Story-a-Day even when I’m out of town…

from an Inmate

I may be crazy, but that’s not why I’m here. I tell the doctors and the nurses–anyone–I feel crazy. But they pat me on the shoulder and tell me my head is fine. My head is not the problem.

I checked myself into the Asylum. Did you know that? They were shocked to see me, I can tell you. Well, I was a sight. I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry thinking about it.

Of course, having checked myself in, I can check myself out. What do you think about that? Who else in this place can do such a thing?

But how would I do that? Where would I go? What would I do? Find a corner and beg for money? No thanks.

Here I get food without humiliating myself. And I make friends. Sure, first they come by my room to see the injury. I don’t blame them. I’d want to see too. But once they realize that my injury is just below my knees, they’re quite friendly. Everyone offers to bring me things, to help me get around. One girl likes to polish my chair, and there’s a woodsman who made me a beautiful set of wooden feet. Yes, I was a bit horrified by them at first, but they really are lovely, considering.

This will sound silly, and I probably shouldn’t admit it, but I’m afraid to put shoes on those wooden feet. It’s not like they need shoes, right? It really is very nice of the nurses to bring me shoes, but I can’t bear the sight of shoes anymore. In fact, I almost never look down at anyone’s feet. Would you if you were me?

I like it here. I really do. Except for the, you know, the injury, everything about my life is better here, and since I wouldn’t be here if not for the injury…I guess I’m grateful for that too.

But do you know what would really make me happy? I hate to ask, and you can say no if you want. Really. I don’t mean to put you on the spot. But it would mean the world to me if before you left, you would, just for a minute, dance.


4 responses to “Story-a-Day even when I’m out of town…

    • I wish I had time to work on longer stories, but I do feel better getting some writing time in–even if it is less than an hour and few words. Thanks for keeping up, Niamh.

  1. Yes, that would be me: vicarious pleasure in dancing. (Except that I myself wouldn’t have been a dancer in the first place. You could say I was born with wooden feet.) I can almost see her as a ringleader of a whole cadre of “I’m not here because I belong here but because I WANT to be here” inmates.

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