“And you’re sure?” he asked.
“We usually wait a few hours and get another opinion but in rare exceptions such as this, I personally feel it is best to let the loved ones know right away.”
He had her whole body, x-rayed, there are spots on the bladder, the lungs and the brain.
“And they’re definitely cancerous?”
“For a woman her age, height and lifestyle, we can only at the minute be almost certain.”
“Ninety-nine percent.” He replied with a slight bow.
He did not want to ask.
He had to ask,
He shook his head, “There isn’t any.” In a low useless tone.
The doctor vacated after making it clear that if there’s anything he can do, he’d be around. Then he left a leaflet for grieving and many numbers to call, “I am sorry it had to be this way.” Were his final words.
His mam of all the years he had been alive was trying to speak, her face was jovial but lacked the stature be-fitting of such a woman. Her words were mumbled and made no sense, Dennis believed she was trying to make a joke.
“All I do is subsist now then eh?”
Dennis if he was asked to feel, or the more common, ‘how do you feel?’ after his usual reply of ‘fine’ trailed by, “and how are you?” He’d think to himself and conclude that he was neutral, ph 7, the Switzerland of emotions. Neither overtly sad or happy. Could smile when the good news came wouldn’t lose his shit when the bad snuck up on him. Ph 7.
He never questioned why though….
And now, staring at the empty vessel of a woman who only last week was vivacious, explosive and a dream to be around had quickly become nothing. The steroids they were giving her had the vain hope of easing her discomfort by reducing the swelling of the cancerous cells and may bring back the woman he had cherished all his life for a moment or two.
He ardently believed he wanted one last conversation with his mother. He sat waited and stared. Stared so hard she became see through. The hospital vanished and he could feel the ground swell around him and slap his face into another…