People often ask me if I have made friends in here. I always give the same response:
I am here to get better, not to make friends.
That’s not to say I am not polite to people, that I don’t pass the time of day. I have no prejudice against anyone here…after all I am just as much an “inmate” as them.
But I know myself. I worry, I take on other peoples baggage. And quite frankly I have enough of my own baggage to deal with. It’s not snobbery, it’s survival. Swapping phone numbers, day trips out together….no. It is not what I need.
Despite my best efforts to remain aloof, a few of the the older women have taken it upon themselves to take me under their wing. Like mother hens they have held me as I cried, passed me tissues, checked in on me and expected nothing in return.
One night as I was trying to sleep I heard some quiet sobbing coming from my mother hens cubicle. I lay there awkwardly not knowing what to do. Then I got up, and walked into her cubicle. Wordlessly, I lay down next to her and held her as she cried.
After a while she calmed down and she turned to me. “thank you…no one has held me like that in a long time.”
“it will be ok” I told her.
“yes it will ” she said.
She was discharged the next day and I never saw her again. I hope she is doing well.