Thousands of pictures swarmed
around my head. Soft and blurry around the edges. None of the
images would come to a clear focus. I didn't recognize any of
them. It didn't look as if they were of the same things; some
were of places, some of things. A steep precipice, a line of
rope, the blue sky above pointed mountain tops. Why am I seeing
these images? Who am I? What am I doing here? Where's
I opened my eyes.
White. Nothing but white. Bright lights came into focus as my
squinting eyes adjusted. Someone was standing over me with a
curious expression on his face. "Anna?" he asked. What? Who's
Anna? Am I Anna?
"I don't know." What a
stupid thing to say. But it was true, I really didn't
"What do you mean, you
"I mean exactly that,
I don't know. Who are you anyway?" The look on his face was first
of confusion and then of horror. Was I supposed to know this man?
For some reason I couldn't recall his name, or anything else for
that matter. What the heck was going on with me?
The strange man was
now shouting for a doctor or a nurse or anyone, as he put it, but
I could barely hear him. I needed to remember things and I needed
to remember them now. What on earth was my name? Was it Anna,
like the man said?
Then it hit me. What this man
was yelling. He was calling for a doctor, I was in the
Suddenly a man rushed in wearing
a long, white coat that billowed around his ankles as he ran. I
tried to sit up and get a better look at what was going on, but I
found that I couldn't move. Why couldn't I move? I could turn my
head and look around, but I couldn't move anything else. "Help!"
I started to scream. "Help! I can't move! Please, please help
"Anna, I need you to calm down."
The man that I could only assume was a doctor told me.
"Calm down?! I can't move and
you want me to calm down?!" This was crazy! I woke up somewhere I
don't completely recognize having no idea who I am, and he wanted
me to calm down? I don't think so, buddy.
"We're not going to get anywhere
with you freaking out, okay. So just calm yourself down." What
kind of doctor was he? Freaking out? But he made sense,
and I needed to figure out what was going on. He was probably the
only one who could help me.
"Okay," I told him, breathing
heavily. "I'm calm. Just tell me what is happening to me."
Two hours later, I was lying in
the same bed with the biggest headache I had ever had. Saying
that as a figure of speech, of course. I couldn't remember having
any headaches specifically. I remember them in general, but
All the information that was
poured into my mind made my head feel like it was about to burst.
I tried to process the information in a rational way but it only
made my head pound harder. I simply couldn't hold on to the
explanation of my past.
Apparently, I had been in an
accident of sorts. I used to be a very adventurous girl according
to what Matthew-I finally learned the man's name-and Dr. Jameson
had told me. I was climbing a cliff in the Rockies of Colorado
and fell a good distance. I was very lucky to even be alive. But
the fall had put me in the hospital for three and a half years. I
was twenty-five when it happened, so that meant that now I was
twenty-eight, almost twenty-nine. But I just couldn't grasp the
fact that I had wasted almost four years of my life lying in a
bed; whether I knew about it or not.
It also turned out that Matthew
was with me when the accident happened. He was my boyfriend. That
explained a lot. Like the reason for the look of complete terror
on his face when he realized that I had no idea who he was or
even who I was.
It's very strange, because I
remember basic things like what certain objects were and how to
do common tasks. But anything that had to do with the familiarity
of people and places, I couldn't recall a thing. I asked the
doctor about it and he told me that this kind of thing sometimes
happened and to be glad that I could still remember how to shower
by myself. His attempt to get me to smile didn't quite work,
though. I was just too worked up.
Matthew stayed by my side
through everything, the whole explaining process, and all the
medical information I was given about myself. He told me a lot
about my career as an aspiring writer and my job as a waitress at
the local Denny's. He also told me that I didn't have any brother
or sisters and that my parents had died when I was younger. This
part I suspected. I figured that if I did have some kind of
family, they would be here too.
I asked when I could be allowed
to go home and where home was.
"Well," Dr. Jameson began, "we
still have a few tests to run and then if they all come back
satisfactory, then we can let you go. From the tests we've
already taken, it looks like you'll have your mobility back in
the next couple of days. Comas sometimes cause temporary
paralysis but in the long run, you'll be just fine. Sore for the
first few days, but in the end, fine."
"We live in an apartment in
Sacramento. Lucy is going to love to see you again." Matthew said
"Lucy?" Was she a kid or
something? I would've thought that he'd have told me that we had
"Oh, right. Lucy's our Great
"Wow, isn't that a big dog for
"She loves it, trust me."
"Huh…I seem to remember that I
"You love dogs!" Matthew cried.
"And all other animals for that matter."
"Yes, I do remember
"Well that's a good sign isn't
it?" Matthew turned to the doctor with hope in his eyes.
"We can't really know for sure."
He replied. "It could be that she is gaining more and more of her
memory back as she is told about her old life, but until the
tests come back there's no way of knowing for certain."
The happy look on Matt's face
dimmed a little, but then he looked at me and smiled. "Don't
worry, Anna Banana, we'll work things out. You'll remember
everything if I have anything to say about it." Anna Banana?
Yeah, I was going to have to do something about that.
"Thanks Matt. I'm already
remembering things. Like that nickname of mine."
"What, Anna Banana?" Matt looked
at me curiously.
"Yes, I always hated it, didn't
I?" Matt looked down at his hands, embarrassed, I'd say. Good.
Maybe he won't call me that anymore. Maybe I could use this
amnesia thing for my own good. I looked at the doctor, who gave
me a questioning smile. I winked. He concealed a laugh.
"Yeah, but I always thought it
was cute." He actually looked sad.
It made me feel bad, so I
changed the subject. "So do you have any family?" I asked. We
couldn't both be alone on the world, after all.
"Yes. That was the reason we
moved to California. You see, we used to live in Colorado, where
your accident happened. But then we moved to California to be
with my family. Neither of us had any ties to anyone Colorado. We
were only attached to the mountains. You and my sister hit it off
years ago when you first met and, until the accident, were
completely inseparable. You always said that she was the closest
thing to a sister you'd ever had." Matt smiled. I managed a vague
smile back. He obviously loved his family very much. And me as
well, apparently. I felt so bad that I couldn't remember loving
him and that I would have to fall in love with him all over
again. But it also worried me. What if I didn't end up loving
him? Then what? He was my only connection to the world. I
wouldn't be able to make it without him. I couldn't just give him
up, but I also couldn't lead him to believe that I felt the same
way as he did.
"So where are we now? California
or Colorado?" I asked.
"You are in Boulder General
Hospital. Right in the heart of the Colorado Mountains." Dr.
Jameson answered my question.
"And I've been here for almost
four years?" I asked hoping I had heard them wrong the first
"Just about, yeah."