A Bouquet Mixture of Vicodin, Sonata, and Lexapro
They gave me sleeping pills because I refused to close my eyes.
Time was blurring together like run on sentences and I hadn't slept in days. No one every understood that when I closed my eyes I saw it all again. Burning. Glass breaking. Spin. Roll. Nightmares so violent that I woke up night after night clutching my electrified chest in the hospital bed again. I told the doctor (the one with kind eyes who hugged me when I "lost it") that I could feel every vein in my body pumping. Neuron's firing; every corpuscle fusing and forming in my blood stream- I could feel it all like a second and a third heartbeat. I could feel myself on such an internal height that the external daze wasn't an issue for me.
I took the pills he gave me and let them mingle with the Vicodin. I had bruises over seventy percent of my body (like a burn victim.) Chris-crossing wires of black and blue, framing the peach healthiness of my skin. On my neck I had the slash; blood boiled scar tissue and a body length line of three-inch black from my left breast down to my right thigh (The seat belt saved my life; but it left its handprint on me for months.) The black and blue was so inflamed that it raised my skin in two inch slopes from the rest of myself. My stomach was black from slamming into the steering wheel. And my chin was scratched from the airbag. I could see the pink veins on my legs from the pedals twisting out of their sockets and tangling me under.
When I left the hospital I was in too much pain to walk on my own so I hobbled on other people's arms. I looked dead center into the eyes of the people staring at my out-of-place-ness. I smiled, I liked the attention. I could see their minds churning with idea's about what might have happened to me. Rape Victim? Battle Scars? I had overheard the nurses say that they had never seen wounds like those. Bruises we're supposed to look like that.
In the first few days I wore my scars like tattoos; I was proud of them. But with each night of no sleep I had too much time to think about it, and I took to wearing hooded sweatshirts in the middle of July. Because of the bruises I couldn't wear a bra, or jeans. The only clothes that both covered and didn't irritate were sweat pants and sweaters. I wore flip-flops and sunglasses to hide and shield myself.
The week after the crash I saw the car for the first time. It looked like ivy; twisted blackberry bushes too sharp to touch. The whole frame of the car was destroyed, (which is why, I realized, everyone had to use brute force to break me free.) I could smell the smoke again while I stood there, staring down at my make shift tomb. I was breathing the clogged odor again, remembering who it filled me; staying deep inside even when I tried to breathe it out. There was nothing left, so I took my CD case and left; I never saw it again. After that it was only referred to in conversations over the phone with insurance yuppies. "We're sorry but we will not be paying that medical bill!"
"Tell it to my lawyer bitch!" I had one now, and I said it until they stopped calling, but by then I had stopped answering the phone anyway.
I was back with my mother; and I walked the halls (all a shade of dizzying white) and moved in and out of time.
I remembered lying on the pavement; sticky and hot underneath me. I could fell blood between my fingers, and I watched the clouds shift their movements; and I thought: is God watching me? Can he see all of this from up there? Does he always make the clouds burn the eyes of little girls who lost faith in him?
"You're ganna be alright!" They said to me; and I remember the frantic search they made through my purse, looking for ids, cell phones, and names: "Call her by her name and she'll answer you!" I was still floating above myself; I couldn't have formed a word even if I wanted to.
Later in the ambulance when they were pumping me; fuming me with drugs and questions the boy said, "you're one of the lucky ones, you're ganna be alright now." They had to tie me down because I went into shock. Arms and legs straight against hard backing. I couldn't stop crying; I wanted to stop breathing again but I was afraid. I saw myself searching ghost-like for reasoning; for facts and information that I needed to know. What had happened? Why? That night when my mother was holding my hand in the hospital she said that I stayed for something that I hadn't done yet. She said- I think it's for you're writing.
By August my eyes we're bulging; heavy sockets, and I tore all of the posters from the walls. I had died. I had come back, but so much of myself was missing. I couldn't stand looking that the things that she had looked at for so many years.
I was seeing the doctor regularly at that point; for the bruises and the Vicodin, (I liked the way that the Vicodin made me feel like numb neon, I was glowing, but I wasn't showing it.) The accident had been the other guys fault, his damage on me so evident that people stared and I wanted to cause some damage of my own. I racked up the bills, and the pills and I didn't care what noises were swimming in my blood stream.
In August when my bellybutton started bleeding they rushed me back to the hospital. They thought, internal bleeding, surgery, anesthesia. I thought silence, and sleep. They took blood from me, running tests, pee in a cup and we'll get back to you.
It was nothing though; and I wasn't relieved.
"Are you depressed?" they asked; as though they couldn't see the look on my face; there was no trace of me left there. I had been scared to death to be in a moving car after that, but I hadn't told anyone. When my mother realized that I had to close my eyes in the passengers seat. That I couldn't breath unless the window was open, or the doors unlocked. That I had to clutch my hands together like I was in prayer; she told the doctor. Panic Attacks, they assured her, she'll get over them, she just needs to get back behind the wheel.
You can't drive when you're on Vicodin, and I asked for another fifty. I'll take you back out, we'll go to parking lots, and you'll get comfortable again. My mother, always the voice of reason in my strange voiceless world.
Every few days I would take the sleeping pills; I wouldn't close my eyes unless I knew that all I would see behind my lids was blackness.
When they gave me the anti-depressants my mind cleared. Everything left me, including the bad thoughts. I sat in the corner and waited for the end. The sudden heart failure. The brain hemorrhage caused by trauma. The midnight suicide that I was so sure would take me with it one night.
I sat in the bathtub and watched my fingers as they circled and closed into a fist, it's the most satisfying un-satisfaction; like having a conversation with a wall. You know it's listening, but it can't talk back.
It was the end of summer when I took to going outside again. I still wore the sweaters and sweatpants; I still had on the sunglasses to hide my puffy eyes but I would sit out on the back porch and watch the twilight sigh over the horizon. I took the flip-flops off and walked on the cold grass; so emerald green that it burned my bare feet. I put my hands on the course pavement and wondered. Things were coming back to me. Movies that I loved. Diary entree's that returned in all of their girlish flurry. I was only nineteen when it happened; but I felt ageless. Not young, and never old. I was still somewhere floating above myself; I don't think my soul re-entered my body for months after that.
I only realized what was really happening when I picked up a pen again. It felt so heavy and out of place between my bruised fingers. It burned hot, and stung cold. No words came to mind at the time.
Had I once been someone who wrote it down? Did I write at all? We're any words ever spoken? Had any sense of wisdom ever spilled from my tongue? I remember that looking at the lines of the paper made me nauseous and my skin itched. My eyes were dilated, and my hands shook.
I told myself that the pills were controlling me. Dictating me. Like fathers, and friends, and I poured them all down the toilet. A bouquet mixture of Vicodin, Sonata, and Lexapro. I stopped it all cold turkey and felt everything that was happening to me again. I was still bruised and twisted and the pain and sting hurt like hell, but it was my hell and I reveled in it. When I slept I dream of him; his twisted sense of logic running me down. I sat down with pen and paper and didn't realize that hours we're flying by me. Unaware of the rest of it. Like the pain healing, I wanted it all out of me. The dreams, the pain, the thoughts, everything.
I took walks; and read palm thick Jon Jakes novels and laughed at the females that he stereotyped. The wilting flower, or the whore-ish harlots. I went to plays and nude art exhibits. The police called, and I answered their follow up questions without jitters, without fear of going back there.
I got back behind the wheel in parking lots with my mother, like I was fifteen again, learning to keep the car on the right side of the road. I sang along to the radio, and finally, my soul came back into my body.