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I think Sunday may have been my favorite day in the Imaginarium. I spent a lot of time coloring, and finally had a steady group of two of my favorites with me the whole time. We would spend all day chatting and giggling and forgetting where we were. Jamie was with me and I became absolutely enamored with her. I adored her from the first day. She has the most adorable way of scrunching up her face when she’s laughing and being cute. She’s as naïve and innocent as I am when it comes to drugs and people, which isn’t something I see often. I know next to NOTHING about drugs and have never been around them. I don’t often know how drugs are even taken, nor can I tell when people are imbibing and intoxicated by them. She was the same. She still couldn’t eat because of her migraine medicine, so the nurses gave her ensure so she’d at least have SOMETHING in her stomach. Because she couldn’t eat and I’m a sugar fiend, she would order me cookies every meal. During snack time, she’d bring me handfuls of Lorna done cookies.
The other super important person I met that day was Erik. He is such a kind and outstanding guy. During our conversations, I noticed how he was very understanding about what it’s like to be a woman, often like how men of single mothers are. He wouldn’t shrink when Jamie and I would talk about some women things, which is unusual for a guy. He was handsome and reminded me of a cute Artie from Glee. He, from the second he saw her, had stars in his eyes for Jamie. It was immediate. They couldn’t get enough of each other. They are currently dating and are about the cutest couple ever. I’m so happy for them, and so glad I got to see their inception. He’s a great guy and treats Jamie like the princess she is. (Erik, thank you for loving her. And yes, you do deserve her).
One of my favorite memories is when we moved to the bigger table. As we all stuck together, more and more people would join us temporarily to color for a bit. We needed more space. As we were laughing and hanging out over at the bigger table, someone asked me about my back pain. At that point I was only taking Tylenol. I made the comment that taking Tylenol for my pain was like “paying a million-dollar debt with pennies.” They thought that was the most profound statement and made me feel like the smartest person in the world for saying it. During night group, they told the whole ward what I’d said. I was horrified but laughed in embarrassment anyway. It was a great day. On Sunday, I went to bed around 10, as I’d been up since 5:45 every day. Erik and Jamie stayed up until 3 am talking and getting to know each other. I called it that day that they’d get together and stay in touch after they got out. I was right, and they’re still dating and hopelessly in love. I love seeing them together on the outside, it reminds me of when Connor and I started dating and I was hopelessly head over heels for him with fireworks and sparkles all the time. It’s amazing to see.
There was also a really odd conversation with one of the other inmates there. Her name was Mavis. She was this young girl, maybe 20 or so. She never transferred over from the green hospital gowns to regular clothes like everyone else itches to do. I don’t think she showered the entire time I was there. She was so sad looking, and you could tell she had serious issues with mental health, she needed to be in the ward. My protection instinct didn’t activate for her, she seemed almost detached and not in a good way. We were all hanging out and someone asked (I think it was me) why she didn’t transfer to clothes. She said it was because her mother’s house had bedbugs and so she couldn’t use her clothes. Now, this confused myself, Erik and Jamie because the nurses wash your clothes for you every day. I’m not sure how bedbugs would be relevant when you’ve been in the ward for weeks and your clothes are washed often. Either way, we all looked at each other in confusion and just supported her and said what a shame that all was. The support and everyone being kind is one of the best parts of the inside.
Mavis also said some super weird and inappropriate things about her boyfriend and how he liked her to eat a ton of food (she was teeny, maybe 100 lbs.) so she would get bloated. I think she also told us how she liked him to choke her. What’s that called, erotic asphyxiation? No thank you, that’s my phobia. But, she brought it up out of nowhere. It was very bizarre. I hope she’s doing okay. She told us her dad was driving up from Texas to come get her. I hope she gets the help she clearly needed, she was a sweet girl, if really odd.