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The Same as Before

I was staring out the glass partition window, and I had felt my arm hairs pull. It was something sticky on my arm, and as I looked down, I saw my hospital bracelet. Placed a bit too tightly, and pulling on the fine hairs. It was annoying more so than painful. The tech asked me if the information on it was correct. Which was something she should have done in the beginning. My last name was wrong. She had typed ‘Bonnevon,’ and not ‘Bonneval.’ I asked her to fix it, and she didn’t know how. We asked the techs who had taken inventory of my belongings earlier, they didn’t know. Every tech we asked, didn’t know how to change my name! She said “I will find out soon, and we will get it taken care of.” I just nodded as if to say “Yeah okay.” Inside I was rolling my eyes at the lack of knowledge these techs had. I began to wonder if they were even trained. I was sent back in the waiting room, and about five minutes later, I was called by a tech. We started making our way through door after door. We finally stopped at a door with a sign that read “Women's Hall.” I thought it a bit odd that they called it a hall and not a “ward” or “wing.” It wasn’t until the door opened that I saw why they called it a hall. It was just that. A straight, narrow hall. With no windows, and nothing but locked doors. The doors were heavy, and had the small vertical windows in them. You couldn't see much looking through them. We began walking down the hall and all I could see was a cart, and a small chair with yet another tech just sitting there holding what looked like a phone.

I walked up to the tech sitting in the chair and she asked my name. I said "Rachel Bonneval," and she made me show her my bracelet. She asked why the name in the system didn't match, and I told her what had happened. She rolled her eyes, sighed, and said she knew how to fix it. If you're wondering, it never gets fixed. I was then given a hospital gown. I was in a tank top, and apparently showing your shoulders is wrong, and I needed to wear it over my clothing. When I swung the gown over my shoulders, I went to tie it. The ties were gone. They didn't even allow you to have strings on the hospital gowns to tie them shut. The tech told me I could go to the left room, which was an “Activities Room,” or to the right which was the “T.V. room.” They were watching Family Feud. I smiled, and nodded, peeked into the activities room, and all I could see was a 46 piece fish puzzle, and magazines. I chose the T.V. room, hoping Steve Harvey would make me smile a little bit while I wait to see the counselor. I walked into the room, and saw a single bathroom straight ahead, and to the right were two rows of chairs. The same brown recliners that I saw earlier. The television was the same size as the other I saw in the men's area, and barricaded behind the glass box, same as before. The Women's Hall was darker, and a lot smaller. I walked into the room after making a short glance around, and then chose a seat in front by the door. I wanted to see out, and be ready to go for when my counselor called me back. I sat down, and remembered how much I loathed these chairs. They made a sound every time you move, they don’t recline all the way, and they have the worst smell. A smell of leather and sanitizing wipes. It made me realize how much I missed my Blue Grotto scented wax melt from Scentsy. The smell of home.

I sat there watching Steve Harvey, and listening to the other patients laughter. I couldn’t bring myself to laugh. I was feeling the crippling depression that brought me to that place, and I was anxious for when my counselor called me. I couldn’t relax, or enjoy the show. This place was cold, and dark. I was curled into a ball in my chair, using my gown as a blanket. The tech must have seen that I was cold as she made her every two minute rounds from room to room, and she brought me a blanket. I thanked her, and curled into an even bigger ball, covering my entire body, up to my nose with this blanket. Even though the blanket was a heavy and itchy hospital blanket, that had a bit of a sickness smell, it was warm, and it brought some comfort.

The tech was seated right at the door. Sitting there, and fidgeting with the purple looking phone in her hand. She would walk into the room every two to five minutes, scan the room as if she were counting, and then type something into the phone. I could hear her talking to other techs and nurses, but every time she spoke it annoyed me. She was loud. Very loud, and even disrespectful. At one point, she was talking to another patient, and telling her she needs to “sit the hell down,” and “stop being so noisy.” I couldn’t believe she would talk to them that way. It was not right, and I took note of it. I figured as soon as I talked to my counselor, and got out of there, I would report her for her actions. They can't possibly allow that in such a place where people are in need of help! However, at this point I was far too scared to speak up. I didn’t want to hinder my chances of going home. I was being selfish. Looking back, I should have spoken up for that girl. She was obviously mentally ill, and I could see it, and she needed real help. Not to be belittled by these people, who were in charge of her care. instead, I made the decision that I was going to sit, and not move until my counselor called, and I wasn’t going to ask for anything, or make these techs have a reason to talk to me in that manner. I was going to be the ideal “patient.” 

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