The Waiting Room | Teen Ink

The Waiting Room

March 28, 2021
By simgoh03 BRONZE, Morganville, New Jersey
simgoh03 BRONZE, Morganville, New Jersey
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

11:53 pm. Goosebumps upon my frail body, the white walls of the waiting room created the facade of hope and happiness, the cold air biting my arm. In my mind, this room was dulled by blackness. Time moved differently than it did in real life. It was as if each minute was an hour long. The waiting room was as if it was a courtroom deciding on a death sentence for your loved one.

2:10 am. There were two people in this waiting room: me and an elderly man. He leaned on his cane while sitting down, quivering. You could see it in his eyes. Those eyes were calm but, you can read the dread he had for the news if his loved one survived or not. Those warm, brown eyes had seen hell, and yet, he was still scared. We sat across the room, neither of us acknowledging each other's existence. We were not focused on ourselves but on someone else. He kept staring at the door as if the Devil was about to spring out and grab him by the throat. I tried to avoid eye contact with him and kept staring at the mute TV to the right of the two of us. Though the room was silent, the silence was loud.

3:50 am. I look at my watch. It is almost time. She should be out any second. I look up, but the man is staring right back at me. Paleness engulfed into his face like a ghost. His eyes were frozen, yet shaking.  How do I comfort an old man I haven’t met before? I can’t. The only thing I could do was move my head up and down, nod at him. He nodded back at me, a nod of assurance that everything would be okay. But, would it? Still, a sense of warmth in the coldness came over me.  For a middle school student, no one usually goes through trauma or fears like having both parents die in a car crash a year ago just to have your sister in one now.

4:00 am. Two doctors rush through the door at the same time. They both wear the same blank face, so both I and the man didn’t have to assume what happened. They split ways and go towards each of us separately. One of the doctors in a white coat stained with red comes up to me. I don’t remember what he said to me though. I only recall tears streaming down my face. I fall on the floor, bawling to the ground. Whatever he said didn’t matter anymore. She is gone. The other half of me is gone. One car ride later, and that’s it. My tears fog up my vision, but I look to my left. The old man is right next to me comforting me. His arms were around me like a warm hug. His eyes were steady in calmness now, while mine were wet. His loved one probably survived judging by his ability to stand confidently, but he still didn’t leave me. His arms were reaching out to me saying, “I am here. I understand how you feel. Someone will be here for you, don’t you worry child.” 

4:02 am. Pain took over my body, but that man stayed in the waiting room of death, just for me. 

One week later. Looking back at the waiting room, it was the worst moment of my life so far. Yet, without that old man, I would have been gone. That flashlight shining in the darkness of the waiting room flashed the light towards the beginning of an era of healing. 

The author's comments:

This piece encompasses the emotions and anxiousness of not knowing what is happening to their loved ones, which is a universal experience. It was inspired by me by those exact feelings.

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