I had once prided myself on the length and shine of my beautiful black hair.
Now, however, I only saw my brittling hair as one thing: a means by which I could self-harm. After the nurses placed my back in the hospital bed, stabilized me as much as they could, and took care of any other necessities, I grabbed a handful of hair and yanked it out. The pain was so satisfying and pleasurable that I snapped a few more strands out of my scalp before calming down and closing my eyes.
I found myself drifting in and out of fitful, dreamless sleep. Every once in awhile, I heard activity around me in the hospital room. I momentarily gained consciousness to see that another patient was being moved into the hospital bed beside me, though the fact that I had a new roommate didn't faze me. I simply lay there.
How long had it been since I'd allowed myself to sleep without constantly flexing my muscles? Too long. Though the waves of guilt were nearly overwhelming, I let myself lie back and rest.
You're such a lazy snob, Tamar! You ought to be exercising!
No, let me enjoy just a few minutes of peace...
The next thing I knew, the sun was shining brightly through the window. What time was it? Ten o'clock? How could I have possibly slept so late? I'd been an insomniac for ages...how could it be that I'd gotten a full night's sleep? If I recalled the night before correctly, a nurse had come in once or twice to check up on my vitals, but I couldn't be sure. Everything seemed hazy.
I realized that my heart wasn't suffering from the usual dull pain, which would have been nice, had it not meant that my body was just a little healthier than it had been when I'd first come to the hospital. Well, I knew what that meant. Time to get to work.
After making sure my roommate was still sleeping, I placed my hands under my head and began to do crunches. My heart began to throb - a good sign! Only when my chest hurt so badly that I couldn't move did I allow myself to rest again.
My eyes fluttered over to the floor, where some of my beautiful black hair no longer lay. The nurses had probably cleared it up overnight. The evidence of my self-harm was gone...for the moment.