Patient, Casey O’Brien, 19 yo female, DOB 12/19/95

Woman, Casey O’Brien, 19 years young.

Woman, thrill seeker, forest wanderer, theater lover , novel reader, poem writer, movie watcher, hand holder, world traveler, vivid dreamer.


Warrior,  never accepted defeat easily, willpower starting to wear thin.

Chronic illness  is a worthy adversary and sometimes I wonder if I won’t just bend under its pressure

No dramatic end, just a slow steady surrender.

Xeroxed lab sheets piling up on the desk, appointments crowding my calendar.

A blood pressure cuff packed in my suitcase alongside the sundresses,

A life spent walking florescent-lit hallways leading to too hot waiting rooms, crying babies, snoring old men.

But then I remember

The best soldiers are the ones that know when to retreat,

That backing up isn’t backing down,

And no battle was ever won alone

I am not a one woman army,

And I refuse to be a martyr


That’s when I slip a novel into my purse for the waiting room,

Because my mind isn’t sick,

My mind never will be.


That’s when I think of the future.

I stack hours until they turn into days and months

And  I climb them until I reach my destination.

That’s when  I remind myself

This too shall pass

Soon I will be back to long nights in the rehearsal room,

Typing essays on quiet Sunday afternoons,

Soon I will be back to laughing with my best friend over nothing at all.

SoonI I  will be strong again.


This isn’t a battle lost or won,

This is a war that isn’t over.

This is a war I will win.

I may be armorless, soft hearted, vulnerable, exposed,

Tears  burn my eyes red.

But they never close,

For I am aware,

I am ready,

I am watching.

I am determined.

Deep in my core is a fire that burns ever brighter

And with this,

I am forging a future in shining colors.


4 thoughts on “Patient/Woman/Warrior

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