I’m driving to my appointment and a thought crosses my mind.
I should visit her.
It’s been a long time since I’ve seen her and I don’t always even know where she is currently living. The location changes, sometimes quickly, and being exiled includes the consequence of information not being passed through the border of dysfunction.
I turn down the road and see the building that includes “rehabilitation” in the title. The word feels full of hope and yet this is not the reality I know.
The parking lot is currently under construction and there are no parking spots. I take it as a sign. It took me long enough to find the mental strength to do this that now I shall pay the price to the parking lot gods. I make my own spot between two garbage dumpsters. It feels symbolic.
I walk through the doors knowing that I will have to check in as a visitor. I will have to ask for her not knowing what name is registered since this too also changes periodically.
“Who you here to see?”
I say with confidence the name I believe it is and the receptionist says “Oh, is that the name or is it X”
She types in her computer and a few clicks later, she finds the name and it was the same as I gave.
I walk to the elevator and notice that it seems clean. Safe. There are an abundance of workers which makes me feel good and yet wary.
I ask a nurse if I was going to the right way to room A12 and she asks who I was there to see. I tell her and she says “Oh, she’s in the cafeteria, let me show you.”
I follow her and she points in “She’s right there.”
I see her. Her hair is disheveled, head and shoulders slumped down with eyes closed. She appears to be sleeping while time and life passes by.
I walk in passed the other residents also waiting on life to pass by.
I put my hand on her frail and thin shoulder. I raise my voice just a bit