SANITARIUM, ANDERSONVILLE, IL
Davis stood in the hospital room and tried to gather together her courage.
She watched her mother closely as Louise Davis sat silently in her chair by the
window. She always sat in the same chair, never moving. Every time
Grace had come to see her, she'd always been in the exact same spot.
finally spoke as she carefully approached her. "Momma, it's me,
Grace." She'd grown to expect her mother's silence, but still found
it unnerving. No matter how many times Grace had come to visit, her mother
never uttered a word. She just sat in silence and stared out the
Grace stood next to her mother's chair, she reached out and stroked Louise's
thin, limp hair. She remembered when it had once been so lustrous and vibrant.
However, that had been years ago. Too much had happened and the evidence
of years of heartbreak and tragedy shown in her mother's appearance.
"Momma, I came to visit
you because I want to talk to you." Her thoughts turned to Trevor
Callison and the feelings she'd begun to experience for him. They were
quite odd for her and she wasn't sure what to make of them. Trevor was
beginning to make her feel things that she'd never experienced before.
What she was starting to feel
for Trevor was much different than the feelings she'd had for Dane. Dane
Manchester had been all thrill and excitement. He'd been a juvenile crush
that had obsessed her every thought. However, when his true nature became apparent,
Grace realized how foolish she'd been. And, as always, Trevor had been
there to help her through it all.
"Momma, do you remember
my friend Trevor?" She tried to force a smile as she knelt down next
to her mother and took her hand. "He's the man who's been coming with
me to see you. Anyway, he and I are very good friends. I've grown to
care for him a great deal. It's kinda funny when you think about how much
he used to get on my nerves. I spent so much time trying to push him away,
and yet he always kept coming back. He never gave up on me."
Louise's vacant eyes continued
to stare out into nothingness.
"Well, lately I've been
finding myself having these...feelings, I guess you could say." Grace
hesitated for a moment and bit her lip as she thought about the stirrings in her
heart that Trevor had begun to cause. "I-I've never really felt like
this before. I don't know what it all means. Am I falling in love
with him? Is this love that I'm feeling? Oh, Momma, I don't know
what to do!"
Tears began to well up in
Grace's eyes as she thought about how difficult it was to pretend that she and
her mother had a relationship like all of the other girls. The other girls
could go to their mothers and talk about such personal matters. Grace
desperately wanted a relationship like that. However, considering Louise's
delicate mental state, Grace realized that that was probably not
possible. She could pretend, at least. She could confide in
her mother. Maybe the simple vocalization of her emotions and fears would
lead her to an answer.
are...you? Louise's speech came weakly, but the mere sound of her voice
startled Grace. It had been so long since she'd heard her mother speak.
"Momma, it's me!
It's Grace!" Her eyes lit up. Was the haze in her mother's mind
lifting a little? Could she be able to give her the motherly advice Grace
so desperately searched for?
"Yes, Momma! It's
can't...that can't be!" Louise's eyes searched her daughter's face
for a clue as to her identity. "No!"
"Yes, Momma, I'm
Grace! I'm your daughter!" Her face beamed with joy at the
sound of her mother's voice. However, a gnawing in her gut told her that
something wasn't right. Something was wrong.
"No! You're not
Grace! You're not my Grace!" Louise quickly yanked her
hands away from her daughter as her voice grew shrill. "My
Grace is a little girl! My Grace is a baby! Who are you?
Why are you trying to convince me that you're my little girl? You can't
be my baby! Why are you doing this to me?"
Grace's eyes grew wide with fear. Her mother didn't even recognize
her! She didn't know who she was.
"Why are you doing this
to me?" Louise continued to grow more and more agitated.
"Who are you and what have you done to my baby? What have you done
with Grace?" Then, suddenly, she lunged at Grace and grabbed her by
the throat, knocking her to the floor.
screamed in fear. "Momma, don't! You're hurting me!"
my God!" Dr. Maynard said as he burst into the room after hearing Grace's
cries. "Mrs. Davis, you have to calm down! Mrs.
Davis!" He rushed to Louise's side and pulled her off of her
daughter. "Nurse! I need help!"
God." Grace sobbed as she slowly backed away from her mother in
terror. "O-oh, my god."
"Doctor, here's a sedative,"
the nurse said as she hurried into the room and handed him a syringe.
With expert skill, Dr. Maynard
injected the syringe into Louise's arm. Within moments, her agitation
ceased and her rantings ended. Carefully, the doctor and nurse eased her
back into her chair.
"Miss Davis, are you all
right?" He turned her concerned eyes toward her.
wasn't sure what to say. She'd never seen her mother like that. Not
since she was young and she'd go into her violent tantrums.
Stunned, horrified, and unable
to speak, tears began to stream down her face. This wasn't how it
was supposed to be! This wasn't the relationship she wanted with her
mother. Confused and frightened, Grace ran from the room.