I became acutely aware of the blood coursing through every vein as though it were suddenly acidic, a mild burning against the walls of each artery. In a series of flashing images I saw my vocal chords, my heart beating, the blood flowing through doors ever trapped open, insides pulsating with a feigned life, the deep red striation of muscle tissue, and finally as though looking down on myself from the outside. I varied between these two vantage points before settling somewhat back in my body, but had lost motor control of any speech or voluntary movement. I simply watched my body convulse rather rhythmically for some time; I suppose some kind of seizure- which would not be the first time, only for the severity of it. I had a dog back at home that had partial and absent seizures, and he would always come find me to just hold him. I’d also experienced the same a number of times, but disconcerting as they were, I’d never told anyone.
It was no more than ten minutes of this before I felt myself being picked up. I could see, though it still went in and out of being fairly blurry; it was likely Derrick carrying me, perhaps looking to get me for group. Next thing I realized I was on the couch by the front desk, then lost track of some time before being roused back to a foggy awareness of a light being shined in each of my pupils a few times. I came around a bit more to be surrounded by paramedics, moving about in a seeming slow-motion, asking me questions I could not respond to. I had stopped convulsing, but was annoyed that my arms and legs were restrained to a gurney anyway.
A particularly young paramedic was starting my IV port in the back of the ambulance- back doors wide open- while I would guess a couple of the other technicians were taking a few minutes to try and obtain any information from staff. I was half watching him poorly execute putting the needle in the wrong vein, three times stopping seemingly to shoo something away with a fairly perplexed expression- perhaps a very persistent bug, of which I may have heard the rapid hum of its wings. I’d had a hundred IVs and knew he had put it in wrong, but had yet to regain speech that I should protest with.
I didn’t realize I had checked out until I opened my eyes to blackness. I was curled up on my right side; taking A moment to recollect where I was. Feeling about in the darkness, I noticed my clothes had been replaced with a sheet or something. I heard a voice from behind me, that sounded like it was some great distance away, echoing slowly through the blackness.
“Can you hear me? Hello?”
It didn’t even occur to me to say anything. I was too tired. I just wanted to lie here in the blackness forever, I didn’t want to see or talk to anyone, or do anything ever again; I was definitely too tired for that.
“I don’t think she’s conscious yet,” I heard the voice say, with an edge of annoyance.
I continued to lie there in the rest of a temporary nothingness, wondering how long it would be before I wound be forced back to the world exceedingly more tiring than nothingness.
“Honey I need you to wake up.”
“Leave me alone…” I muttered reflexively.
“I need to know, are you on any drugs? What did you take?”
“Are you sure? Do you remember? Did anyone give you anything?” The voice echoed.
“I’m not on drugs,” I repeated firmly. I really hadn’t taken anything. I couldn’t. Otherwise, people always thought I was on something, most often when I wasn’t. I was just born anxious and hypervigilant.
“Okay, we’re going to run a drug panel.”