This was the view Brenda had after regaining consciousness. Laying on the cold sidewalk, eyes blurry and unable to focus. She could feel a pulling on her right side and through her half closed right eye, she could see a shadowy figure, kneeling beside her and realized that someone was rummaging through her jacket pocket. With all the strength she could muster, she heaved her body away but could tell the effect was little more than a muscle flex.
“What the fuck is happening”, she thought. She could hear a siren, but it felt like it was a thousand miles away, off in a distant country or barreling towards another world, maybe better, maybe worse.
The warmth exuding from her forehead, must be blood, but her arms were still not working, she wasn’t able to test it with the fingers on her hand. The figure by her side was gone now, leaving her feeling suddenly alone and vulnerable.
Trying to sit up, proved to be impossible and she was still unable to roll onto her back or even her side. So she lay there and cursed the sky, the slowly refocusing building above her.
Laying there she cursed the city that had abandoned her to the streets three years ago, when her landlord had her evicted so he could pretend to renovate and double the rent. She cursed those that had called her crazy, when she felt good and went off her meds, she cursed the hospital staff that refused her treatment because they assumed she just wanted in from the cold, she cursed the cops that woke her up and made her move along when she grabbed a nap at Union Station or in the underground PATH. She cursed the driver of the car that rolled through the stop sign at Mutual and Gerrard, hitting her and sending her eight feet sprawling her across the wide sidewalk.
But she smiled when the ambulance pulled up and the two EMS jumped out and seemed to actually care as they assessed her wounds and treated her with respect.