Saw the doctor today. A new one, a new place. I do not do new very well. That would be like, asking me to tie a balloon with one arm behind my back. Who am I kidding, I can’t do that at all. I am pretty sure no one can. That was a bad example. But, you get what I am saying. And if you can think of a better example, leave it in the comments. Amuse us. *smiles*
Lets get back to the story.
There I was, fidgeting in the tangerine shaded chair, alone, with no one there to answer my most pressing questions. Like “Are those children from Somalia as happy as they appear in that snap shot hanging on the wall?” and “Did you take that picture? The older one, pressing himself against that stucco wall. He looks angry” and “Those ear plastic guards, I do not know the official name of, I do not think they are sterile, look how they hang from the dispenser. Sure they are easy to grab and use on that ear stethoscope thingy-ma-bob, but they are exposed to the elements! They can’t be sterile, can they?” Sighs.
Annoying right? It is a good thing when the Doctor announces their arrival by way of a simple few knocks at the door. All those questions evaporate as quick as water tossed on a open flame. I smile and fold my arms. I am sure it is a defensive posture, or a protective one. But, the smile, friendly and bright. Encouraging. She smiles back when she enters, and pulls out the clip board. We make our introductions, and she sits. Pen in hand, and she begins to go over concerns. Even the no concerns, like how I live in a happy house, complete with two dogs and two cats. I remember now though, I forgot to tell her I have fish. No big deal, I will tell her the next time I see her.
We go over family history, the usual stuff. She wants to know the strength and weaknesses of my genetic make up. She wants to know what she is in for. This, this feels different though, the questions more personal. I can feel myself tense a little. “Is your dad still living?” I can taste the pause in the air, like cold coffee. I quickly shoot off a half smile, to comfort her or myself? I am not sure “No” came my light reply. I turn my gaze to mindlessly stare at the rectangle shaped bed next to me. The thin paper sheet pulled taut and neat down its center. The small, awkward pillow, sits at a strange angle. It was not center placed, as I thought it should be. It was placed to make the bed more inviting, to ease our discomforting thoughts. But we all know, the pillow is a lie.
I remember the moment all to well when she asked the next pertinent question. “How did he die?” my legs still crossed, left over right. Arms still crossed, right over left. I turn my head to make eye contact, the movement felt slow, as if the seconds were dragging their feet, trying to save me from the answer I was about to give her. Or to save her, from hearing it. But my eyes, ever curious, wanted to see her reaction when I answered her. So I focused on her face, which was still peering down at her clip board, and replied in a tone that was taut and neat. “He was murdered” .
Short pause. The corner of my mouth lifts, a silent apology that I had to say it. But she did ask. And I had to answer.
She looks up at me, funny now, when I think back. Her face seems blurred. I can not remember this moment at all. But, I do know, she nods her head. And she doesn’t say anything about it. She looks back down at her clip board, and proceeds onto the next question.
It was then, I decided. That I liked her, we were going to get along just fine. And next time, I will tell her about the fish.