Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Through the Looking Glass....or Bong

It's been over a year since I posted anything, and not for lack of material. Stories pile themselves in my head, and it's time to type some of them out.

"Laverne" was brought back to my open room, and right from the get-go, a strong crazy vibe was palpable. I always say that there are a few trademarks of the insane:
1. Untamed female facial hair
2. Wearing a puffy coat (especially old-school Seahawks or Raiders) on a hot day
3. Insisting on representing oneself in court
4. Painstakingly reading every word of every document before signing, especially the privacy statements or discharge papers.

Laverne met #1 and #2. Probably #3, too, but I was not privy to that information.

Her chief complaint was that her husband was trying to kill her. She thought he was putting Drano in her cereal in the mornings. "Why not just stop eating food he gives you?" one might ask. And one might ask to no avail. Please see aforementioned list.

I introduced myself as usual, and started asking her why she came in today. "He scratched a death threat in my bong," Laverne answered, with intensity in her eyes.

"What did it say?" I asked.


"Laverne, I'm concerned that you may be thinking things or seeing things that aren't reality."

"Here. Let me show ya." Laverne grabbed her ratty, stained backpack, rummaged through it for a minute, and then sure enough, pulled out her bong. And a magnifying glass.

She said, "Jenny, you look right here, and use the magnifying glass, and tell me what you see."

Peering carefully through the glass, I inspected all aspects of the bong, praying that no one would enter the room during such an investigation.

"Laverne, it doesn't say anything. It's just some random scratches in the glue. There are no letters or words. From your urine, I know that you've had marijuana and meth. I think someone has probably laced one of those drugs with acid or something else that's making you see and think things that aren't real."

"Jenny, thank you for telling me that," she said. She hugged me hard, and then went on to tell me a bit about her life. She lived with constant nausea, for which she smoked pot. Marijuana is cheaper and easier to come by than prescribed anti-nausea medication for many people, so that was her preferred drug.

We talked a little more, and she told me that she knew Jesus died for her, but that she was pretty bad. I told her that's why He died--for bad people like us--so we could be free. She said, "Yes, I know," and gathered up her belongings, and shuffled out the door.
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