I Am That Girl in the Psychiatric Unit

Most of my life plays out

and lives

in my head.

I don’t feel understood

by anyone;

but I understand the panic

that comes

with isolation.

The dichotomy between me

and me


in my ears.

Feeling alone.


every waking minute

of my


Can they feel

how human I am?

Can they see

beyond the


the medication

the shock treatment

the past

to the truth

of me?

Can they see…


Can I?


out of


I cannot

keep the middle-

Inpatient I go.

Take my shoelaces,

wrap my wounds.

Missing my home.

My family.


I am afraid.

Frightened of

appearing unwell (crazier)-

than they already

believe me to be.


this is the one

I do not

recover from.

My mind begins

to slip


with thoughts

attempting to

convince me

I take up

too much space

in this world.

Feeling worse

than I did

at the start.

It is agony-

this spiral.

these circles I spin

in my mind

pushing my brain

to the walls

of my skull.

I am exhausted.

I am done.

I am defeated.

I am alone.

Two days

spent in bed

staring out a nailed down


to the world

out there

where people can

go about

their day as if it were

just a day.




In pain.

I’m giving up.

But time passes

and lunch

is served;

I eat.

One bite,

then another.

The walls are bare

other than


in neon.

staring at me

from posterboard

as if

I am supposed

to know

how to do so

without imploding.

I have to get ahead

of this.

I have to get ahead of myself;

to save me-

though I don’t feel

I deserve

to be anything

but shamed,


ignored and

tossed away.

To live I must get




And I want to live.

I do not want

to bear

this heavy burden

of me.

When I am heavy;

drowning in

my own

torturous thoughts

it is difficult

to find the will

to swim.

How much abuse

is one person

supposed to

to take

from themselves?

Dinner arrives

I make eye contact

for the first time

in days

with the person next to me

also struggling



We connect,

We keep the words short,

but now I

am reminded-

Alone is not what I am.

I start to root for them

to feel


Which helps me

root for me

to feel


On repeat, these days


helping me relearn

to breathe.

Take a step back.

And understand


of who I am

what I am

how I am

and what I can do

to be


Comfortable in my


of those who


Leaving those

locked doors

behind me

is a test of will;

Looks fun to be

out there

with them

living their lives-

going about

their day as if it were

just a day.

But is it really?

Where do I belong?

I’m floating

Like that bag

in that movie.

The anxiety eats away

on me


as I walk


to the outside.

To where it

all starts again.

Let’s take it from the top;

shall we?

This time, however

playing out more of my life

not in my head;

for as long

as I can-

until the inevitable


Driven by my illness

throttled by my courage

to try

time and time again-

Because I can.

And I will.

Because I can.

And I will.



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