‘Are you alright?’
The phlebotomist can see my right arm shaking. The left is still too bruised from Tuesday’s tests to use. I just shut my eyes and look away and he does a really good job, but it seems to take absolutely forever before we’re done. I desperately needed to go to the loo before they called me in, and I’d had to wait 30 minutes because of an issue with a patient. In the bathroom I want to sit in the corner and cry, but hold it together long enough to get to the car.
Sitting in the waiting room, there’s a set of posters opposite: smiling people, caring nurses. I’m reminded of any one of a plethora of sci-fi films: 0% interest on an affordable loan, jump the queue, all major surgeries considered, cancer care a speciality. I feel guilt eating at me. Remember just how lucky you are. The lady opposite looks at my phone game disapprovingly. I’m sorry, I need something as distraction.
Yet again, the lovely inhabitants of social media save me from myself and the shakes, so I go eat lunch in the Gym just so I can be with people. I bump into the woman who yesterday was having the endoscopic treatment. Really is a small world, folks. My physio smiles as she passes but looks unhappy, and I want the loud and gobby woman to stop talking so I can ask the person that I care about if she’s alright. By the time I extricate from her wittering, the girl has gone, and I feel sad. When I go to PT tomorrow, I’ll go check.
My procedure is ‘routine’ surgery for the medical people. I have a pamphlet on the whole thing, like there’s one also provided for fixing my umbilical hernia. I get those in this morning’s small pile of paperwork from the Hospital. 10 Reasons to Give up Smoking before Surgery. Reducing the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis. Having a General Anaesthetic. No drinking milk based beverages and eating after midnight, lest I should turn into a Gremlin.
There’s more bloods too, on Monday afternoon, which means the only time I won’t be at the Hospital from now until O-Day is at the weekend. I’m really looking forward to a lie in on Saturday. Then I notice the card through the door, and can’t work out why Amazon would be sending anything. Once I pick up the parcel from my next door neighbour, I’m reduced to tears again, but for all the right reasons.
I already had a plan to make thank you letters whilst convalescing, and I’ll be adding a couple of extra people to the current list for their kindnesses over the last few days.
I could murder cake right now.