too high for this one but I couldn't help it based on all the fuss around this "breakthrough." I simply couldn't believe that yet another medication couldn't make the slightest dent. At the very least I was hopeful to experience just a small taste of relief. Just a slight glimpse. A tiny morsel of happy. How could this possibly keep happening? I wanted to cry but I couldn't. I didn't want to go back home. I didn't want to stay there. I was lost in numbness.
I pondered the thought that I was possibly NOT clinically depressed, that there was NO chemical imbalance that was the cause. If there was a chemical problem, why wouldn't all the chemicals I've been prescribed change things for the better even remotely? Maybe this was just who I am. and what I've become. It's just the fiber I'm made of.
The weather was clear, warm and breezy. I did take note of what a beautiful day it was.