Q; In 600 words or less tell me about a special occasion in your life.
A Special Occasion.
My most treasured occasion was the birth of my first child. Paige had been a surprise instalment to my plans for the future, for a start I had never planned on having any children at all. The closer the event came the more I began to realise Paige was going to be special. With only two months left we found ourselves in hospital under close monitoring and confined to the hospital bed. Now a day I’d enjoy the rest and read a book, but at that time I was seventeen. I had never liked hospitals – the echo sounds down each bland corridor, that unmistakeable “I’m very clean” smell that even made our school changing rooms seem inviting in comparison. To me the worst thing was how lonely the hospitals make you feel. Rookwood hospital had those long wards like in the old black and white movies my dad watched, it was like looking down two train carriages, the tall windows gave that broken light effect you get on the moving train only it was as still and silent as a photograph, I could barely see the nurses’ station at the end it. They insisted on me staying in the bed and I insisted on at least getting dressed and lying on top of the bed. They saw an annoying teenager and I saw condescending adults. It’s the tone in our voice not the words we ever said to each other that made our stand very clear – this was going to be the longest six weeks on record.
Nurse Arkhem was to be my arch-nemesis; she was as stern as she looked in her dark blue well pressed dress with classic flat white shoe. When she passed by your blood turn cold, her eyes did that scanning thing you imagine cyborgs do in sci-fi movies, and she moved as silently as a ghost. Our first battle was the make-up “you don’t need that on in here, go and wash it off” she said as I put the final touches to a perfectly mascaraed set of lashes. “The trick is not to blink, not to move at all” I responded as if she had actually asked the question I wanted her to ask me. As I regarded my left eye in my little bed side mirror a heavy smell of flowers suddenly assaulted my nose and I looked up to see that Nurse Arkhem had moved without actually moving at all, all the way from the end of my bed right up to my bedside table. “In an emergency the doctor will only wish to perform one procedure to remove something not two.” Still stunned by the magic trick my response was slower than its normal teenage wit generally reserved for answering my dad. “well, when you feel like a hippo with a bad case of indigestion what are you to do but try to cheer yourself up with TLC” I shrugged and gave her my most honest looking face, “you will have years of Halloween face painting ahead of you I’m sure, now, please go and wash it off” she handed me my soap and face cloth out of the top draw as if she had been the one who had put them in there. Spooky!