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A New Year’s Eve Disaster: Part 2

I open my eyes to blinding lights overhead and hear the familiar steady beep of a heart monitor. The smell of antiseptic fills my nostrils and the remaining blurriness in my eyes begin to clear.

“Hey sleepyhead, how are you feeling?” asks Jill, with a smile that does not quite meet her eyes. I notice she is still wearing her bloodstained dress and her red hair is now in a messy bun instead of the beautiful up do she had earlier, “I feel like crap, but I guess that is expected, with how much blood I lost. What happened?” she asks, as she meets the dark bags, under her bestie’s green eyes.

Jill sighs loudly, as she takes a seat in the chair next to her bed. She watches as she bites down hard on her bottom lip, drawing crimson blood to the surface. She clutches the bedsheets tightly on either side and feels a dull thrumming in her left hand. She closes her eyes and takes a steadying breath, “Sorry, I forgot to tell you about the stitches they put in your hand. It was the only way to stop the bleeding.” she says, with tears falling slowly down her bony cheeks.

I slowly lift my hand above the sheets and see that there is a small amount of burgundy blood oozing from the middle section. Bile rises up in my throat at the sight, as I turn my attention back to Jill, “I feel bad for ruining your wedding night, Jilly. I hope Ted does not hate me.” she says, as she studies her now smudged tear stain cheeks.

Jilly gives her another smile that doesn’t quite reach her eyes, “Ted is not mad at you, and he does not think you ruined our wedding. He said that he had to start learning how to share me with you and he guessed the reception was a good place to start.” she says before letting out a big yawn. She wonders how long she has been out. She scans the walls of the room for a clock and quickly finds it, hanging under the tv that’s mounted. She sees that the time is 2 am, which means she was unconscious for three hours. The thought causes the room to start spinning and she has to close her eyes to will it away.

She feels Jill’s warm hand gently grab her uninjured one, “You’ve got to breathe, bestie. In then out, in the out.” she says softly. I push myself to follow the rhythmic breathing exercises that I was taught by a psychiatrist, when I was a teenager. High School was the first time I had been diagnosed with a panic disorder. I was told it was a condition caused by high levels of stress and was a form of anxiety. At the time, I did not think that it was going to be a problem in my life. I had only had one panic attack before that, and it had been due to the pressures I felt during the SAT’s. I had felt a wave of inexplicable dizziness wash over me during the math section, which I had always struggled with in school, and then unexpectedly fainted as a result.

The whole thing had scared her parents and that is why she found herself in a psychiatrist’s office a week after the test. She thought she would overcome it on her own and then stop it from ever happening again, but it had ended up happening one more time in high school right before graduation and then a few times in college. It had been a true nightmare having to deal with it, “What did the doctor say about my episode?” she asks with a sigh. She has not had a panic attack in three whole years, and she guesses that it had a lot to do with how happy she was with Dan.

I close my eyes tight and lock the memories away in my head. I do not need to think about Dan right now or wonder what he is doing without me tonight. Worse yet, who he is doing it with. Tears begin to fill behind my eyelids and I do my best not to let them escape from the corners. I feel Jill squeeze my hand tightly, “Everything is going to be fine, Jess. I talked to the doc about everything you have been going through lately and he said he was concerned about how you cut your hand.” she says, as she bites down on her bottom lip again, “You would tell me if you were feeling like hurting yourself, right?” she asks, as a new batch of tears cascade down her cheeks.

My throat begins to tighten again, and I wonder if my life will always be defined by these episodes, “Of course, I’d tell you. All I remember when I sat there was wallowing about Dan and then somehow picking up the knife without realizing it. Maybe it was because I was angry and hurting. I don’t know.” she says, as she finally finds the courage to open her eyes, and let the gathered tears drop, “Are you saying that you did not feel the pain when the knife was digging into your hand?” she asks, as her eyes widen.

She thinks back to the moment it happened and remembers feeling overwhelmingly empty and alone. The recent breakup had been heavily weighing on her and she had been drowning her sorrows in wine, “I did not feel much at the time.” she says briefly. She feels Jill’s hand in hers begin to shake, as she gives her a nod, “I will go and find the doc to tell him you are awake and you need your stitches redone.” she says, as she quickly squeezes her hand before letting go, and standing up.

“You better be here when I get back.” she says, with a brighter smile this time. I force a smile. “Still feeling a little out of it, so you do not have to worry.” she says, as Jill nods, and walks out of the room. She sighs again knowing that there is a very strong possibility that her panic disorders are getting worse with time. Maybe the break-up with Dan had finally broken something inside her beyond repair? And a happy life like she had with him no longer has a chance of happening.

As I ponder over the conundrum that is my life, I hear the door to my room swing open. A gust of cool air swoops in and I look up to see those familiar ocean blue eyes from earlier. I take him in from head to toe and feel inexplicable fluttering in the pit of my stomach. From his dirty blonde hair just above his ears, to his chiseled jaw, and very toned body. He is quite the catch and a great distraction from everything that is going on, “You are probably wondering why I just walked into your room. I can explain. I was the one that drove you here. Jill asked me to take you because she was afraid that it being New Year’s Eve and all, that the ambulances would not get to you fast enough to help,” he says, his voice very deep and soothing. I feel my palms begin to sweat, “Thank you for getting me here.” she says with a small smile.

He gives her a nod before approaching the bed. It is the first time I notice that he has two steaming cups of coffee in his hands, “I left the hospital to go get us some decent coffee.” he says, as he places one coffee cup on her food tray, and takes a sip from the other, “Happy New Year by the way.” he blurts out and she cannot help but smile. She watches him silently fidget for a few seconds with the paper label on the cup and she finds it adorable.

In the end, while New Year’s Eve was filled with emptiness, pain, and sadness. New Year’s Day is starting off with the promise of fulfillment, hope, and love. Maybe there is a second chance at happiness in the New Year after all. 

Recommend0 Simily SnapsPublished in Drama, Romance

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