-It makes me nervous to put this out into the world. So here is chapter 3. Be kind or brutally honest. It’ll be fine. . . maybe.
When I did wake up again, I was surrounded by nurses and doctors. It was an emergency room somewhere
Other than being at the hospital, I don’t know where I am at all.
The redheaded nurse to my right noticed that I was awake. She said, “Hello beautiful. What’s your name?”
I honestly did not know my name. Who was I? Why couldn’t I remember?
Should I be freaking out right now? It seems appropriate considering. It’s more than that. I have no idea of who I am at all. I don’t even know my favorite color. Do I have children? A husband? A girlfriend?
The nurse senses that I don’t have a clue. She tries to be reassuring. Her nametag says Audrey. It fits her.
Her red hair is pulled together in a neat and tidy bun. Plus, she is well-manicured. She could be in a cocktail dress drinking martinis just as easily as she’s in nurses scrubs. I need a name that fits me just as well.
Audrey says that we’ll have time to figure out everything after they get me stitched up. Oh yes, the gash in the back of my head would explain a lot. At least, I don’t have to look at it. I probably was not a nurse in my forgotten life. Did I mention the smaller gash on my forehead? It’s not the look that I was going for when I put on that formerly white sundress. That much I do know.
Maybe I can get some clues about who I am if I look at my face. My new nurse friend agrees to find a mirror as soon as they finish fixing my wounds. I’m a bit nervous about how bad I must look.
The nurses clean up my wounds and bandage as much as they can. The doctor will visit soon they say. It’s not quite a promise. Maybe it’s a promise they can’t keep.
I’m taken to a room on the neuro unit. The doctor does visit eventually. Where else am I going to go? I also don’t have any concept of time. So I don’t complain. Audrey comes back after lunch with a mirror. The shock of seeing myself in that state is overwhelming. Luckily, the doctor makes an appearance. I need a distraction from my face.
Doctor Min is one of the few doctors here with a pleasant bedside manner. She wants to know if I have a name that they can call me. I have to think for a minute. Names have a way of sticking even when you dislike them. So I chose Carrie. It’s a name that I can live with. Maybe I had friends named Carrie at one time. They were probably likeable people.
I suspect that under Doctor Min’s cheerful demeanor is a really strong-willed person. Everyone wants to please her, even me. I don’t think it’s out of fear but respect. None of the nurses roll their eyes when she leaves the room, which must be a subconscious sign of respect. You know that saying about being small and mighty? It describes Dr. Min down the last detail. She is petite but something about her commands your attention.
My visit to the neurology department lasts about a week. Doctor Min orders tests, tests and more tests. No one can say that she is not thorough. They all conclude what we already know. Blunt force trauma. The tests can’t tell us who did it or their reason. Doctor Min tells me that she wishes she could find out more but she has exhausted all medical avenues.
Audrey stops by on her day off so she can give me a manicure. I think she feels bad about bringing the mirror in too soon. I don’t blame her. I did demand to see my reflection. It was my own fault. She thinks that if my nails look good then I’ll feel good. It’s a start. I wonder when I can get my hair done. Or brushed. I’m not sure when the last time I had my hair brushed. I ask Audrey if she can arrange for me to get an appointment for a good hair washing. She says, “As soon as the stitches heal. It should be by the end of the week.”
I think the doctors and nurses want to send me away sooner. It’s nothing personal. I’m not sure it isn’t the fact that my hair is a disaster. Not to mention that the head wound and memory loss are not winning me any pleasant houseguest points.
They just don’t know where to send me. No one knows what to do with me after the wounds begin to heal. There is still no sign of my memory. No family members have come to claim me as their mother, wife, daughter or friend. Doctor Min asks the nurses if they have ideas about where to house me for a month or so. Most wish that they could bring me home but they have families and no extra rooms. One jokes that it would be easier if I were a kitten. Who can argue with adding a kitten to the family? However, my favorite nurse, Audrey, volunteers to let me stay with her, even though I’m not an adorable kitten.