The Things He Shattered

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 24 (v.1)

Submitted: April 12, 2013

Reads: 460

Comments: 14

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Submitted: April 12, 2013





One of the nurses comes by to change the bag of antibiotics as she has done about 3 days a week, since the nurses take turns looking after me. I think she can tell I am turning into a sad vegetable. I sit in bed, looking at the TV and do not react to much. She tries to make conversation with me. She asks me what color I like. I say "black", she asks me if I like any other color. I tell her I like dark colors. She asks me what perfume I like. I tell her I don’t know. The only name I can think of is Calvin Klein. I have used it before. I like it. I’m guessing she is trying to snap me out of the mood I am in.

I spend the rest of the day in the same miserable state I am always in now. I try to eat, but I cannot stomach anything. I throw up a few times. I limp over to the washroom in pain, and take a shower. I study myself in he mirror. I curse the person who chopped off my hair. Some women can rock hair this short, but I cannot. Someone actually spent time doing this to me.

I look at the appointment slip I was given on my last visit to see Dr. Hill. I now have 2 appointments. One is with a Dr. Wong, in 3 weeks. He is an infection specialist, and will look over my ankle. I do not expect anything good to come out of this. 3 days after that, I have another follow-up appointment with Dr. Hill, so he can probably tell me I will need to spend about a year hooked up to this antibiotic. On the appointment slip the secretary made a slight spelling mistake when spelling his name. Instead of Dr. Hill, she wrote Dr. Hell. This makes me smile. I feel this name suits him better. He’s had nothing but bad news. I try to eat, but I feel too sick to carry on. I hope that at least the antibiotic will save my foot because I’m paying hell for it.

The next day the nurse Marina comes by a little after 10am. I’m slightly annoyed because I would have preferred this to be earlier. Now it means the antibiotic will dispense and make a horrible noise well into the night.

The nurse says she is sorry. She’s holding a box, and asks me to hold on a second, because she has another one and she left it in the hallway. I’m pukeish, but I am also curious. Marina again says she’s sorry she’s late, she will change the antibiotics bag right away. She does, and it goes off and injects me with the poison. She tells me she had brought over some things for me. She takes one box, opens it and takes out purses.

"They’re supposed to look like they are designer purses and hand bags. They’re not, but they really look like they could be. My mother bought quite a few when she went to visit family overseas last year, and I thought you might like these." There are 4 bags all together. They look nicer than anything I’ve ever owned. She can see I am speechless.

"Oh and here. You said you liked dark colors, so I got my mom to make you a bracelet with dark beads."

I am still speechless. I look at the bracelet and would have never guessed this was homemade. The combination of beads is gorgeous to look at. I cannot believe someone took the time to make something so nice for me.

Marina reaches for the other box.

"Okay, and here I got you some perfume." I think if anything, there’s a small sample. But that’s not the case. There are two full bottles, and a separate box with 10 samples. It is only later when she leaves, my mother finds a rolled up receipt from one of the perfume bottles. It was on sale for $78. The 10 perfume samples, I assumed Marina had gotten as a bonus gift with a purchase. It is only weeks later, when I look through store flyers, do I find a store that caries the exact same box of samples. It will be on sale for $75. That’s more than I used to make in a day when I was able to work. I had no idea the box cost that much.

I know I may never understand why she was so kind to me. There is still some good left in the world. I tell her that when we celebrated Christmas a few weeks ago, we didn’t really have any presents.

"Well, then this will be like a Christmas for you." She smiles at me. I doubt she makes a lot of money being a nurse. The kindness she has shown me has restored in me some faith in humanity.

I think about Sheena, and her son who brought me two books and gave them to me the day after she died. He didn’t have to. Franky who worked on the disability application, and decided to post haste mailing it, even though I was no longer a patient, and she did not owe me anything. And now this nurse, who for no reason I could think of, decided to shower me with presents. In time, the perfume will be gone, but I know I will remember the kindness she showed me for however much longer I have to live.




The time comes closer to my appointment with Dr. Wong. The last day for me to have the antibiotic administered is March 7th. My appointment to see Dr. Wong is on March 9th. At this time Dr. Hill’s secretary begins to call me. The first time she calls, she tells me that Dr. Hill would really prefer for me to see Dr. Wong at a later date. My appointment with Dr. Wong should be postponed.

"Your antibiotic is discontinued on the 7th. We would prefer for it to be discontinued for at least a week, and then check to see if the infection comes back. It doesn’t make sense to wait only a day and check for an infection. The infection may not be detected so soon after. In time it can begin to spread, and there will be a possibility your foot will need to be amputated."

I tell her that, yes, I agree. She tells me she will speak to Dr. Wong about these concerns.

In the meantime I decide that since I am still on the very strong antibiotic, I will work on the scar on my stomach and even it out. By this I mean that the stitches that no one bothered to remove are noticeable. The skin has grown over them, so what is left is a long, very bumpy scar. I pick out a scalpel that I had in a chemistry set , that I had received for Christmas a long, long time ago. I wait until it is late and my parents have fallen asleep. I do not want my mother to walk into my room and catch me doing what I’m about to do. I disinfect the blade and a pair of toe-nail clippers with the alcohol wipes that had been delivered to me.

I take the scalpel and begin cutting my stomach. I cut deep enough to get at the stitches. I use a pair of tweezers to get a hold of them, and use the toe nail clippers to clip them away. After some time I feel satisfied. I clean away the blood, and I bandage everything up. I know that the antibiotic I am on will kill ‘anything and everything’. I know I will not get an infection. I am pleased, and a little angry that no one had bothered to remove them months ago.




Tina calls me a day before my scheduled appointment with Dr. Wong, letting me know that she has had no luck in getting another day. Dr. Wong insists on meeting with me on the 9th.

By this time I have already stopped believing that Doctors know best, so when the day finally arrives for me to see Dr. Wong, I am in no mood to go. I see absolutely no point in going. I imagine I’ll go, and we’ll take a bunch of tests concerning my ankle, they will come back showing there’s no infection, because they have been taken too soon after the antibiotic was stopped. I’ll have the picc line removed, and then one of the following things will happen. Just like what happened last time, the sample that is taken from my ankle will develop an ‘unknown’ bug within a week’s time. I will have to go through the entire process of having the picc line inserted back into me, all over again, and the antibiotics will start up again, resulting in me puking and itching. Or they remove the picc line and the infection begins to eat away at my bones, and the bones disintegrate resulting in my foot having to be removed.

Again my father takes the day off of work to help me get to the St. Frances’ hospital. I will find out why Dr. Wong insists on seeing me this early. I have a letter from my nurses that come by everyday, requesting for him to write down what his intentions are with my treatment. They would like him to respond and sign.


We wait in the waiting room area. I am then escorted into a private room and my parents are told to stay where they are because the room is so small. All three of us and the Doctor will not be able to fit. I sit and wait in the room, and Dr. Wong finally comes in looking over my file.

We exchange pleasantries and he quickly gets to the point.

"So you’ve had this picc line in for a total of six weeks now?"

I nod.

"We are going to take it out today."

I am extremely surprised by this. We haven’t even taken a single test.

"Do you think the antibiotic has been working? Dr. Hill is intent on keeping me on this for at least 3 months."

He looks over at me, and I can tell he is thinking of how he should say what he wants to say. I am preparing myself for the worst. He will tell me that even though these are the strongest antibiotics, they will do nothing to kill this infection. Dr. Hill tried his best. My foot will need to be amputated. I brace myself.

"You do not need the antibiotic. There is no infection."

"What?! What do you mean? I had surgery to clean it out."

"Yes, a sample was taken from your ankle when the surgery was performed. Absolutely no signs of infection were detected. You also had several scans taken of your ankle. Those alone showed no infection was present." He shrugs and looks puzzled.

"I’m guessing Dr. Hill just wanted to be very careful."

"But the first test he took back in December... The infection in the sample showed up a week later. It was an ‘unknown bug’ at first, then he said it was strep.

Dr. Wong looks at me.

"That ‘bug’ he found, could have just come off of your skin."

I now have a flashback to Dr. Hill taking that sample, and my mother pointing out that he did not even bother himself to disinfect the area. I had ignored that comment in the beginning. I had faith in Doctors then. If in the first few weeks after the fall I was surviving because of Doctors’ help, after about a month, I was surviving despite their ‘help.’ At this very moment I lose all faith in doctors. Even though at this moment I haven’t yet met or spoken to Gwen, my faith is already shattered.

Weeks later I would meet Gwen, and she would tell me,

"Basically Karina, there was nothing doctors could have done to save your life. The fact that you’re alive, and are sitting here... that’s all you."

But at this time I do not know she will say this. I just know that for the rest of my life I will never trust a doctor again with anything.

The medical ‘professionals’ in the end have caused more harm than good.

As I sit in Dr. Wong’s office I quickly replay everything in my head.

I went through hellish torture to stay alive. Nobody asked me what I wanted. If I had to pick dying or staying alive and having my lungs ‘cleaned’ constantly while I was supposed to be in a coma, I would chose death in a heartbeat. I of course was never given the luxury of having a choice. I cannot forget about the morphine that was given to me to help deal with pain I experienced from constipation that was brought on from the morphine pills that were given to me to help deal with the pain of constipation etc... Lets not forget the several month supply of antipsychotic medication that was given, and I was asked to open my mouth to show that I had swallowed it, even though I am not psychotic. And now this? Some of the strongest antibiotics on the market were injected into my body. 2 cups a day. Everyday. To kill a made up infection. I’ve had enough. Yes in the beginning their efforts contributed to good things, despite the physical hell I experienced due to their actions. But they should have stopped helping me back in October. I am grateful for the work done in Green Meadows when my casts were removed. That was useful. They should have stopped there and let me go home. But they were intent on ‘helping’, and I suffered greatly for it. It looks like many of the things my body had to endure, for example; infections,allergic reactions,pneumonia etc... were caused by doctors ' actions. Not by the fall itself. Basically doctors seemed to be treating one problem, in what appears to be a very sloppy manner, only to create more problems that I had no choice but to deal with. And people expect me to be grateful?

I guess I was just setting myself up for a lot of disappointment because in this day and age I was expecting a little bit more from doctors than to have them torture me back to life and continue to put my body through incredibly agonizing and very unnecessary treatment, all the while fooling me into thinking they were doing something good. This, right now is the last straw. I have had enough of medical help to last me several lifetimes. The bad that they have caused, outweighs the good. It outweighs it by far. Basically I had a very long list of problems caused by the fall. Unfortunately, medical staff added to this list.

I sit in this room feeling overjoyed that I will no longer be put through this antibiotic treatment, to feeling incredible anger towards Dr. Hill for putting me through this slow torture. For what? I feel anger that he had scared me senseless, bombarding me with several phone calls a day, until he finally scared me shitless into having the surgery. I am angry that he refused to administer another test, because apparently one was enough. Time was a factor, and I could not waste time taking more tests. Now looking back, his actions seem very suspicious.

Dr. Wong tells me he will do a blood test and also test me for bronchitis. He asks me how long my ankle has been swollen. I tell him it has been like this since September. It is now March. He tells me he has great doubt that the swelling is caused by any infection. He will run some standard tests, but he can already tell there is no infection, and there was no infection.

A nurse comes by to remove my picc line. It’s a long one. I had forgotten how long it was. I do remember how hysterical I had become when it was first inserted into me. Now I know why all of my intuition was screaming at me, telling me that this was wrong, as a doctorstuck the long tube into my arm.

I am not a psychic but I already know the blood tests will come back showing that no infection is present.


When I am wheeled back into the waiting area, I tell my parents that the picc line has finally been removed. Apparently there was never an infection to begin with. My father had been right all along. When I tell him, I can see he looks very displeased.

"So Dr. Hill was giving you the strongest antibiotic he could get his greedy little hands on, to kill an imaginary infection? And you have spent weeks throwing up and unable to eat. Throwing up, when you actually did eat, sometimes. And Dr. Hill was responsible for all of this, claiming that he was doing you a favor? I know what you had to suffer through, when you should have instead been recovering from falling off the 7th floor. Dr. Hill didn’t allow this, but caused you to go through something quite horrible... that’s actually very sadistic of him." My father really hit the nail on the head.

I do no see Dr. Hill three days later, like I was scheduled to. It is not surprising that I do not hear from him or his partner in crime, Tina. After all, they got what they wanted. Why were they pushing this surgery so much? Calling me several times a day until I finally gave in? Why? Who was this operation supposed to benefit? When I asked Tina to attempt to find a doctor closer to me, she called me back later saying that no one was found, I had to stick to Dr. Hill. And when I went to the emergency room, the woman doctor somehow found out that Dr. Hill was looking after this, and told me I should see him. She did the scans and the blood work that day, before I went through with the surgery. She told me she didn’t see anything that would require immediate attention. Why? Because the tests showed that there was no infection present.

Dr. Hill had all of a sudden told me I would not need a surgery on my right knee. He had initially told me that I would ‘absolutely’ have to go through with it. My knee is exactly the same. Nothing changed. But I do not need the surgery all of a sudden? It looks like Dr. Hill got what he wanted. He wanted to perform a surgery, and any kind would do.




I still have not received a single disability payment, and my family continues to struggle to pay rent and buy food. I think back on how much taxpayers’ money the hospital wasted on these antibiotics. I do not even know how much Dr. Hill was payed to ‘clean out’ my ankle. I know I will wonder for the rest of my life what the hell it was that he was ‘cleaning out.’ There was no infection, there was nothing to clean. He must have gotten a very nice paycheck provided by extremely hard working taxpayers like my father. My family could have really used that money. Instead that money was used to bring harm.

When we arrive home, I decide to finally weigh myself. I have been avoiding this for weeks because I had that bulky antibiotic device attached to me, so I knew I would not get an accurate number. I know before the surgery I had weighed 125 lbs. I weigh myself. I am now 113 lbs. I lost 12 lbs in the 6 weeks I have been on the antibiotic because I was feeling very sick for the majority of the time.

I ‘should be happy to be alive,’ they have told me over and over. I’m alive for what? So I can experience this agony? And I should be happy that I was kept alive to experience torturous unnecessary treatments? In my case,doctors' actions have proven to be insanely inhumane, andthey will continue to walk around with a very undeserved sense of importance.

To learn that such a strong antibiotic was administered into my body and caused so many unpleasant side effects, and absolutely no benefits, kills something in me. Forever.

James tells me to stay positive. To look on the bright side of life, some bullshit cliche like that. I’ll nod and smile, to fool him into thinking I agree. But I no longer do. I feel like I have nothing left. I have stayed positive before, hoping for the best, only to have my hopes crushed. Now I just hope for the best, but expect the worst. If I expect the worst, and it happens, I’ll at least be ready, and not feel completely destroyed like I do now.

I am on the waiting list for an outpatient rehab in my city. I was advised to notify them when the infection in my ankle was killed. I call, and an appointment is made for me to come and meet with them within a week. This time around I do not get my hopes up. I have absolutely no faith in this rehab like I did with the last one I was kept in. After all, the last rehab I attended is considered to be one of the best in Canada, and since Canada is the second largest country in the world, that tells me a lot. The only useful things I feel I acquired from that rehab was Franky’s help in managing my student loan, and helping me with my disability application. There was also a volunteer who would come by once a week and give me a back massage. I got a total of three free back massages. I was also signed up for ‘WheelsHelp,’ a program that sends a taxi to help me make trips all over the city I live in for a small fee. Unfortunately I do not feel I have benefitted from anything else. I hope mine is a rare case.

So now I have no expectations for this new rehab at all. This way I cannot be disappointed if I’m not expecting anything.




My appointment for rehab is scheduled for 10am, so I call ‘WheelsHelp’ to help me commute there an back. It will cost $6 every time, and I am supposed to go twice a week. I have absolutely no money to begin with, so I make charges to my credit card.

It takes over an hour just to get there. We make several stops to pick up other clients. Then drop them off. Technically, the drop off locations are on the way to my rehab, so it takes a lot longer to get to my destination. My mother always comes with me, as I cannot do it by myself. I am dependent. I was a lot more independent when I was 5.


In rehab I am shown where my schedule is written. It is on a white board. I had requested that I have one class after another, so that I will not stay over four hours. They have taken this into account. I am not scheduled for anything that will force me to stay for over 4 hours. I know I will not be able to handle anything longer than that.

My first appointment is physical therapy. The physiotherapist begins with massaging my feet. Mostly my left foot. She massages my left ankle, and it hurts, but it’s bearable, and I feel it may be helping me, so I appreciate it. The physiotherapist is a kind middle aged woman. She becomes surprised when my ankle begins to crack. She tells me that she can feel, and hear it cracking. I tell her that I know, but the pain is bearable. She in turn tries to focus more on my foot, and avoid the actual ankle. It is very nice to have it massaged, even though it does hurt. Dr. Hill told me it just needs to heal. It will start to heal when the infection is gone, but there was never an infection, so I’m guessing it has been healing for weeks. It should get better.

My next appointment is with a counselor named Julie who was the one I spoke to over the telephone, and she worked on setting everything up. She had told me she really looked forward to meeting me. I meet her and introduce myself. I can see that she looks confused. She can not seem to place my name, so I try to help her by telling her I was the one who fell from the 7th floor.

"Yes. I was expecting you." She studies my face. "Wow. You are not at all what I expected... I mean... you look a lot better than I expected."

I smile. This is something I know I will never grow tired of hearing. I have heard it many times already, and it always makes me smile. I am grateful to the doctors who put my face back together. They would be some of the few I am grateful to. I feel that the rest, Dr. Hill (or Hell) especially, did a lot more damage than good.

My parents and I begin to feel that Dr. Hill may have been pressured by Jim Lane and Mark Pedarchuck, or someone in a higher position. At the rate that Dr Hill was going, I have absolutely not doubt in my mind that my already injured body would have died. In the beginning it had suffered severe trauma. I had no chance to survive, but for some reason I did. It really wouldn’t take much to kill what was left of me, and that’s where Dr. Hill comes in. I will forever remember his panicked reaction when I asked to have another test done to check for the infection.

"No! One test is enough." I will remember those words forever. Then came his scare tactics. There is something not right when the phone calls become so persistent, and I am called up to three times a day. Scaring me senseless with threats that my left foot will have to be amputated. Dr. Wong telling me that the ‘bug’ probably came off of my skin. Everything now begins to add up. And then the blood tests I had to have done once a week, every week. My nurse telling me that some chemical level they were checking for in my blood was quite high, but for some reason Dr. Hill felt there was no need to change anything. I have also began to develop a tolerance for antibiotics. There are too many coincidences. I’m starting to think he didn’t disinfect the area on purpose so that a ‘bug’ would begin to develop. It did. The look on his face when I had requested another test. There was no time for that, the surgery had to be immediate. I was still stubborn, so the threats began. His secretary came in, until he realized she wasn’t getting anywhere and called himself. And then the strongest antibiotic that ‘kills anything, and everything’ was administered to kill an imaginary infection. The doctor in Green Meadows who told me she saw no need for immediate concern yet somehow found out that Dr. Hill was involved and advised me to speak to him.

If I ended up dying, no one but my parents would trace it back to him and blame him. As my mother pointed out, the fact that I let the investigators know that I would not rest until I saw some justice, was a threat. I realize now how stupid it was to tell them I would dedicate myself to telling my story. It would look bad. Technically, it would be better to just finish what the police officer started, before I made noise. Just kill me off. That would keep me quite, and everyone can go back to their lives.

Dr. Hill will remain a good guy in everyone’s eyes. Being ‘extremely careful,’ trying to save me from losing my foot. What an angel. Everyone would see him as being a wonderful doctor, following the rules. After all, some sort of ‘bug’ did develop ... Never mind where it came from. He was doing his job. And when it comes to me, people would say, "Well she did fall from the 7th floor... it’s surprising that she didn’t die right away. This was expected." I’d be out of the way. Case closed. My mouth would be kept shut. Forever. I realize, that to some peoples’ annoyance, I didn’t die. I remained stubborn. Although now I begin to lose strength. Literally and figuratively.

These antibiotics took a lot out of me. I had not physically recovered when they were administered. I feel that I was kicked down, just as I was getting up. I was supposed to be recovering, but I feel I was doing the opposite. I lost 12 lbs because I was throwing up so often, and I was too nauseated to eat well. I was supposed to be recovering, but I was becoming sicker.

I’m quite embarrassed to share this, but for weeks now I have been covered in acne. I mean covered. I feel like I’m going through puberty all over again times 20.

I also refuse to believe that Dr. Hill is this much of a moron. He knew exactly what he was doing. He wasn’t just being ‘extra careful.’ His secretary told me that he was the closest doctor to where I live, after I had told her that no one in my family drives. Dr. Hill would be the only one able to perform the surgery. The surgery for cleaning out an imaginary infection in my ankle can only be performed by him. I can now see why. I can now understand the urgency in his voice. He wanted to get it over and done with as quickly as possible. Not for my benefit.

And then there was the desire to keep me on medication that could not be thrown out in the garbage or flushed down the toilet, because it was toxic? It was that dangerous. Yes it would kill the infection, but what else? ‘Anything and everything.’ That includes me. I decide I will avoid seeing him at all costs. Was he pressured to ‘help’ me? There is no better word than ‘sadistic’ I can find to describe his actions.

At the rate he was going what would he propose next? Maybe chemotherapy? Sure I don’t have cancer, but what the hell does it matter? It would be better to stay on the ‘safe side.’

Unfortunately I have now managed to learn from experience, that in some cases, death is a lot more appealing than staying on the ‘safe side.’

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