I was told that I needed to begin keeping a journal by my therapist. So as I sit here staring at the ceiling not really sure what I should write about a thought has occurred to me. Why not introduce myself, I know it seems rather weird to introduce myself to a journal which I will most likely be the only one reading, but since I have to write anyways, here it goes. I am 31 years old I have two wonderful beautiful little girls who I would do anything for. I have a wonderful wife who has always been there for me through it all. I am nurse working at a prison, which is part of the reason I am required to write this journal. It all happened early last week, it was Tuesday I believe. I remember driving to work and the sun was concealed by angry black clouds massed overhead. It was cold, so cold that ice covered the windshield as I got into my Ford F-150. I sat there watch the water roll down the windshield as I pressed the window clean button on the lever for the windshield wipers. My breath escaping my lips in a grey mist as I exhaled. Finally after what seemed like forever I turned over the engine of the truck as I twisted the key so that I could drive to work. It took me twenty minutes just like any other normal day. As I exited my truck the angry clouds decided it was time to unleash their fury upon the world. The rain came down slowly with a lazy clop, drip here and there. Then suddenly it was as if the floodgate had been unleashed. The rain came down with such intensity that I could barely see where I was walking as I made my way to the entrance. I made it to the door and waited to be buzzed in as the rain soaked every inch of my 6’0″ and 230 pound frame. Finally I heard the buzzing noise which meant the door had been unlocked. I could escape from the unrelenting fury of the heavens above. As I entered the building going through three more doors before finally making it to the elevator. Again I was forced to wait at the door until the elevator was delivered to my floor. Once the doors opened I hopped on and called out to the control officer.
“Medical floor!” The doors clicked shut and I felt the elevator flying upwards to my designation. Finally now I could begin my day. My normal days consisted of interviewing inmates regarding previous medical and mental issues. It included gathering data pertaining to conditions and medications. Then my information would be passed on to Provider in the morning. From there it would be up to the Provider to order mediations or further tests. This was all done to ensure proper treatment of inmates while they were incarnated. Every so often I was required to preform a mental health evaluation on any inmate that had made threats or acted bizarre. This was one the most interesting aspects of my job. I got to see and hear things that normal people have nightmares about. I would have to assess their current state of minds. In order to determine if they were safe and be placed back with the normal population of inmates. Today it seemed as if my day was going to begin with the latter of my job duties. I barely had moved my right foot to step off the elevator unto the medical floor when I heard Veronica the Charge Nurse barking orders.
“Get me someone now, I need someone to go do a psychiatric interview for me!” Veronica was the type of supervisor and that just makes your skin crawl, she would tell everyone else what to do. More times than not it meant you were actually doing her work for her instead of doing your work. She was always quick to hand out assignments and order other people what to do. Yet when it came down to any abnormal situation occurring she magically was nowhere to be found. Then after the situation had be resolved she would magical appear. She would suddenly be barking orders and acting as if she had been there forever handling the situation. She stood at 5’4″, she was aware of how round she was and would act insulted if you accidently bumped into her wide frame. She had a habit of always needed a cigarette anytime exerted herself. Her red round cheeks would get puffy as she exclaimed that she couldn’t wait for her next cigarette. Which, I found weird that physical exertion was associated with the need of a cigarette for her. I was studying her as she seemed to be looking around for someone. In my head I just kept saying.
“Not it.” As if that might save me. On that day it did not. She glanced over and saw me walking in. Next thing I heard was her loud nasally voice yelling out for me.
“Shepherd!” I hated when she said my teeth it made me grind my teeth. “Hurry up. Oh thank God you are here. I need you to get your butt over to the 4Block. I need an inmate interviewed right away. The inmate was just brought in today. He was found wandering the streets and acting bizarre. The Booking Sergeant wants us to interview him because they said he wasn’t been cooperative. He hasn’t been following orders and anytime they ask him anything he just keeps repeating the words. My name is Silva 504-98-7896. Over and over again. They think he may have a head injury or something. They put him in a cell with another inmate and he beat the shit out him after he had only been in the room for a couple minutes. Craziness.” She barely waited for me to nod before she was already turning around muttering about finding another nurse to do her transfer paperwork tonight and needing her next cigarette. “Alright were is Beverly at? I have a job for her. And who has my lighter?” I quickly moved past her to the break room where the time clock was located. I punched my employee identification number and waited. The words punch accepted scrolled across the green led screen of the black time clock. Once I had clocked in I gathered my backpack up. Making my way back to elevator I stood waiting for it to come to my floor. Finally after what felt like forever the royal blue doors of the elevator opened up. I rode the elevator to the basement and got off once the doors slid open. Then carefully I made my way through a series of underground tunnels towards the 4Block. I saw a couple Correctional Officers waiting outside of the interview room. I waved at Officer Lizzett and Officer Reese as I quickly pulled the door open. I was greeted to an 8 foot by 8 foot room with white brick walls. The door I currently held open was colored blue and served as the only entrance and only exit out of the room. There was brown desk in the center of the room. Behind the oak desk sat a man in his early thirties from the look of him. He was wearing a yellow jumpsuit that had the word Inmate over the right breast. I wasn’t looking at the word but at the blood that was smeared all over the jumpsuit. At first glanced it seemed to just been smeared but once I looked closer it became apparent that the smears were actually symbols. Odd symbols like circles with horns protruding. I sat down in a blue plastic chair opposite the inmate. I never let my guard down a habit that I had been picked up from working in the jail. Keeping my eyes on him, I picked up his chart.
“Alright Mr. Silva tell me about yourself…”