Medical Issues (Part 5 by Lifer Renee)
Renee – Only a teenager, she received a 60-year sentence. Sixteen years later, Renee is writing from Perryville prison in Goodyear, Arizona, providing a rare and unique insight into a women's prison.
Six days went by before Ms. G came to my cell with the medical list for fasting lab line at 8am. I signed the list, lay down on my bunk and stared at the ceiling in the dark. Even though I’ve become good at fighting the loneliness and keeping feelings at bay, this time I broke down. Scared, confused, not wanting to be sick any more, I cried myself to sleep.
I woke, but couldn’t have any coffee because it’s not allowed before fasting lab line. By 7.30am, I was sat on the medical bench thinking, Let’s get this over with, so I can drink some coffee.
I was called in, and told to take a chair.
“Oh, you have good veins. I don’t have to look for them.” The nurse tied my arm off and filled the vials with blood. She pulled the elastic off my arm. “OK, hon, you’re done.”
“Thanks.” I left Medical and returned to work.
It’s now been two weeks since my lab work. I still feel sick every day. Dizzy. Vomiting. Earaches. Headaches. I still get up and go through the motions every day. I submitted a HNR form to get the lab results. Who knows how long it will take. Again, I wait. Again, I tell myself, Just breathe, but it’s getting hard.