The beeping of the monitor in the distant, the buzzing of fan overhead and almost two in the morning. I cannot sleep.
Perhaps it is all the sick people lying around me, sleeping, away from the pain being awake brings them or maybe, it is just the air-filled with lingering hope and despair but yes, I cannot sleep.
This is not the first time I have been admitted to the hospital, pumped up with IV fluids, a needle prick here, blood drain there. All too familiar and yet so strange. I have been on both ends of the needle and the receiving end is worse, the initial penetration of skin, the cold fluid entering your veins, lying on the bed where many others have been before. Being woken up for pills, for shots, for tests and questions; rest almost never happens.
What’s worse than a night at the hospital is having a surgery scheduled the next day. The fasting, the waiting outside the OT while the staffs get everything ready for you. Lying down on the OT table, staring at the blinding light over head, plugged into the monitors,a mask over the face. Injection of propofol, cold and painful sensation crawls up the veins as vision blurs and you pass out.
The next time you open your eyes, you are back on the bed supposedly better than before or so is said to be.
Recovery is the hardest and tests patience the most. Days on end chugging pills, doing tests, being under “observation” until you are finally deemed ready to be released.
The deafening silence, despair-loaded air and sick people all around; still the only place where we feel reassured of ourselves, the place where hope lives.