I’m still stuck in this place. The room is large. White. The walls are cushions. There is a bed, a desk, and a chair. There’s nothing else. 
I’m pacing around like a polar bear on melting ice. I bite my nails—no—nevermind. I don’t have any nails to bite anymore. 
I guess the skin will do. 
I’m gnawing on that last piece of pride I have left. The one that blankets my soul so it doesn’t die from the ice-cold feeling of loneliness. 
I’m trying to find the door. Every single time I’m here, I try to find the door. I look for a handle, a knob, something that sticks out of this wall of fucking pillows. Who would have thought my dreams would take me to a psych ward? 

When I feel down, people tell me I’m supposed to go to a nice place in my mind. To close my eyes and imagine a grass field, a garden, a place where the golden sunrays multiply and birds chirp like maniacal clocks. I don’t think Eden is a place for me.
They tell me, “Relax, girl, you don’t have to picture a paradise. Just think of home.”
Home. That word always hit me the hardest. 
Aren’t I supposed to picture a safe place? Aren’t I supposed to picture a place where I don’t have to run? Where I don’t have to hide? Where I don’t have to pretend that I’m not hurting? 
There’s nothing safe about home. 
There never was. 
And so, I grab a drink, and I light a cigarette. I look outside the window, at the skyline of a city I barely know. It’s like I own the place. 
Everything the light touches is our kingdom, I hear between thoughts. 
I smile, remembering that movie I used to watch when everything was still okay. When I was still the innocent child who ran after butterflies. When I was still eager to discover the world. When I was happy.  
But I’m an adult now, so I smoke and drink like one. 
I exhale. The haze brushes against the glass, but I’m not sure if it’s the smoke or the tears that have clouded my view. 

At night, I lie down in my bed. I close my eyes and let this torrent of blame and self-loathing rock me to sleep. When I wake up again, the room is large, and the white walls are made of pillows. And there is no door. 
I’m not a patient.
I’m a prisoner. 

by Valena D’Angelis

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