SMILE (Part 10) – or They Want me Sad
It’s like they want me to be sad. Slow and sad. And crying. I cry and cry in the day-room. Dr. Lopez with his long, pretty hair is so nice and when he smiles I think he knows just what to do. So I said I’d take the stupid pills. But now, they just slow me down and make me cry. Why do they want me this way? I watch the crane over the river, move slowly with that long, yellow arm, a giant wrecking ball on the end. But it just moves in circles and never hits anything.
“It’s called a chemical straight jacket, kiddo. And don’t let them do it to you. I know you’re still there, somewhere. You still have a choice. Refuse the meds!” Murray whispers. He sits close to me at the dinner table as I shift my food around. I don’t want to eat. I don’t want visitors anymore. I don’t care about Johnny’s letters, the kids, Murray and his love affair with Jenny, Miranda and her stupid glitter.
A few days ago, I was looking forward to being made a Level Three – which meant I could go outside and smoke at selected times. It meant your meds were working, your mood was improving. Level Threes have one foot out the door. But to where? It’s an assembly line of illness, one person brought in with bandaged wrists and tear streaked skin, another leaving with a paper sack of cloths and stacks of papers: affirmation worksheets, medication instructions, aftercare policies. Sometimes, a family member picks them up with smiles and hugs. Other times the patient is handed a bus token to nowhere. It’s the hesitation in their bodies that scares me the most, the way their step is heavy and unsteady as the tempered glass doors are finally unlocked, how naked their wrists look without the hospital identification bracelet.
I’m going to keep mine on forever.
Filed under: Bi-Polar, crazy, Depression, Memoir, Psych Ward, SMILE, Uncategorized, Writing | 9 Comments
Tags: Bi-Polar, Crazy, Depression, Letters, Mania, Memoir, Psychiatric Ward, SMILE, Suicide Attempt, Writing