My Little Blue Book
Author's note: This is the first 3 Chapters, and the beginning of the fourth.
Chapter 2A bright light wakes me up, and I snicker because I forgot to close the shades on the giant glass door. Sunlight pours in and makes the light, pastel hospital walls look like a normal room: almost. There are two small windows on either side of my bed, and when I get up to go outside, I curl my toes and nearly jump back onto the warm bed instead of the chilly floor. I slide the door open and head outside. There’s dew on the grass and a light mist shrouds the view I normally enjoy. I have plenty of time before the morning nurse comes to check on me, so I take my little blue book and start to write.
MiKayla is one of the nurses here. She’s become more of a friend than a nurse. She works the night shift, and we talk a lot. I have my own “house” so the only people in this condo/apartment like hospice building are the nurses and me. She’s usually here from 5-10 in the afternoon and we hang out and watch movies a lot. She’s pretty cool and normally she keeps her emotions under control, even though I’m pretty sure seeing someone in such a sorry state bothers her. It makes me feel better when she’s around; she’s happy, smiling, and it helps me forget what’s going on when she’s around. I still don’t consider her a visitor because she gets paid while we hang out and I don’t. The rest of the nurses are nice, but MiKayla’s the only one I feel like I can open up too. For some reason I don’t trust Jill, I feel like she tells everyone what I say because after I tell her everyone seems to know. The page might seem a little wet, I’m outside and it’s misty. It smells clean and fresh out here like when it rains, I love the rain. It bothers other people and makes them feel sad, but it usually cheers me up. The sound is relaxing, and I just now realized I’ve gone ADD on you and started talking about something random. (You don’t have ADD it’s just something I say) MiKayla is a good friend, and if you’re confused by the changing handwriting, it’s ‘cause she writes down stories I tell her. Half the time when we’re watching movies we’re not even paying attention, and I’m telling her stories. The first time she wrote them down I didn’t realize what she was doing. Then I saw different handwriting and read the story I had told her. I asked her, and she said “Might as well, right? I know you ain’t been writin’ this stuff.” I laughed, and she punched my shoulder lightly.
“Kailyn? Kailyn? It’s time for your medicine! Kailyn, you shouldn’t be out here!” Janice exclaimed. I pushed my journal into the pocket of my hoodie. Janice had an unnaturally red pixie cut. She looked at me over her reading glasses, and I felt like I little kid caught doing something I know I shouldn’t. I commented on it and she smiled for a moment, but then she was like a stern parent again. She ushered me inside and made me lay down on my bed. She started reconnecting all my wires, and I grimaced at the idea of being stuck in this bed all day, Janice didn’t notice. She injected my pain medicine into the IV and I sighed, she finally noticed my unhappy expression.
“What’s wrong, dear?”
“I can swallow pills,” I grumbled. “You don’t have to give it to me through an IV.”
I crossed my arms and gave her my best grouchy look. She muttered something about taking it up with my doctor, and I rolled my eyes as she walked away. MiKayla had told me that after fifteen minutes I could disconnect the IV and I wouldn’t waste the medicine. I flipped channels for twenty minutes before I disconnected my wires and went outside. I knew it would only be about two minutes before Janice or Jill or even Bethany was back. I sat outside breathing in the fresh air, hoping that maybe I’d soak up some sun and look a little bit less like a shut-in. I didn’t realize how much time had passed because when a nurse came it was already ten and they had my breakfast. I skipped toward the room and Kaleb, the only male nurse that I saw, smiled at me. Kaleb was really nice and I was glad he thought of me as a friend, he had started to confide in me lately.
“It’s amazing what some vitamin D can do, isn’t it?”
I nodded and sat down at the end of my bed to eat. Today, I was having an omelet, but I wished I was having a bowl of cereal for once. Kaleb sat and chatted with me while the fog outside evaporated. It was warming up and we moved outside. He talked about school and his plans for becoming a doctor. He was also glad that I was here and he didn’t have to push someone around in a wheelchair. I smiled at him; I understood that being surrounded by old people who were sick and dying could be depressing. I was sick and dying, but at least I was closer to his age. Most of the nurses that worked with me were in their twenties and then Janice was like thirty-nine. He told me that every now and then he stayed and worked a little bit of overtime to see MiKayla. I nodded and listened, not surprised. I had seen the two of them walking around together.
That night I talked to her about it and set the two of them up on a date. She told me all about it the moment she got back on duty. They were dating now, they had been for nearly as long as I’ve been here, and both of them asked me for advice. I was happy things were working out for them. He left and I went back to writing down things I thought were important. I hadn’t realized how much time had passed until I heard a quiet knock on the door.
“Hey, Kailyn,” MiKayla started walking in, “I’ve got some great news.” I sat up and waited for her to say something. I could tell she was crying and she held up her left hand. I could feel my jaw drop and she smiled at me.
“No way! Omygoodness this is amazing! When did he ask?” I squealed. She bounced up and down then came and described everything to me. We talked about the wedding for the rest of her shift. When she left, she was still smiling.
I was happy for her and that kept despair from filling me. I didn’t want to think about Alex, but I couldn’t help it. Something told me that I would’ve been the one telling my friends, and they would’ve been freaking out when they saw the ring. Alex would’ve made sure that I had a great story to tell them. He would’ve done something crazy romantic and better than perfect. I stopped that train of thought before I became too sad. I shrunk into my jacket and twisted my bracelet around my wrist again and again. It was a silver bracelet that Alex had given to me when we first started dating and I rarely took it off.
I looked at the picture that was sewn into the lining of the hoodie and ripped it out so I could paste it into the journal on the page that was all about Alex. The sun had set, but I didn’t need light to tell you about the picture; it was the two of us on the beach, and it looked like a Valentine’s Day card. The sun was setting behind us and we were shadows so you couldn’t tell it was us. We had been talking quietly, he was whispering in my ear, and after the lady showed it to us Alex had paid her for the picture. Thinking about Alex made me sad, and being sad made me feel exhausted. I stopped that train of thought in an attempt to preserve some energy, but I was tired anyway, so I curled up with the journal and let myself slip into a light uneasy sleep.