“We’re running out of time!”
“Please, tell us what’s going on!”
“Madame, you need to stay back in the waiting area. We’ve got it from here.”
“I’m not leaving her side until you tell us!”
“Madame— Nurse Patel, can you please take the family to the waiting area. We will update them soon.”
Update on what? An update on how much closer to death I am?
The desperation in their yelling and pleading lower in sound, and I am left to wonder about who the voices belong to.
Oh God, I swear if this didn’t work…
“She’s losing a lot of blood. What’s the status on her vitals?”
Who cares about my damn vitals, am I dead yet?
Good, let me drop.
“Administering 20 mili…”
Oww! My body feels like it’s on blazing hot stones, every inch. Can’t they see I’m in pain, for goodness sake! Stop putting those sharp things in my skin. Oww! Oww! Stop it!
“How is it looking now?”
I’m in pain, can you hear me! Aren’t you supposed to listen to your…your… patient.
I was so patient. I organized everything. I took my precious time to clean up my room, leave it the cleanest it has ever looked. I took the things I needed in order to do it. Dad’s favourite knife for cutting meat, the name of his favourite chef etched in the strong, black handle. A mixture of his pills and mums pills, reds, whites, oranges. I didn’t understand what the labels meant; it was like a foreign language for my eyes. I just knew they were small enough for me to swallow easily, and they weren’t my prescriptions, and that’s the most powerful part. Some cold and cough syrup from the medicine cabinet, which mixed with alcohol creates a deadly concoction.
I did my research, and prayed it would work fast. When I thought it wasn’t, I just remained patient. Then the darkness started to consume me, I was still awake, but it was happening. I was ready to meet God, and only God. The next moment I opened my eyes, he would be there with open arms, welcoming me home. Home would become pristine, white clouds, a kingdom for souls who were taken away too soon, or called home by God. Or people like me, who was just doing the world a favour and getting rid of toxic waste.
The aunties at church said people who do it to themselves won’t go to heaven, because murder is a sin. It was at the memorial service for the pastor’s niece who committed suicide days before her 25th birthday.
“Good luck getting into the kingdom of glory if you’re a sinner.”
I don’t know why she killed herself, nobody knows till this day. Life was going well for her.
So, as I sat patiently in the bathroom tub, I repented of my wrongdoings. I swallowed the pills, along with the mixture, and let the knife violate my skin. Beside my indoor slippers settled atop the striped bathmat, were my will and my goodbye note, written in blue ink and pink, ripped paper from my childhood diary.
“Her vitals are increasing in stability, but she’s not awake.”
I am awake. I’ve been screaming in pain all this time.
“Okay, I will go alert the family. Clean this place up, they might ask to come see her.”
“Are you sure about that? She hasn’t improved in condition, I don’t know if it’s smart for the family to see her like this.”
“They already saw her when she was bloodied and almost dead. Who do you think called 911 when she was laying in that bathtub?”
“Sorry Dr. Davis.”
It’s black. Pitch black. I hear the clicks and clangs of metal objects in the space. The voices of people calling each other doctor, and saying things like, “I hope she wakes up. Can you believe such a young girl could do this?”
I don’t want your hope! I’m not waking up!
I am awake though… I need to go to sleep or something. In sports medicine, Mr. Smith told us that when someone has a concussion, you shouldn’t let them fall asleep. Maybe it will work in this situation because they said my vitals are stable, and I’m ‘awake’, so if I sleep, then I’m technically shutting down.
That makes no sense.
Maybe I am dead and this is a dream. Yeah, I am dead. I can’t be in a coma, I can’t be brain dead. I have to be dead.
“Esther! My darling Esther!” the voice breaks into a haunting cry.
Who is that? They shouldn’t even bother wasting their tears on me.
“Can she hear us?”
Yes, I can… dad?
“No, she isn’t awake. Signs are showing some brain activity, but we believe…”
Shut up, shut up, shut up, shut up! Just stop talking! Stop trying to put hope into them, I promised myself I would get it in one try.
“Can we please have some space alone with her?”
“Are we allowed to touch her?”
Lola… I think it’s Lola and Darius. I wonder which one of them called the ambulance. They should have just done nothing and left me there.
“How could she do this to us? Is she a nut?”
“Hey, don’t say that. Don’t start flipping out now.”
I’m a failure. I’m God’s only mistake.
“I saw her earlier today. She was smiling; you know she even baked after you and mum left for work. She made chocolate chip cookies in the kitchen, played music from the speakers, dancing and everything while she was doing it.”
It was the least I could do before I left.
“How could we not see?”
I’m a professional at hiding pain.
“Did you call mum yet?”
“No, I don’t want her to know yet. I want to wait until she’s done her shift and I’ll pick her up.”
“What? Esther could die soon and you’re going to take your time to tell mum!”
“Yo, shut up Lola! Why would you say that? She’s not going to die.”
Too late, I wish I could have told mum how much I love her.
“Esther? Oh my God! Help! Doctor, help! Go get the doctor!”
You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.