A random act of psychosis

My son texted me a few weeks ago. “Hey mom. What was the name of Dr. C’s husband that you used to work with?” I told him I didn’t remember. I left practice after the peer review incident in 2011 and haven’t had contact with any of the doctors. He mentioned his name and then I remembered who he was talking about. He said mom, look up Seguin doctor murders. I saw his picture. His face looking sad, maybe even remorseful. I’m not quite sure. But I did know him. I had hung out with his wife a lot. My boys had been to his house. We all went out on his boat. He loved to bake bread. He was the reason I bought my bread machine. He was a doctor. He was one of the most brilliant men I have ever met. According to multiple news reports,  he had just murdered a couple on a Sunday morning that had come over to his mother’s house to help her move furniture. He shot one, paused, then shot the other one. Their three boys were watching in their pick-up truck. Three boys that I had delivered- ages 10, 8 and 7. Now they were orphaned in an instant.

When I first read the article in the paper I didn’t realize he had shot one of my patients. I saw the couple’s beautiful picture and just thought the woman looked familiar. Her name didn’t ring a bell. I had difficulty sleeping the next couple of nights. I never knew anyone that had committed a murder. I kept trying to imagine what was going through his head just before he pulled the trigger. I had admired this man’s intellect before. I found it fascinating to be around him. He never acted violent. He was mostly reserved, possibly depressed but never crazy. The first few times I visited his wife, he didn’t say much and just walked into another room. Then the next several visits he was very cordial. He offered me a blanket once because I was feeling chilled while we socialized on the couch. He adored his daughters and appeared to be a very attentive stay at home dad. He hadn’t worked in years,  I assumed because of his long periods of depression.

He had spent six months in a Psychiatric hospital as a medical student. He apparently recovered and finished medical school and residency and did practice I believe for sometime. I remember asking his wife,  who worked as a part-time Geriatric Psychiatrist, why she stayed with him. He always seemed so sullen. She said he was brilliant and she was attracted to his mind. So was I. He and his wife apparently divorced in 2012, a year after I left Seguin. I never kept in touch with either of them. His ex-wife was good friends with the administrator who initiated  the Sham Peer Review,  so I didn’t want anything to do with her. I could have become better friends with him, though. He was exactly the type of man I was always attracted to.

At some point his mother apparently moved into the second house on their property. I wonder if she understood her son’s mental state. I wonder if I would have understood if I continued my friendship. When he was arrested he claimed that he thought people were coming to harm his mother after he discovered some illegal activity on line. He believed that in  the previous couple of weeks there were threats on line that showed that people were close to finding him. He wouldn’t speak around any radios or monitors while in custody. Somewhere during the previous six years his mental status deteriorated to the point of psychosis.

A couple days after reading the article I texted my old office manager. She responded that the young woman was our patient. She reminded me of her maiden name which finally rang a bell. I had delivered her boys and her sister’s kids. She was one of my low income patients.  She was very sweet, humble and adored her kids. I never met her husband. He came in to her life after she had the boys.

She and her husband were just at the wrong place, at the wrong time. Our lives are full of many such random events. That day a random act of psychosis was the random event that ended their lives.