Lemon Water

The Piece Of Glass

Heya. It is the day after the operation, and I think I’m pretty much okay.

Except for waking at 3 am this morning to discover that my foot hurt like hell, biting down on my blanket so as to not scream, and fumbling to take the painkiller and water bottle my parents had left at my night desk. Also, the foot never stops hurting- it’s like the wound is always getting stretched, no matter what position I put it through. Thank (Something) for painkillers. The pain is bearable now, though in this moment, I fear the painkiller is beginning to wear off. It will be worse when I go to sleep, because I have to put my foot on a pillow.

Well, yesterday, I left school at 12:06, and my dad took me home to get changed to clothes I could wear after the surgery- more importantly, the loose pants that would fit me fine around the bandage. Then, we went to the clinic, where my mom joined my dad and I, where we sat and waited. And waited. We went early for once, only to wait for like, two hours, till they finally called my name. But in the meantime, I met Ms. Sarria, my art teacher! That was an odd coincidence- look how small the world is.

Well, I got called, and taken a floor up by the nurse, who gave me a smock, and told me to take off all of my clothes and put it on, the hair cap, and the shoe caps. Then, because it was cold, she gave me a blanket, sat me in a wheelchair, and wheeled me into the operating branch of the clinic, past the heavy doors and out of my parent’s sight.

I got room number three for my operation. Lay down, got some strange electrodes stuck onto my skin on my right arm and on the left of my torso, and a sensor on my forehead. Then, they gave me the anesthesia, through the needle in the arm. Funnily enough, in my hand- and it hurt because they had to put the needle in pretty parallel to my hand and sideways. It was really odd to feel it move down my vein/artery, and then tape it in as the doctor assured me it would feel like “when you drink a few tragos, then you will fall asleep.” Actually, I never felt as if I was drunk, or even tipsy. I simply fell asleep after a very short while. Minutes.


When I woke up, it was very very sudden. No slow drifting into consciousness, no blissfully smooth transition- just a jolt, and I’m awake in a strange room, in a bed I couldn’t remember being put in, and a lot of pain in my foot. Now, for some reason, I had thought my parents would be allowed to wait for me to wake up, next to me. You know, like you see on tv, in that show my brother usually puts on on afternoons when I try to concentrate on my homework. No such luck for me- just a strange place, pain, and the very sudden realization that I really wanted my parents next to me. I did almost cry there for a few moments, but I calmed myself down and instead concentrated on the place around me, and tried not to move my foot. As it is, a nurse soon walked in, asked me how I was, and after learning that my foot really hurt me, turned around and made a phone call to ask whoever was at the end of the line what to do. Then, she walked out, and I heard a groan as an older woman, somewhere below my line of sight in the direction of my left foot, who it turned out was in a worse condition then I was. Then I switched my attention to my left, to the drip that was still attached to my arm, and moved my arms. Hmm, I can move them, I just feel a bit weak. Disoriented. I want to cry, because my parents aren’t there and I just moved my foot and it hurts. Then I calm down, breathe, and think about where I am. The recuperation room. I am fine, I had my operation, and I guess I’ll get out soon, since I am awake. The nurse walks in, walks to my drip, and changes the bag connection to a different liquid. She says its a painkiller, and on a scale of 1 to ten, what my pain is. I think about really bad pain, decide I’m being a bit weak, and tell her its a six. She turns and checks on the other patient, who says she is in an eight. Ouch. It sounds like she had a big operation, and the nurse says something about ribs and chest. Then she walks out.

I spend about an hour lying there, feeling wide awake thanks to the pain. Suddenly, I feel the strange wrap around my right arm begin to tighten- oh, it’s one of those blood pressure measurers, nothing to worry, though it kind of hurts. I will my hear to calm down, to stop being startled at the sudden pressure in my arm. It slowly, by little puffs, releases air and its pressure on me. It does the same, again, at least six times for the remainder of my stay- almost every ten minutes.

Slowly, my foot pain drops. The next time the nurse asks, its a four. She goes off again, after saying something on the phone about waiting till my foot didn’t hurt, answers a lot of phone calls, goes in and out of the room. I start feeling sleepy, start relaxing, to the point that the last two pressure measures don’t speed up my heartbeat, and I close my eyes and let my head drop. The nurse comes back, asks me about the pain, and I come up with a two. She then leaves, and soon, wheels me off and out of the recuperation room, asking people for a nurse who will take me to get my clothes. Everything is slightly chaotic, nobody to take me that is a woman, because it is the shift change right now. I don’t want a man to take me- I’m pretty much naked. I’m left in the bed in the hallway, and then she comes back with a wheel chair. The back of my smock is undone, and I dislike the feeling that it will fall off and leave me uncovered, but she gives me a sheet to drape behind me and around like a chal, and on the wheelchair places a thick blanket. She helps me down, slowly, making sure I don’t fall, and I hop slightly on my right foot, till I can sit on the wheelchair. She takes me near the door, leaves me, and opens and asks, “the family of *my name*?” and then comes back in. They must be paying, she says. She looks around for somebody to take me.

I get wheeled out shortly, and I see my parents. I smile, they smile, and they walk over, give me a kiss on my cheek. “I’m fine” I mumble, feeling a bit silly because this was only for my foot, and right now I really do feel fine. I don’t notice anybody but my parents right now, as they accompany me upstairs.

I can’t remember who takes me outside in the end- I know it is a man, but the person who hands me my clothes and stays with me and my parents as I awkwardly balance and change behind a screen inside the room I got changed into the smock in the first place is a woman. My mom comes behind the screen a bit later, helps me get my sock on, my sweaters, and helps me into the wheelchair. She says that when I was wheeled into the operating branch, I had a smile that made me look exactly like Anne Hathaway. The name buzzes in my name, and she tells me its the one who acted in “The Devil Wears Prada”. I watched that movie in Bolivia, with my mom, cousins and aunt, and it was my aunt who first said that about a year or two ago. It’s hard to think of myself looking like that, and the man outside the room wheels me out, into the elevator with my parents, give them a bag of painkillers and antibiotics, and helps me into the car. My dad says to me when I tell him my foot still hurts, that of course, while the cut the doctor made was small, that “they had to poke in there” to get the glass out. I get the discomforting image of open, raw meat being poked at.

Before, inside the room after I had changed, my mom pulls out a small jar, and shakes it, showing it to me and the piece of glass that had caused so much trouble as she says me that she “has a little souvenir” for me. The doctor gave it to them while I was still asleep.

When I look at the time in the car, it’s nearly eight, or nine. Something among those lines. I’m really hungry. I haven’t eaten since my breakfast. And I have been in the clinic since 1:45 pm.


I got home, ate the rice and beef my parents cooked for me and took the antibiotic I need, did my English homework (finish my “foot” describing me, and wrote my “The Book Game” entry on the feminist book Catching a Wave.) and at 12, got sent down to sleep by my dad. I put a pillow at the foot of my bed, tried finding a good position for it, and after a while, fell asleep.

I woke up again with a jolt at 3 am today, only to find my foot suddenly searing in what seemed like a very big line. I bit down on my pillow to avoid screaming, turned on the blinding lamp light and fumbled for my painkiller and the water bottle that my parents had left at my night desk.

Today, nothing special happened.

Just homework.

And I need to take my painkiller again, because it has worn off by now and I have waited the 6-8 hours since the last one I took.


Behold, the archives of the terrible Glass Shard Incident!

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7


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