Guts, no glory.

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Author: Jack Kerr
Date: Feb. 7, 2022
Publisher: CMA Impact Inc.
Document Type: Personal account
Length: 1,335 words
Lexile Measure: 780L

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The clock shows 3:18. It hasn't read anything different all week. It's a tacky black and white clock, like you find in a dollar store, complete with dead batteries. Where is the nurse? I think it is my fifth night here, or is it my sixth? It doesn't really matter. I haven't left my room since I was admitted. I've barely even left my bed. Finally, the door swings open and the much-too-bright hospital light rushes in. Footsteps are accompanied by the rattle of my pain pills. The wound on my stomach throbs. I resist the urge to open my eyes. Every time I look at my stomach, I feel like I'm going to puke. If I keep them closed long enough, maybe I'll wake up at home.

Another time, another place, I wake in total darkness. The rustle of the palm trees outside reminds me I'm not in New Brunswick. My stomach immediately begins to grumble. My younger brother remains sound asleep, his chest rising and falling in an annoyingly satisfying rhythm. I am tempted to wake him. It would be a childish move for a grade 12 student, but why should I be the only one unable to sleep? It is the fourth time tonight I've had to use the bathroom. I crawl out of my bed and head toward the bathroom, passing my parents' bedroom on tiptoes. I stub my toe, hard, and it takes everything in me to stifle a scream. I continue down the hall and flick on the bathroom light. Damn, no toilet paper! I tighten my butt cheeks. My brain knows from experience that I have about 45 seconds before there is going to be a very large mess. I am now very much awake. Where would I keep extra toilet paper if I owned a Florida beach house? I check under the sink. Nope. I look over my shoulder toward the storage closet. No dice. I rush down a flight of stairs, three at a...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A691484578