They drove me to the Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte. When I got there, I was checked into the Pediatric ER, and given a room. They took almost all of the devices out of it, so I couldn’t harm myself.
After I dozed off, I was waken up by two nurses, and they checked me, noticing my fresh cuts, and asking about them. I just started crying, and shrugged when they asked me questions.
I went back to sleep, and was woken up at about three in the morning. I was going to be taken upstairs, by a police officer. We went up to the second to the top floor, and he brought me to some double doors. The nurse came out, and brought me in. She took me, and evaluated me.
She did what she said wasn’t a strip search, but it was. She checked everywhere. In my underwear, in my bra, the bottoms of my feet, everywhere. It was really embarrassing, because they had to draw a chart of everything on me.
All of this and the registration took about an hour, and I was given a tour, even though it was four in the morning. Eventually, I was taken to my room, and told to go to sleep. I tried to, but I couldn’t help but notice my roommate. She was asleep, and so I tried to be quiet so I wouldn’t disturb her.
I couldn’t sleep. Wake up wasn’t for another two and a half hours. I didn’t know what to do. My roommate got up, and went to the bathroom. She noticed me, and we talked for a few minutes before she went off to sleep. She was only eleven or twelve years old, and seemed very sweet. She would be leaving that day, though.
Eventually, it was wake up time. My roommate showed me the ropes. She took me to the breakfast room, and we got our vitals done. We sat down, and they didn’t send up a tray for me. It was fine, because I didn’t eat breakfast. It was true, though. I was never really a breakfast eater.
They let me skip breakfast from then on. I spent a total of eleven days in that hospital. I received good treatment, and I actually enjoyed it there. I made friends, and got “new tools for my toolbox.” I didn’t really like that expression, but I just went with it.
I learned several things while I was there, and people could really tell. I felt so safe in the hospital, and at peace. I didn’t really like it when my parents visited, because I needed to be away. They had to, though.
I am going to make a list of things I learned, and put them at the end of this book so you can see them.
Anyways, I was actually doing better. I had made friends while I was there, and learned how to communicate effectively. I even had fun. Genuine fun. I got along with several of the nurses and psych techs, and we had tons of inside jokes and good talks. One of the techs, named Sunday, changed me.
He pulled me out after lights out one night, after he noticed I was awake, and decided to have a talk with me. He asked me about my sister, Sarah, and if I loved her. I said of course I did! I loved her so much that I didn’t want her to see me here. He told me that I need to stop doing all of this, because she would think it was okay to if she saw me doing it.
One of the things I will remember most from him is what he said to me during that conversation.
“Death is not an option.”
I believed it. And now, I live by it. Death is not an option, and it will never be anymore. There are so many better things to do with your life than just to end it, and sometimes it takes a long time and a lot of help to see it.
But I promise you, it’s worth it.