After a few days of being in the hospital, my mouth still tasted of medicine, it was sour from the lack of cleanliness. My skin and hair were greasy. They hadn’t been washed. I was fifthly, I smelled of medicine and hospital, of my own bodily sweat and fluids, but I didn’t care. But of course it was at that point when a nurse came in with her Pepto-Bismol colored bucket and a washcloth. Her sole purpose was to clean me, while I lay there motionless. She added the antibacterial soap to the bucket, and began to dunk the washcloth into the bucket. She “cleaned,” my legs and arms, and then proceeded to wash my hair. I just laid there, drugged and emotionless. At that point I was numb. I had lost all of my feelings to the process, to the surgery, to the reality, to my forever-euphoric medicated state I was in. I just didn’t care. The world around me could fall, and at that point I would have never even noticed. I was blank and emotionless. At least that was what I told myself, but then again, looking back there are those moments that left their imprint in my memory.
The moment I had to stand up to use the bathroom, instead of relying on my, oh so handy catheter, is still fresh my memory. I guess it was a moment of weakness, and that’s why it stayed, why it became imprinted in my thoughts. It wasn’t when they removed the catheter that laid it’s mark, it was the moment that I realized that I had to use a raised hospital toilet. I couldn’t sit down on a normal toilet seat because it was too low, and I wouldn’t be able to make it back up. I never commented about this to anyone. I never told anyone how uncomfortable it felt to rely on a raised toilet. It was only temporary, but it was something I never wanted to repeat. It signified a dependence on something I didn’t want to have. Writing this I realize that sometimes I feel like an elephant, were every wrinkle is a memory, an imprinted mark that left its print on my skin.