The room offered no comfort. The air blasted cold and constant, spreading out across the blue rubber of the examination bench and sinking to the ground. Diagrams of the female reproductive system were framed like public service announcements with key phrases underlined. Every corner that wasn’t sharp was probably waiting to be stuck into someone. Even the light felt sterilized.
Separated from her clothes, which were folded neatly on the counter, the young woman dried her tears with the edge of the patient gown. She sat, feet dangling from the edge of the bench and growing numb, opposite her doctor who dreaded what she had to say.
“There’s a twenty-four hour waiting period before we can perform the procedure.” She saw the girl’s eyes fog up. Her bare toes, painted with cracking purple polish, rubbed against each other anxiously as if trying to start a fire. Continue reading