You never had gotten used to the dull uniform. The plain white nurses outfit that reached below your knees and the gray cardigan that you wore to keep yourself from freezing to death as you worked long shifts in Mount Massive.
The uniform felt slightly snug on your bigger form. It made you feel awkward and uncomfortable. At least you've worked hard on keeping a few pounds off.
Besides the uniform and the long hours being an issue, you also found your body being an issue. For as long as you could remember, you never felt comfortable being in your own skin. The uniform made it much worse for you to focus on work. However the cardigan that you wore was the only type of protection that kept other from gawking at your body.
"I have one more task for you to take care of." A colleague of yours gave you the cart full of small trays with each small plastic cup filled with a variety of pills.
She turns around, handing you a clipboard. "Just go by what the clipboard says. And when you're finished, just bring the cart back and you're done for the evening." Giving you a warm smile.
You glanced over the sheet of paper with several names and room numbers labeled. "Thank you."
"Room number 206, 207, 208, and...209." You stopped at your next patient: Frank Manera.
You grabbed his assorted cup of medications and a small empty cup from the tray and filled it.
"Mr. Manera." You knocked on his door. "It's time to take your medications." With one free hand, you slowly opened the door to find him sitting at his bed, head lowered.
"How are we feeling this evening?"
"Okay...I guess." He mumbled.
"Well here are your pills and some water." You handed him both cups.
Within a short time, he finished, giving you back two empty cups. You gave him a smile in return. As you walked out of his room, you heard him speak up.
"A woman like you shouldn't be here."
You stopped and turned around. "Why is that?"
"This place isn't no ordinary asylum. Do yourself a favor and find somewhere else to work. Trust me."
You paused. You didn't know what to say.
You nodded. "You have a great night, Frank." Was the only thing to reply with.
"Finally. Last patient. Eddie...Gluskin." You looked up at the last door: 196. You grabbed the remaining cups and walked to his door and knocked.
"Mr. Gluskin. I have your medications." You opened the door and saw him sketching something at his desk.
He looked up and smiled. "Hello dear! What brings you here this evening?" He stood from his seat.
"Oh that's right!" He interrupted you. "Please come in, darling. I don't bite."
You gave him an awkward smile and handed him his medications.
"You look quite magnificent. Do you always look this gorgeous?"
"Oh well um, thanks? I'm sorry is that I don't get told something like that...at all." You mumbled the last two words. "But thank you for the compliment." You handed him his cup of water.
"My pleasure." He returned the empty cup.
"Well that's all that I needed for you to do. Have a nice evening."
"I must say that any man is lucky enough to have you. Do you have a boyfriend or a husband?"
"I did, but as a joke. That was a year ago. Nothing special." It ached you having to remember that memory.
A date that was suppose to go well for you, only to be laughed at. You had fallen for the person you deeply loved, only to be used for fun. You had spent the rest of the night sobbing in your bathroom. The hard rejection had left you depressed for weeks. It wasn't the first time it had happened.
"I'm so sorry that happened to you, my dear."
"Don't be sorry. I mean look at me. I don't have the ideal body that everyone wants. My body has nothing but fat sticking out. And this damn outfit!" You tried stretching out the stubborn fabric, violently. "Doesn't make it any better!" You could feel tears forming. "What did do to be treated like shit?!" You wiped your eyes with your gray sleeve.
You turned around and headed out of the room. "I-I'm sorry. I should just-"
You felt a hand reached for your wrist and pull you back into the room. You finally broke into tears.
"Don't speak anymore. You've said enough." His arms wrapped around your body.
"I just want it to stop!" You cried into his chest. "I can't deal with it anymore!"
He held you for a good few minutes until your sobbing lessened.
"I hate the way that I am."
"There's nothing for you hate on." He lifted your chin up to see his blue eyes. "You're beautiful just the way you are. I mean that from the bottom of my heart. You've been through a lot. You've made this far, why quit now? You still have an opportunity to change to yourself. It might not be tomorrow, but someday."
His hands moved down to your waist. "To me, you look beautiful. As God intended it. So promise me this." A hand reached up to wipe away the remaining tears that fell down your cheek. "If you ever need to talk to me, I'm always here. Okay?"
"Okay." You whispered.