Protested Asylum 4: How Are You Feeling

The doctors and nurses here are much more aggressive.

They are quite uninterested in how we truly feel or our health. When I first arrived, I was isolated and heavily medicated. I was a mess, but I had faith that whatever was wrong with me, these doctors would help me get well. They had my best interest at heart. I believed the medication was for my health due to my little incident, but after months of bedrest and the inability to move, I began to think otherwise.

We are required to have weekly sessions with the doctor. Most of the other times, we are in the care of the nurses, but they are to follow the orders of the doctor. It seems that no matter what, every session goes the same.

“Esther,” the doctor begins, “how are feeling? You look frail, have you been thinking about how you disappointed your husband?”

A few weeks ago, I began to hide my medication instead of ingesting it. I do not wish to listen to their medical opinions of my health. They weren’t right in telling me to seek fresh air away from Ruth, and maybe their opinion is wrong now. I feel more like myself since stopping the medication. They do not have my well-being in mind. Now that I am out of isolation, I am beginning to see how it is here. I see the other women around me and how they are coping to what ails them. They give the majority of us sedatives to keep us quiet and subdued.

“Tell me,” he begins again, “how are you sleeping? Are the nightmares still happening? You know that is just your subconscious showing you unbecoming your behavior. You are a disgrace to your husband and your family name.”

Up until this session, I have been honest. I believed they wanted to help. I tried to explain what drove me to the incident that brought me here, but their only answer was to medicate me until I forgot who I was. What they have yet to discover is that in a moment of clarity, I found my own way out. I no longer need their help. I am slowly starting to see the many errors in much of my bringing up.

“Sir,” I say to the doctor, “I truly feel better. I realize what I did was wrong, but I will never do anything like that again. I am ready to be reunited with William and my beloved Ruth.”

“Esther,” he responds, “have you been taking your medication. You do not seem yourself.”

“Why,” I insist, “because I speak in clear and rational words?” I look up at the doctor and heave a sigh. He remains quiet, stoic. That look tells me everything I need to know. “I am sorry, sir,” are the only additional words I say for the rest of the session.

“Esther, you look pale,” the doctor finally says after a few moments pause. “I’ll make sure Nurse Cora gets your medication for you. I will see you next week.”

He escorts me to the door. I sneak a glance toward him, and in that moment, I see how much he intends to help me reunite with my family. Will I ever be able to convince him that I am well enough to leave?

To Be Continued…

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