Nicholas Lavender


Date: 12/08/2021

D. O. B.: 04/11/08

Patient: Nicholas Lavender

Location: Children’s Hospital New Orleans LCMC Health

Conducted by Dr REDACTED, MD: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

Read each question carefully and thoughtfully, then identify the choice that best completes the statement or answers the inquiry. If you begin to feel overwhelmed, speak to a nurse. They will help you fill out a request to finish the screening at a later date.

  1. If you, a teenage boy, aren’t really a teenage boy, then what are you?

a. A pretender; you are a horrid, nasty thing that’s mutilated itself beyond recognition in order to fool those around it. A malicious fake that hasn’t known anything other than deceit the entire time it’s been alive, one who’s so incredibly incomprehensible that it forces itself to seem more like the people around it, on the off chance that they might look past all of its flaws and see how hard it’s trying.

b. A girl; in private you smear colored powder onto your eyelids. In private you curl up on your bed with hair still wet from the shower, and you sleep.

c. A grown man; you are beyond your years. Every therapist you’ve ever had has praised your emotional awareness. You have dreams that your lungs are blackened and burnt, and when you wake you press a hand to your chest and suck in lungfuls of air like it’s your last chance to breathe. You want, more than anything, to crawl under someone’s skin and hide there – to be protected voluntarily.

       2.    Are you a makeshift patchwork of everyone you have ever known?

a. You couldn’t possibly be. Consistently throughout your life, you’ve been called “quiet.” You’ve been called “shy.” No one has ever called you “open.”

b. You cannot be something besides what you are. You don’t know what you are. 

c. You’ve never been anything else.  A kid in elementary school once said you needed to brush your hair more often. A month ago, your grandmother was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. You always brush your hair before you leave the house. You sat in the front pew at the funeral.

     3.    Who will break the promise that they made?

a. Your parents. There will come a time when you feel the weight of your life on your shoulders, and no matter how much you beg and sob and plead, they will not be able to take it anymore.

b. Your best friend. When you were eight, the two of you had an idea to run away together. At recess you both tore holes in your shirts to seem like you “belonged” on the streets; the musings of a second grader. She brought three hundred dollars to school on the day that you planned to execute it all. You chickened out. You told her, “Please, go without me.” She wouldn’t. 

c. Your first crush. He was a grade ahead, and you sat next to him in class. He was kind to you. He laughed when you made jokes. After assigned seats were switched during the next quarter, he never spoke to you again. 

      4.   What will happen when they do?

a. You will remove your teeth and claws, for you can’t bear the violence of your own anger. They’ll be dropped in jars and stored somewhere dark until they are inevitably lost to some future moving-of-house, ten years down the road.

b. You will pray. Somewhere in the endless, dusty boxes of things that belonged to your Oma, you’ll find a rosary. You will tangle it between your hands and clasp them in the same position that Oma had done, right before she died. You’ll start out speaking to God, but end up speaking to her. 

c. Shaking, outraged, and horribly weak, you will turn away.

Reread the above questions once more to be sure that you’ve answered all of them truthfully. Remember to clearly mark all of your answers, and to make certain you notify your attending physician upon completion.