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My Heart on Paper
I'm going to use this journal, not only for the pleasure and desire to jot down my personal status, but for my pieces I have written.
Hartford. It was damp and misty like a faint spray. My hands and feet trembled as I met the moist ash fault that had white and yellow marked lines that lead to so many paths. My eyes met the gray sky then the surrounding buildings in their unique proportions and splendor. All in one, it still did not ease any comfort in me whatsoever. Truly, I was scared to death. Who knew only a few words could drag me here? But here I was, and my mind and heart knew, I didn’t belong.
Crossing the street, my tear-shedding mother and I met two wide glass doors, which spread about nine feet wide and stood at least twelve feet high. The sense of our presence caused the doors to creek and bend open to lead us into a room with blue, red, white, green and yellow-patterned floors. I took a glance at a desk, which held small stuffed prisoners that all still had their heart shaped TY labels attached to their ears. For a moment, a chill raced through me like a strong wind. Soon, I could possibly remain as one of them in a way. It was hard to hold back tears, knowing that I feel like there is something wrong with me and the fact that I feel like I did something wrong.
I stood next to my mother, clutching my shivering body. “We’re supposed to check in,” my mother said quietly, through faint, fading sobs. A woman who seemed in her middle thirties, dressed in a pink, colorful character-patterned scrub nodded and pecked her manicured, pink nails on the keyboard in front of her. Her eyes kept their hold on my mother, then whipped back at the computer monitor. The reflection on her glasses flashed with white and a bit of small black spots, that could have formed my name on the top of the screen. Another woman, wearing a red-patterned scrub, almost about the same age as the woman in front of her looked at my now pale, quivering self. “I really like your hat,” she said, observing it closely. “It looks cute on you.” Too afraid to say a word, I slightly smiled and nodded. It was a black fedora with small white dots, forming lines that ran strait across the hat in a vertical direction. It wasn’t mine, but it was stylish, I could say.
When the woman was finished with checking me in, she jerked a pen with the company’s logo and name labeled on it to a door about six feet away from us. “The emergency room is right there.” she said. Without a second glance, I moved slowly toward the door, which opened slowly when our feet were centimeters away from it. Another woman, in her later twenties, her sleek dark hair, pulled back tight in a pony tail, called my name with a teeth-whitened smile. I moved slightly forward. She took me to a weight scanner and I stepped on, knowing this wouldn’t help anything for what I’m here for. It red glowing numbers, it read, 48.6. “48.6”? Confused, I stepped down and sat in a green chair, directly in front of a small doctor bed thing, all covered in a white paper, so well done it looked like it was wrapped for Christmas. Above it were small doctor tools that you would regularly see in a doctor’s office. Stethoscope, bandages, tongue depressors, blood pressure pumps, a thing they use to check your ears with… I only sighed at all the different tools just hanging in a neat, organized fashion and refused to look at anyone else. It only gave me a bit of comfort because of the pale-colored curtain hiding me from all the other scary medical things that made me quiver when I walked through the doors.
I slowly took of the fedora and placed it in my lap. My fingers traced on the top where the circle needed to form it. Tears welded in my eyes. I knew this wasn’t mine, but before I even left for Hartford, someone placed it on my head as I was sobbing on a bench behind my guidance councilor’s office. All I could do was think of him for a moment. How could I possibly tell him, or pretty much anybody of what is going on? Making it all sink into my brain made a pain form in my head. I hated this place already and I had only been here for like what, five minutes?
After a short session of notifying why I was sentenced here, the woman who weighed me led my parents and I down a hall with rooms. The rooms were occupied with miserable looking children of all ages, some with their parents, sitting next to them or standing outside the door. The woman seated us at the very end, where a younger, good-looking man, wearing a blue scrub, sat down in a chair, and watched two male children. One was knocked out asleep, while the other was eating lunch and watching something on television. I did not keep my eyes off anything but my black converse, dangling off the chair. I knew I was getting closer to what was going to fully become of me. They already labeled me with a white bracelet, notifying my name, age, sex and some other random numbers. I didn’t want to be labeled. I didn’t want to sit down. I wanted to just be home, watching Cake Boss or Spongebob Squarepants on my 47” flat-screen. It was perfectly clear that, that wasn’t going to happen. My dad’s expression was hard, and seemed angry. My mom was just saddened, more and more as each step here seemed like a horror film.
A nurse had led us to a white room, at the top of the door saying, 21 with a koala bear on a bamboo tree. It still didn’t seem welcome. To my expectations, I was damn correct. The room was freezing and did not look very clean. Stains were visible on the shiny, white walls. The floor was covered in dusty dirt and had a pattern of red, blue, green and yellow dots. Sadly, I sat on the hard bed. The sheets moved all around as I set myself down. It did not feel like a real mattress. I didn’t even know what it felt like, to be honest. The pillow felt like they shoved balls of squishy bags into a pillow case and stitched it up together. The white sheets were freezing and felt scratchy. I looked up and I saw a small television, the screen black. To my side, was a window…..screwed down by another window. The more saddening thing was that the window had no view. When you wanted to look out, it felt like you were in a fog. You could see nothing out of it whatsoever.
“I don’t want to be here.” I said, almost about to burst into tears. “Tough,” said my father, showing no sympathy. “This is the choice you made for yourself, and this is the consequence.” That just made it ten times worse. He was correct, I guess but still, this place did not seem very welcoming. I did not feel safe. Truly, I felt like a prisoner, dragged into something with a pretty label just to drive you in. it was like judging a book by its cover. I tried everything I could to give valid reasons why I should just leave here. “It’s all fake,” “I feel a lot better,” “They hate me,” “I made a mistake, just take me home or back to school, please,” “I’m scared,”. the list could go on and on. From why understood, it all seemed like a nightmare to me. Tears began to flow, and none of my parents cared that I was crying. All they did was look at me or daze off into thinking about what to tell everyone. So easily I thought to run out the door and find a bus that could bring me either to school or the center of my town. Reluctantly, I stayed put, remaining in a petrified position on the “bed.”
The hours felt like days. Sadly, I couldn’t go home. Over the course of the time, nurses put me in a blue striped scrub, with no pants. I had no freedom in any premises of being here. I had to be watched constantly, with my doors wide open and they had to see my face at all times. Which meant, I couldn’t hide underneath my sheets, I couldn’t leave my bed, turn around and pretend to look out the restricted window or sit down in a chair. If I needed to use the bathroom, I would have to wait for a nurse to take me, which was not only eighty feet away from my room. When I had to use the bathroom, the door had to be open with the sneaker of the nurse, which made me feel so tense and made it difficult to use the bathroom. Constantly, I had to only watch television and I couldn’t leave my room. Only my parents could see me and it made me more depressed because I needed more than just my parents. Sadly, they had to take my phone, my clothes, my necklaces and worst of all, the fedora. In general, there was nothing but my underwear was the only thing I could keep. My parents left me alone because I was getting so upset and angry with them. All I could do was just spit out negative things and complain about everything. There was never one positive thing that left my mouth. Spongebob Squarepants making squirrel jokes was the only thing I had. Normally, I would be cracking up and quoting every single line. But this time, nothing was said. I just laid on my bed in pure pain and agony, just waiting for when the doctor says I can go home.
What was going on with my time wasn’t the only thing that drove me into insanity. During the time, I could pick up why some other kids are here. The small boy right next door from me was about four years of age and always angry. He yelled, screamed, banged his head against the metal part of his bed (which later was taken from him) and ranted many negative things to the doctors like, “I’m stupid!” or “I’m gonna shoot you with my gun!” The girl over one door was my age. She was dark-haired and had a very intense problem. In the past, she had thought of killing herself. Luckily, she had left that thought in the dust but has now a new deadly target: her own parents. Her desire was to have them fall, possibly with a knife jabbed into them and then rest in piece in their house, which would be then a flame. This all was scarred into my head and the wonder kept me awake. A thought ran through the back of my head. One thing I wanted to do was keep my door shut. Not only for privacy and comfort, but for the murderous, blood curdling children not a good thirty feet away from me. The facts I could grasp will remain in me for as long as I can remember.
The day had slowly sunk into the hideous night. All the restriction, the pain, the needless councilors, the food and anything else I could add on to the list. I requested my mother stay with me overnight, due to the thoughts of murder, discomfort and no safety. To help ease my thoughts, my mother and I decided to watch Click with Adam Sandler. The movie was awful and of course they had to have a time limit to how long I was allowed to watch the television. At ten o’clock, everything was shut off, which made me angry. The television would probably help me go to sleep. Damn, was that a night.
“Lay down.” my mother said to me, curled up in a ball, sitting up and covering myself from everything. I shook my head. No part of me was asleep. Everything was fully functioning and under serious alert. The bed was extremely uncomfortable, lights were on and there were people talking constantly. “It’s eleven, Beth,” my mother said. “you need sleep.” My face melted into tears and anger. “I’m not tired.” I said through gritted teeth.
For hours, my eyes were popped wide open. My mother tried praying, talking and rubbing a part of my body to help soothe me into slumber. Truly, there was nothing that could help. I wanted to be asleep, but there was a part of myself that couldn’t stop being on high alert. No matter what, I couldn’t stress enough how much I missed my warm, comfy bed, which held me down with a soft, black blanket, covered by my red and black comforter. In my arms was a sweatshirt that always lulled my body to complete, peaceful rest. There was something under me called a mattress, that supported my whole body and made me feel more comfortable and gave me a bit of space when I needed to toss and turn. Unfortunately and obviously, despite all of the compulsive, paranoid medical staff, I couldn’t have any of those things.
Later in the night, I was startled by the sound of a new patient, just brought in. it was a little boy, I believe. Nurses and doctors accepted the challenge of this demon-spawned child, who had a blood-curdling scream, that was echoed throughout the wing. It sounded like he was about to be killed by a monster he could’ve imagined in his bedroom closet. He was not only screaming, but the sound was also continued with additional banging into a wall. Every scream rung louder and louder in my ears, scaring me into insanity and insomnia. I could overhear a nurse saying, “I have the needle.” my heart stopped. Soon, the screaming would come down to a depressing end. The shrieking was now forming into words. “NO!” the poor little child cried. “I’LL BE GOOD! PLEASE! NO!” Chains were now bound onto his body. In a moment, the screaming began to die down. The needle had found a new world in his flesh, bringing peace and a sense of hearing to those who could witness what the hell just happened. My tears began to pour and flow down my face like rivers. So badly I wanted to get out of here. I had no idea how this could all help me. All they had ever done here was out me in a room for hours and gave me a silent television for some hope. There was absolutely no hope in this. The best way to get help, was if a needle or shackles were restrained on you. How heavy was I, in sleep after midnight and still coping everything that I was just exposed to. I truly had no sleep at all for the night. Never again will I ever fall asleep in the same manner.
In the gray morning, I was awakened by the faint light from my clouded window. My mother was there and no nurses were around, except for the one, who had to watch me all night and the remainder of the time right now. Breakfast was given to me, to which I had no desire to consume. It had no correct texture and it was all cold. How badly I wanted Dad’s pancakes, that were cooked in bacon grease. As bad as it sounds, it was still always delicious. Luckily, I was able to be free of these clutches and leave with a now tainted mind. Automatically, do I now know one thing out of all of this: Never tell anyone you want to die.

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