December 31, 2001

the school of dreams

I wake up before I leave the OR, before any pain medicines hit my veins. I wake up with a hurt so strong I wish they would kill me--take me back in and kill me. The agony is unbearable.

Because the surgery takes nearly seven hours, the anesthesia is light toward the end. You cannot hang that long between life and death, while anesthesia balances the body there as the soul dances in and out of the light.

This is a state of dreams. Of needing to leave behind a pain so intense that to not leave will kill you. So it's not surprising that I wake up too soon, before they wheel me into recovery, with the rawness of every cut and stich so fresh I can only gasp, "help."