I was on the road to self discovery, on my way to a better me, one with self-esteem and a supermodel thin body. I'd be slim and have ten times the energy I had at the moment. And not only that, I'd be able to eat as much as I wanted, and keep the figure. That's what the pamphlet told me all afternoon as I lounged in the plastic bubble of a waiting room. The same thing had been reworded continually from pages 1 to 4. It reminded me of the benefits, the positives of this experiment, how everything would be phenomenal afterwards. Only on the back, in the last paragraph did they mention the difficulties, the possibilities for failure. I didn't read past the first sentence. The minutes blended into a mass of impatience as two women near me were called in to see the surgeon. They didn't come back out. I grew slightly suspicious, but not fearful, never fearful. Every complication possible engulfed my concentration like a flame. What if I fell into a coma? What if the anesthesia didn't work for me? What if I died? And then the worst thought of all crept from the shadows of my mind. What if I came out of it looking worse? My foot began to tap on the linoleum tile as the small glass window to the reception office slid open and a cool female voice said those fateful words. "Mrs. Bayton, Mr. Mages will see you now." I stood on legs that felt fragile under my weight, nervous, and I ambled past the cardboard walls of that waiting room, realizing I'd come out a different person, if I came out at all.
There were faded generic posters on the wall of flowers in vases and families smiling together. They were there to make the situation seem more, if not completely safe. I followed the hallway to the only room at the end, where the air chilled in a gust before me. I heard the swish of a dress and out of the corner of my eye I felt I saw someone fly past me in a haze. But there was no one there. I shook my head, the nerves I had were so illogical. My close friend stepped of a door on my right, wearing a white doctor's coat and a pair of squeaky leather shoes. He told me to follow him, so I did. My mind shut off at that point, as I walked behind my maker to a set of doors. The one through which we entered had a sign on it bearing a plaque; "Plastic Surgery Ward." It wasn't as if I didn't know what I was in for. I had planned it, paid for it, and arrived on time for the procedure. That, however, made such a thing appeal to me less. He told me to undress behind a curtain, where I found the gown I was to wear. He gestured for me to lie down on the cold, thin mattress as he wheeled over a tray of instruments I could not even begin to describe. A nurse that somewhat resembled a Barbie doll came gliding into the room to assist the doctor. They told me to be still while they placed a gas mask over my nose and mouth. My heart thumped loudly in my chest, but I was still not afraid. It was all for the best. Things began to blur as I went under from the drug flowing through my throat, and I blacked out.
What felt like minutes later, I was awakening; I was coming back from some unknown darkness. For the first time, I felt a twinge of fear. What if I wasn't good enough? I shook it from myself, attempting to find the doctor, my savior, in this mess of color. There he was, beside the computer screen. He turned and smiled at me, the fog fading from obscuring my vision. "You're going to be just fine Mrs. Bayton. You'll be out of here in no time." I rest my head for a moment, wondering and anxious to see my own face, my own flesh. It would have to wait.