07 February 2011 at 3:05 pm
I walked down three wrong hallways, like a mouse in a maze, muttering curses before I finally found the right ICU.
A nurse buzzed me into the wing and I stood there, frozen amidst a roomful of injured people, unsure if it was ok to breathe or move. The nurse waved at me and pointed towards Lindsey's room.
"Your friend is over there," she said.
She was, but she wasn't.
When I checked in with the hospital's administration for a visitor pass, they said that she'd had a lot of visitors, and there were rules: two people in the waiting room, two in her room, and the rest had to wait down here. There was no one there when I walked in, which saved me the embarrassment of crying in front of strangers.
I cried in front of my comatose friend instead.
I hadn't really thought too much about what I was getting myself into. Two brain surgeries after getting hit by a bus; I just thought about how I needed to go see her, not what I was going to see. I was Not Prepared for the miles of gauze around her head, the bruising, the tubes, the machines.
I didn't really get how her life was never going to be the same.
I read to her for twenty minutes before her parents came in, and after exchanges of sympathy and well wishes, left the hospital, walking quickly to the elevators, quickly out of the building, breathing deeply the LA smog to replace the smell of dubious recovery, shaking off the energy of desperate prayer with to join the miles of hopeless LA traffic.
mod l post-mod
Hi. Morgan, 27, of Santa Barbara, CA. I am a hypocritical admirer of rhetoric (when it is my own) and an observer of literary trends. A secret: I don't take anything very seriously, and that includes myself.