They are going to judge me, he thought as he sat there in the A+E waiting room. The receptionist had given him a cold appraising stare as he gave his details about where he lived and what the injury was. He felt like a dick head, his insides all cold and heavy.
She had left him. Simple as that really. She had gone off with someone else. She had said that it was not him, it was her; but that's what they all say when they are trying to being kind to your feelings. Feelings. He snorted to himself as he sat on the sticky plastic chair trying not to catch anyone's eyes. He had argued with her, begged her, pleaded with her, tried to turn himself inside out so that she would stay. She was nice about it but resolute, he was simply not the man for her.
The pain in his chest was real. Friends and family had said things like: 'there are plenty more fish in the sea' and that he was a 'great catch' and he would be sure to find someone new soon. 'Time is a great healer' was a phrase that was bandied about like a cheap rubber ball. It's not that they didn't care, rather they didn't understand quite how much this hurt. He was certain that others had had their hearts broken but nothing like this.
Round and round like blue bottles in a glass jar his thoughts went. Round and round without resolution or solace. Like flies in a jar his thoughts kept butting up against an invisible wall where he could not be released from this jail. The pressure of his emotions kept building up inside him, in his chest, in his heart and in his brain until he felt like he was going to explode.
Upon reflection, he could not recall where he had got the blades from. They were Gillette Safety Blades for one of those old fashioned razors that you used to see in the 60's and 70's where you just changed the blade and not the whole razor. Looking down at the metal shard in his hand he felt nothing, not inside or out. He watched himself draw the blade over his skin and a red line appear. He looked on as he did it again and again, feeling nothing; seeming distant to the immediate situation. Tears of blood rolled off his arm and dripped onto the kitchen surface forming roses of scarlet. Observing without compassion as he noticed that it had gone through the layers of skin and into the fat tissue; in places he recognised the maroon stripes of muscle. He could see his muscles just by pulling at his skin, it was rather an odd feeling, a tad unusual. Still he felt nothing, no pain.
He couldn't recall when he stopped cutting but he must have done sometime. The hot sensation alerted him to something having changed. Then, pop, like a bubble bursting all of his sensations came alive again. Holy fuck, it hurt. Ouch. Looking in horror at the wasted state of his arm he grabbed the tea towel to stem the bleeding. Tears sprang to his eyes. Unable to blink them away he just let them fall onto his cheeks and his makeshift bandage. Gulping at the air a sob sprang forth from his chest, followed by another. It was as if the grief had been released from its' glass coffin and was escaping through his tears and howls. This guttural expression of loss. It was the loss of his hopes and dreams as much as his heart that was making him blubber.
"Michael Rogers?" called a business like voice from across the room.
He looked up to see a petite nurse with blond hair and brown eyes. Creaking up from the stagnant position his wait had left him in, he edged across the room, weaving in between chairs. A hot flush of embarrassment crawled up his neck as he kept his eyes firmly rooted to the floor . He mumbled and muttered answers to the questions she asked, dreading the moment she took the wrappings off his arm.
"Ok, let's have a look at your arm shall we?"
Expecting derisive comments like 'now that was silly' and 'why did you do something so stupid' he sat tensely. Then, being brave, he looked up at her face and saw her scowling; appraising his wounds.
Without tilting her head she lifted her eyes up to see him and said, "That looks sore, let's get you something for the pain and then we can see about getting this stitched."
She finished her sentence with a warming smile that made him feel ok. It made him feel like he was worthwhile, that he mattered; she wasn't going to judge him. It dawned on him that there might be a glimmer of hope that he would get through this heart ache and out the other side.
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