Monday, January 21, 2008

Locked Away: Chapter 5

You won't tell anyone? No. No one.

I make a list of people that I want to know that I am here. She begins the list. Parents? Yes. Aunt Gladys? Yes. Anyone else? My family. Is that it? Yep. Your ex girlfriend? No. Boss? No. Friends? No.

If anyone else calls, they'll tell them that I am not here. I'm not in this hospital. I disappear. The funny thing is, that's what I have been wanting to do for a long time now. I just didn't know that there was another way besides dying.

I was brought up to care how other people felt. But right now, I don't. I only care how I feel. What I want. Right now, I want to hide and feel safe. Heal. Recover. Not care. Be dependent.

The nurse brings a bag of my things. I guess my Mother got them together for me. She's so thoughtful. Everything that I would need for a vacation is packed for me.

I'm in my sweats following down the corridors of the hospital to huge, double green doors. They are secured. We are let in. She tells me again. No one will come through these doors that is not on your list. No one.

Relief. Safety.

She also tells me that they're only locked from the inside. I can leave if I want. I am not a prisoner. I am here of my own volition.

The Psych nurse asks for my bag. She needs to check it for things that can't be on this wing. She removes my fingernail polish. Someone could try to drink it. No hairdryers. Someone could electrocute themselves. My nail file. Someone could stab themselves.

I explain that I'm feeling better. But it's not about me. It's about all of us. We're all on suicide watch. She takes damn near everything that I have. The nail file. My curling iron. I'm going to look like hell.

They ask if I want to be in a room with someone or alone. Alone, please. I'm not in the mood for conversation or company. I don't feel like making nice. I just want to be. Breathe. Not worry. Not look over my shoulder for who could be following me. Not wonder if the FBI is going to question me again.

It's late. I use the soap that comes with my bathroom and lie down. I'm tired. I've put myself through a lot. But I'm feeling better. Until I hear the screams. People rush down the corridor to her room. Someone cracks the door to check on me. I'm okay. They're helping her. She's crying now and I can hear all of it muffled. More screams come. More checking on me. They know that it's unnerving to the rest of us, so they move her somewhere more secure.

I sleep soundly for the first time in a long time. Safely locked behind the green doors of the crazy wing.


Biscuit said...

I think you should write a book. Seriously. You've got us all on the edge of our seats, empathizing with Past Lynn, pondering life and the effects of it's twists and turns, and ready to cheer for you when the happy ending comes.

mackeydoodle said...

The scary thing is, if it wasn't for my best friend Rebecca, that could have very well been me.
I am happy to read that your Mom is there for you.

Jen said...

Some of this just leaves me speechless. Sometimes saying nothing is what's best thing between friends.

I've had 1st hand experience with this & until you wrote these words, I never truly understood how they felt. I thought she was being selfish - I see that she was in more pain than she could say. I feel awful for how I used to think, but I think that what a kid does when she's 18 and has a sister who didn't love her life like I did mine. My sister is still here today & I'm so very thankful for that. I'm glad you're here too. You've helped me.

BarnGoddess said...

I used to not care whether I lived or died until I had kids.

thank you for sharing.

I am looking forward to reading the rest of your story.

Southern Sage said...

ok where did the FBI come in?
Did I miss something?

Hot Lemon said...

I think the very definition of "hell" is to be on a hospital unit of ANY sort with another person in the same room w/you...