Detoxification Ward

Essay by Patricia_KatCollege, UndergraduateA-, February 2004

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Detoxification Ward

What is a place that smells like fear and tastes like sadness? A hospital. Hospitals are either a place great to go to or a place of sadness. The joy of a hospital is when my sister had her first child in a hospital, but my mother was in and out of the place for detoxification. The surroundings, the scent, the sight, and what I heard were not my ideal hospital visits. I wanted to be in the hospital to celebrate, not to be upset. The hospital was always a scary place for me, because it has always been a place of sadness, such as this one.

My sister, Jessica, and I went to visit our mother in the detoxification ward at Overlook Hospital in North Plainfield, New Jersey. I cannot remember the date for mom had been in there often. It was a sad visit, but not the first.

I was so used to being there and expecting where she would end up, it became a normal. The smell of rubbing alcohol filled the room, it reminded me of a doctors office. The look of the hospital is creepy but where our mom was, was even worse.

"Yes, how can I help you?" the women said on the opposite side of the heavy steel door. "We're here to see our mother, Sharon Gallagher," we said. As we walked in, we noticed nurses and security everywhere, not to mention all the other staff inside the protection-proof booth in the middle of the locked-down ward. The booth was where the 'staff' was with the cross-lined glass. They needed identification from Jessica and I. We were to be searched and watched to ensure we did not give mom anything. It was not the type of place I wanted be.