That morning, she awakened with anxiety. This was the day for the bandage to be removed. Impatiently awaiting the doctor’s arrival, she paced her cubical room. Each time she walked past the window, she lifted a slat of the blinds, to sense the light, but never facing it. It was a nervous gesture.
She looked on her calendar, four months and seven days she’s been here. Four months and a week of not plucking her eyebrows or putting lipstick on her lips. She remembers her first realm of conciousness after the accident. The horror of being disfigured permanently. How she cried herself to sleep might after night, hoping this was all a dream.
As she sat in remembrance, she heard Dr. Drake’s voice in the corridor heading toward her.. She heard the footsteps and voices of others, too. She tried to make out their conversation, but she was too excited to listen.
Her door opened, seemingly in Slow motion. The doctor spoke as he walked in, stressing the “Good” in “Good morning”. Already, she was shaking at the anticipation of what was to come within the next few minutes. After the preliminary blood-pressure/temperature check, Dr. Drake held out his hand and they proceeded to walk to the bathroom. She closed her eyes as he removed the bandages, this too seemed to happen as if in Slow motion. She felt the coolness of the air against her face as he unwrapped each layer. It felt so sensuous.
She became so engrossed by the feeling of air on her skin, she didn’t know that the last bandage had been completely removed. Dr. Drake touched her shoulder, bent down and calmly whispered in her ear that it was alright to look now.
Trembling and grasping his hand, she opened her eyes and looked at her reflection in that hospital mirror. Tears poured down her cheeks, faster than water out of a faucet. They were the tears of joy and fear mixed into one.
She wanted a closer look – she moved toward the mirror, reaching out with one hand and as she neared the glass, she screamed.”This isn’t me! You promised I would be the same! I hate you, I hate you, I hate you!”
As then she awoke, for this was the day for the bandage to be removed.