Yet another anniversary of my crash loomed. Often I don’t know the date. This year I asked. And, unbidden, one of the fears, the dominating fear, the fear of never being able to go home, came back. And this was fear; a long way from anxiety.
Does that fear haunt me, dog me still? Perhaps. I hope that these days I can call on enough – strong enough – rationality to counter it. But thinking about it still makes me want to cry.
Hospital Noise (Fear, Part Five)
A lasting memory of hospital – the rehab ward – is noise. The regime is all about resting and recuperation. Indeed, about rehabilitation. But the noise in a ward is significant. The beeps of monitoring machinery. Nurses having to make regular rounds, sometimes to administer drugs are regular times, sometimes to monitor the ward in general.
Sometimes there will be a crisis; something goes unexpectedly wrong for someone, for some reason.
And drama aside, of course the patients make a noise. Sometimes, a lot of noise. From groans of pain to suppressed tears, sobs. Snoring. Coughing. Groaning out loud. And there are mobiles and the attendant chatting. And some patients will moan and snipe, to anyone in earshot, about anything and everything – not least how they’re being treated.
Noise to rattle the brain of the brain-damaged. I so wanted peace and quiet. And they tried. After a while they put me in a small side-room of my own. But I so wanted to go home. I was so, so scared that I would never go home. An all-overriding rationality-banishing fear.
Arguably … it is probably understandable that the negative impact of being in hospital on the hospitalised often isn’t countered. The practical realities of ward life quite probably prevent it, compounded hugely by costs. That each individual’s perceptions and needs will vary to some extent, surely, makes it genuinely impossible.