TNP 14 "Aftermath pt 2"

TNP 14 "Aftermath pt 2"

A Chapter by dw817

... After working for Nancy, this is the recount of my time in the mental ward (All Saints Hospital) and what happened there.




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My time in working for the government during the Savings & Loan Crisis of 1990 with a beautiful
woman who took care of absolutely everything for me in my employ. And I mean EVERYTHING.

© August 2013 Written by David Wicker
Please do not reprint without permission

* * *

This chapter is Rated: TEEN

Ok, this is continued from my time in the mental ward at All Saints Hospital (still non-fiction).

The tray ma'am watched to make sure there wasn't a problem, and there wasn't, fortunately. It was definitely the last time I was going to give away my salt packet.

I was the last to finish eating as I was thinking of a lot of things. I don't really know if I wanna go in detail about the days I was there. They were all structured, we had days of exercise where we moved our arms and legs and sat in a chair.

The most disturbing of all was learning how to cope with stress, of how to appear and present ourselves for job interviews when we got out as apparently we were expected to immediately get employed.

Stuff like that. I know I remember wanting to go to bed earlier one day and my nurse asked why and I said cause I gotta get up at 5am and bathe.

She said who told you ? And I said a fellow who comes to watch me wash. She said really. I said yes ma'am, and can I please see Susan now, I explained that was my Teddy Bear so I was introduced to the people in the office, different from who was on the floor.

She smiled and showed me the way. I entered the office and it was all women and they were very insistent. They said only if I did EVERYTHING I was told, clean my plate of food every day, don't talk back to anyone, attend all the classes, and don't give any trouble, THEN I could see Susan.

I nodded. They said OK and gave her to me and it was like a wave of warmth came over me. Not like the sunlight warmth but a deep inside warmth that toasts you down to your toes.

I - hugged Susan. I remember falling against the side of the door to look at her. I placed her in front of me with my mouth open in amazement and reached up her fuzzy little arm to touch my nose and I saw her smile at me and crinkle her cute little brown bear eyes. It was wonderful. We were together again.

I could see that sometimes with Teddy Bears. They had a life of their own they would show only to me, because I was patient enough to notice it.

After several minutes of the women in the office watching me with big smiles on their faces, they thought it would be funny to suddenly take her away from me and I wasn't expecting that so I didn't fight back but I sat on the floor staring ahead into empty space and then I started that weird teeth-chattering thing like I felt cold again.

But one woman wouldn't have that since I did that when I first arrived so she got up from her chair and came up to me and stooped down to kind of gave my shoulders a weird and painful squeeze to make me aware of what she was saying.

She said, "Now David, you had your time with - this. Now YOU need to do as we tell you. You can see it tomorrow again, but ONLY if you behave. Behave now, okay, hun ?"

I nodded and fought back the tears, "Yes ma'am."

"That's fine, now go to the 3rd room down the hall cause they are already talking about careers."

I left and entered the class and apparently it was okay for me to be late or whatever it was. I remember sitting down and - there were odd things talked about it. It was like I was failing school somehow on my first day, I was failing - life ? It was all - a failure to me.

I remember someone next to me fell down screaming on the floor like what they were saying didn't make sense and it hurt their ears.

It hurt mine too, a lot of it was like a buzzing in my ears, no-one had ever talked -so- weird as they did, all grown-up like I knew things, and I didn't. She was talking about life stuff but it was at an odd level, like GRAY words, like life I never wanted to see or hear. Free of the magic I saw in it.

I know my own Dad had never ever talked to me about careers or anything. Just that he loved me, I was his son, and that was all that mattered in the universe.

Her words clearly meant the absence of Teddy Bears forever. I sensed that immediately, and that hurt me more than a knife going through my chest. She talked so adulty.

She talked about having children and how to raise them and that brought a look of bewilderment to my face. How - could I possibly raise a child if I myself as a child was not raised properly ??
It was the whirr-chk-chk all over again. I closed my eyes tight and saw the spinning red glowing helix. I remember telling my Mom about it and her saying that it was an evil sign and she said a prayer over and over again to make it go away when ever it showed up in my vision.

There were invisible chains that reached up in my mind's eye to bind it down. There was an angry screech from it. It was -anger- I never wanted to experience in real life and I hoped I never would.

I remember I started my teeth chattering thing again and I felt my grip tighten on the chair and they were plastic and the handles cracked beneath my grip I had sucha strong grip on them cause I was really upset now.

She suddenly stopped talking hearing the breaking sound of my chair and got down to kneel at me, eye-level and said, "David ?"

"Yes ma'am ?" I said though tears were falling down and I felt my arms start to get wet from tension and perspiration. I do that, if I have what I call "The Storm" I start to put out water from every part of my body until my clothes are soaked in sweat in only a few minutes, even in an air-conditioned room.

And it felt like lightning was hitting my brain over and over again until my voice slurred and my eyes were getting blurry and dilated.

"How are you feeling right now ?" she asked concernedly seeing water bead up on my bare arms.

I bit my lip and felt I could cut my teeth right through it, "I'm not doing well, ma'am. You're talking strange stuff and it hurts my head. I can't do this. I can't - listen to what you are saying."

She put her hand on my shoulder and my shirt was already getting damp, "I'm sorry, David. I'm just doing my job here. I was told to talk at this level and I know a lot of you have grown up sheltered and you're not used to this kind of direct communication."

* * *

She stood back up, "Are you going to be okay, David ?"

"No ma'am." I said and then my head started trembling and shaking and I felt like the bones in my neck were vibrating so fast I could feel heat building up in them. I saw my toys flying in front of my eyes. I was smashing them, little LEGOs, all the good toys I liked I never wanted to break. I saw them breaking now. It made no sense !

She nodded thoughtfully, "That's fine, David. Why don't you go watch a little TV and I'll catch up to you later ?"

"Yes ma'am." I said and then staggered up as my muscles were all jerky and water was collecting on my legs and I left. The other person who was on the floor like they hadda stroke was carried away by two other people and the 'instruction' went on.

One nurse followed me to the TV room and was very nice to me. She kept putting her hand on my forehead like I hadda fever and feeling my pulse too. And I suspect I did cause I was sweating up a real storm right now. Finally she asked what I would like to watch.

"Cartoons ?" I implored.

"Sure." she said and turned on the Cartoon Network. We were never allowed to touch the TV ourselves. She put the volume on low so as not to disturb others.

There was a great episode with Yogi Bear as he was tricking Boo Boo into diverting the ranger from seeing him riding on a truck so I watched that. She sat with me for a moment and watched me intently. After a little while she asked me to face her and shone a pen-light in my eyes I guess to look at my pupils.

Then she muttered something to herself, I guess surprise. Finally she nodded after a moment and said dinner would be in an hour and could she find me here later and I said, "Yes ma'am."

She got up and left. I had a quiet dinner and sat away from everyone else, especially that guy that took my salt packet earlier.

I remember I was going to bed at night and before I did that the other nurse showed up and said, "David, I thought about what you said earlier. You need to know that you can bathe anytime you want in the morning. It's okay to want privacy while you do this. Do you understand me ?"

"Yes ma'am." I said, not really understanding cause I know all my life I NEVER had privacy when I did these things except at home. Even my Mom bathed me till I was 12 when I would go visit her.

Then she crossed her arms angrily, "This person who is watching you bathe. We want to know who he is. Can you tell us who it is, hun ?"

I shrugged, "I don't know ma'am. A big guy but he works here cause I know he has a shiny name-tag on, ma'am."

"Do you remember what name it said on the tag ?" she asked nicely.

I shook my head, no.

She sighed, frustrated, "We'll find out. If he shows up again, we'll know. Go to sleep for now."

I went in my room and she locked it behind me and I went to bed. Sure enough at 5am the big fellow showed up again. He clicked and unlocked my heavy metal door and said, "Let's get you cleaned up, son."

"Yessir." I said respectfully, I certainly didn't want any more arms pulled behind my back.

We got to the baths and he stood there as I took off my clothes and sounded like he was breathing a little heavy which didn't make sense. It wasn't that far a walk ? I didn't say a word. I handed him my terribly nerdy glasses and he set them on the sink and then I stepped into the shower.

And then I started to wash up with soap and a washcloth. It was the same shower nozzle thingie on a rubber hose. Then it was odd, he stepped closer and suggested the areas I needed to wash. I looked down and could see he was getting his black shoes wet by standing so close to me in the shower where it was splashing.

He asked if I shaved my arms or legs and I said nossir so then he asked why they were so bare like a girl's and I said I was born that way, very little body hair, sir, I think I'm a bit albino, and I turned around to show I had no body hair on my chest at all.

But he was not looking at my face, but down, and biting his lip as if deciding something. After a moment of his intense inspection, I finally turned around embarrassed cause I knew I was naked. I saw his reflection in the tiles ahead of me.

He nodded thoughtfully. He then said to wash down my chest, so I soaped it up good there. Then he said I can't get my butt really clean unless I bend over and get at it, and he said face the shower handles when I do it. He had such a -commanding- and polite voice, it was scary.

It reminded me of one of the counselors at Camp Crucis when Dad sent me to camp when I was 10-years old.

I remember showering there and there was a counselor who said the same thing. How to bathe cause I guess I didn't know how. To get that shower nozzle all around my the front and back of my legs as he watched.

Well, I didn't want this other fellow mad so I said yessir to him and bent over to spray it up there and then it sounded like his voice was closer to me and it sounded like he was having trouble talking and said make it nice and clean son.

I said yessir, and bent over a little more cause I was a little afraid at how close he was standing now and certainly didn't want to make him mad cause he sounded like he was getting irritated or something.

And then, right then I had a flash memory, something - I was hit by a belt in this position. Naked like I was. Suddenly I couldn't think of anything else except that terrible belt, and I cried. It was long and leather and had a big metal buckle. Sharp on the end, like a knife. It really was quite scary. I know my knees started to shake in fear so I had to concentrate to get them back under control.

* * *

To relax, I thought of the water swirling down the drain. Much like a toilet did. Because I had so much experience with them from the bullies back at school, I had to find comfort. And that was my comfort now. Watching water going down the hole. I thought I felt a hand on my back for a moment, pushing me deeper into the toilet and then the echo of laughter.

Then suddenly there was someone yelling behind me and the sound of hurried movement. I got super scared and dropped the shower thingie and it metal sproingled up against the side of the shower.

And I backed up against the shower wall myself on my knees holding my head with both hands cause I was confused and I had a headache cause it was too early in the morning and I wasn't completely awake and I still was seeing this terrible belt that wasn't there.

And that is also how I protected myself when I got in a fight with someone in school. Usually I would just crouch down and cover my head and then someone stuck their foot up against my head and told me not to move and I said yessir.

Then a bunch of classmates collected all around while the other guy still had his foot pushed against my head. Then someone took my hand and dragged me up saying, "Come on. Let's go. You know where we're going."

And in truth I did after the first few times. And I cried on the way and people patted me comfortingly on the back for being such a good sport about it. I was going to get my head swirled in the toilet with everyone watching instead of getting beat up in the hallway, and I don't know, maybe that was better.

But back in the shower, I looked which was hard to do without my glasses and it was blurry in the shower steam but I could see there were two other people talking loudly to my counselor and I heard him saying, "I wanted to make sure he's safe ! He's still a risk to himself ! I'm just doing my job goddammit, let go of me !"

And then a different man approached and handed me a towel and asked if I would like to finish bathing, and I said yessir, and he nodded and stepped back and set the towel down on the sink and said, we'll talk when you're done.

"Yessir." I said again, and I looked and it was that same woman nurse and a different man who talked to me and they both closed the bathroom door and I was alone in that metal bathroom as they stood outside and waited for me.

I finished up and stepped out in my pajama-thingie and rubbed my hair a bit cause it was still wet and it was just her and I was scared so I asked if I was in any trouble and she said, "No, David. But I need to ask you a few questions. I promise I won't keep you, and then you can go back to sleep cause I know you're tired, Okay hun ?"

"Yes ma'am." I said. And I went in her office. I hadn't been in here before so I was looking all around despite me being sleepy. And then I noticed that she had a Teddy Bear of her own on the cabinet !

I stared intently at it and bit my lip angrily. That was just so unfair ! She had one and she worked here and I couldn't have mine and I LIVED here !

"David, did he touch you in any way ?"

I was totally distracted by the Teddy Bear. It was white with a violet scarf and said TCU on the chest. Words came to my mind. I knew what TCU stood for but my brain wanted to make them out to something else. "The Cuddle Unit." How could she have a bear and I couldn't ?? My mind wandered and thought of Dad who used to work at TCU as a psychologist himself.

And Dad did used to cuddle me when I was little. Where was my Dad now ?

I then thought of the bear jumping down from the cabinet to show me his scarf and I actually reached my hand toward him on the cabinet, beckoning him to do so, waiting for the bear, because I know Teddy Bears showed me things other people couldn't see.

"David !" she said louder to get me to focus as I reaching out for empty air, "DID HE touch you ?"

Now, I remember Nancy asking me this, way back at work so I looked at her a moment and remembered she asked the same thing, but I shook my head, no.

"You're sure ? You DO KNOW what I'm talking about right ?" she wasn't going to let this go.

"Yes ma'am." I said, and then I told her about when Nancy asked me the same thing and used my hand to point at my bottom and crotch and about the woman from the lunchroom who sat so close to me while I was reading my Conan The Barbarian comic book who put her hand on my knee and her face got serious and her eyes wide as I told her and recalled the event perfectly.

As I did her face warped and folded over itself clouding over in creepy darkness. Mom told me I was seeing the true person when I did that. She called it inverting.

It scared me, but it usually only happened if I was deep in concentration on something, which is why I get very irritated when someone is talking to me when I'm busy doing something cause they're face all warps and it looks weird to me.

And that's something I've always had, eidetic recall, but only on certain things. And the reverse was true. Other things that people could normally remember, I could not for some reason.

Although my ability at perfect recall of traumatic events has often gotten me in trouble in life, especially at school cause bullies wanted me to forget the mean things they did and hated it when I remembered it so perfectly. And usually I got swirled for that too cause I wasn't supposed to remember what they did to me earlier.

They laughed and said they were brainwashing me. And I do remember being so dizzy from it all that - washing - I'd say whatever they wanted so they'd let me go and I could dry off. So in a way, maybe it did make me forget most of what they did.

Finally the nurse I was talking to looked normal again and broke the still silence by saying, "I see. That's fine, David. You won't be seeing this counselor again." and looked at my face for any indication of my being upset.

"Is it did I go and do something bad ?" I asked cause sometimes I didn't know anymore.

* * *

She tilted her head quizzically, "No, David. He wasn't - giving you - privacy. And you need your privacy when you go to the bathroom or if you are bathing, do you understand what I'm telling you ? Privacy." she smiled nicely at me like this was something new for me.

That word echoed in my head. Privacy. Suddenly I had painful memories from High School just with that one word.

When I went to go to the bathroom there the guys never gave me privacy and if I was peeing they came behind me to kick on my legs to make me pee on my underwear or if I was sitting on the toilet they sometimes came up against me from the back and stuck their bare bare butt up in my face which made me cry cause I knew it was mean and wrong.

None of those bathrooms had doors on them no matter what floor you were on so you never got any privacy at all if you had to do your business. No privacy. I mouthed the words to her.

"David ?" I heard her voice float from above. Then she murmured something as if concerned. Finally she added louder but her voice had a weird echo to it as if my brain were getting starved for oxygen cause I forgot to breathe. "Where are you now ?"

For a moment I thought I could hear the mean boys' laughter from high school because the memory was so terrible.

And I felt tears well up in my eyes, trapped in the bathroom. Looking at - well ... and yet somehow - I was reminded of snowflakes.

I peered intently ahead and saw the design of a snowflake ! Was that something I needed to know about ? The mystical design of it, the lattice network, all interwoven and spreading out in all directions with it's beautiful frozen arms in mathematical beauty and certainty. Lasting only a moment before it melted.

More vectored points than a cross ! That was VERY important to me indeed ! I reached out to carefully trace it with my finger against it as they continued to crowd around and laugh at me. But I was definitely thinking of something else than whatever they thought.

There WAS a message here ! I would much rather worship a snowflake in this life rather than a cross because it was miracle of nature and beautiful and REAL whereas the story of God and creation and stuff was something from the Bible, a history book, and not something =I= actually witnessed myself ! I was the kind of person that had to see things for myself.

And besides, my Guardian told me otherwise about creation. And I DID see her.

And a snowflake collects by the millions and creates snow, and it's beautiful ! The most beautiful thing in the world, next to Teddy Bears, of course.

But in truth I would much rather look at a snowflake in an illustrated book in the library and trace it's edges rather than the dirty thing this mean boy was shoving up against my face in the bathroom.

I felt pressure build up in my ears as I forced myself to shut out their cruel and derisive laughter from the past.

And then my memory got blurry again, something bad happened here, but I don't know what, because I blocked it out long ago. Something from Middle School.

Then a woman's stern voice. The Mother I never had. I always hear her whenever I am put into something stressful. And the same exact four words each time.

"Where do you belong ?"

"David, are you alright ... ?" she now asked with a bit of concern in her voice seeing me leaning forward slightly with my finger in the air. I was still lost in deep thought about the past.

I suddenly realized she had asked me a question and I coughed to catch my breath as I had indeed stopped breathing.

"Yes ma'am." I said putting my hand down and blinking my eyes hard and nodding my head vigorously up and down, trying to focus on what she was saying and clearing my mind of the past.

Her voice had an odd sound of concern to it seeing the way I was reacting earlier. "Fine. It is fine, isn't it David ? Are you fine now ? Can you tell me were a moment ago ?" she said watching me intently.

"You can tell me, sweetie." she added in an encouraging tone.

I was quiet. I certainly didn't want to tell her about the bullies back at school and what they did.

In the following silence she sighed. Then she spoke more cheerfully, "Starting tomorrow, we're going to transfer you to the next floor down which has less security. I think you're ready for that now, aren't you, hun ?"

I didn't care about that. I reached again for the bear in her cabinet and she noticed and she finally realized what I craved right now.

She raised her voice at me, not angrily, just louder, "David ! You can have your - toy with you when you go as I know that's important to you. You're doing well and we want you to know that we're very proud of you and the progress you're making here."

Then her tone changed to one of quiet confidence, "And we really would appreciate it if you kept this little event about one of our counselors helping you bathe, to yourself. Can you do that for us ?"

I looked her straight in the face and nodded cheerfully. Although I guess I'm breaking that agreement now by talking about it, but I always feel good getting my past out from the past and into the open. Like Sybok told J'onn in the movie:

Sybok: "Your pain runs deep."

J'onn: "What do you know of my pain ?"

Sybok: "Let us explore it together. Each man hides a secret pain. It must be exposed and reckoned with. It must be dragged from the darkness and forced into the light. Share your pain. Share your pain with me, and gain strength for the sharing."

Finally the nurse was done with me, "That's fine, David. Come on then, I'll walk you back to your room." and she put her arm around my shoulder and sorta hugged me. It was great, and I knew starting tomorrow I would be able to hold Susan as long as I wanted and that warmed me to the tips of my fingers.


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© 2013 dw817

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Oh David, you brave man. I read through this thinking how it is the predator knows to pick his victim. We need to watch our children and teach them to speak of what rings wrong for them. I know something of abuse; you are a very strong man.

Posted 6 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


6 Years Ago

I have also run from a charging lion and been mauled for it. If there is a wrong way to do something.. read more
Pryde Foltz

6 Years Ago

Life is for the learning. Life is a lion.

6 Years Ago

I think my Dad brought me up trusting too much of this world, The Lion ...
Thank you for sharing your experience here. I am moved, maybe even changed by reading this.

Posted 6 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


6 Years Ago

You're welcome. I know it's painful to do this. I never could tell my Dad what was happening at scho.. read more
very touching and every word crushed inside my heart..I'm deeply sorry you had to go through all the pain..

Posted 6 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


6 Years Ago

I guess the good news is I'm all past this. I'm fine and safe where I am now and have real friends n.. read more
I loved it I found my self geting lost in the words and just visualizing it as if it was a movie!

Posted 6 Years Ago


6 Years Ago

I tend to write like that. Same thing with the music I've composed in the past. I've been told it pa.. read more

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