Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for mature content.
I hate hospitals. It seems like every other day, here I am. They should just reserve this room for me and put my name on the door. But, they should take that poster of the kitten off the ceiling. It’s been there forever. I’m sure this room was meant for a child at one time because I personally find no reassurance in a kitten with wet ears.
I’ve been here for seventeen days now, this time anyway. Last time it was a month. I’m drained and I just can’t seem to shake this. I have only slept two-three hours a night since I’ve been here. These dang nurses won’t leave me alone. And, I’m telling you, if that one with strong perfume comes in here and stands in front of that fan when I’m trying to sleep one more time, I’m going to push her down the stairs. Okay, no I won’t but I’ll think about it.
My doctor was supposed to be here two hours ago. She comes in every morning to tell me I have to stay another day. And each time she says it I see that stupid kitten because I roll my eyes. She’s probably sick of me doing that but I’m sick of her telling me what to do. She’s so officious. Today I really want to go home. I've been here long enough already.
I didn’t even know I had the pneumonia, anemia, strep throat, and iron depletion when I was admitted. All I knew was, I had a sore throat and a fever. And, the fever was causing me to be delirious. I ran off the road about ten times getting to my aunt’s house and when I got there she brought me here. I’ve never been so sick in my life. Even with all the other ailments I’ve had, including other pneumonias, this is by far the worst I’ve ever been.
“Good morning Anna.” I hear Dr. Corbin sing coming through the door.
“Good morning. Do I get to go home today?” I’m going to put her through a wall if she says no. Okay, no I won’t but I’ll think about it.
“Well, I hate to tell you this but I’m concerned about the blood work drawn this morning. So, I think we need to keep you at least another day, let the antibiotics work, and do some more testing. Is that okay with you?” She is smiling. She knows that wasn’t okay with me, but what choice do I have. I pay her to make such calls. I wish I could stick to my putting her through a wall plan.
“Okay. I guess so. You’re my doctor and I trust you.” Another twenty-four hours means another two hours sleep. I just want to go home and rest.
“But, what is wrong with my blood work?”
“I’ll know more when we run some more labs.” I don’t know if I believe that she doesn't already know.
Something is tickling my foot. "What the...oh Angie, it's just you. You scared me."
She and I have known each other since childhood. We do everything together. We work and play together. No one on God’s green earth can party like Angie except maybe Stephanie. The three of us are best friends.
Angie is a small girl. She is only as big as a hand full of minutes. Blonde hair, from a box and pink eyes, from a box. She wears more make-up than anyone I know. Her hair grows fast too, so one day it's short and next month it’s long. Irritating since mine grows like a cactus.
“Sorry to wake you honey. How’s your morning? Has the doc been here yet?” She is almost as annoying as the doctor.
“Yep and I’m still laying here so you can gather what she said on your own. I’m so sick of this place. Plus, every time I get pneumonia, all of my food tastes the same. I hate this and I hate this place.” I realize I'm being hateful. “So how’s your morning?”
“Ha-ha so nice of you to be concerned with me. I spoke with Steph and she’s coming by at lunch to see you.”
Now Stephanie is one to carry on at a party. She has the party girl looks. You know, red hair that looks good combed or slept on, flawless skin so not much make-up is required to make her beautiful, and a smile that won’t quit. And, dainty like Angie.
“Good. I didn’t see her yesterday. She called though around dinner time. So, how was Jaimie’s party Saturday? Did anyone score?” I'm not talking about random sex although it has been known to happen. I'm referring to our friend Brown Sugar. She goes in our lungs or in our arms. This has been a long seventeen days but today Angie is bearing gifts.
“How does this look?” She says while holding up a needle. “I could put it in your IV.” I know she's joking. The nurses and doctors wouldn’t notice because of all the needle sticks from blood work. I usually smoke Brown Sugar but we don't want the smell here in the room. So, today is a special treat. I’ve only used the needle a few times but it always works faster than the smoke.
I began my relationship with Brown Sugar six months ago. I introduced the girls to her. She is slowly becoming my best friend. Not the first friend to enter my body that was for sure.
My friends and I hold down jobs and manage our lives and companies. Sugar doesn't seem to get in the way. Of course I don’t hang out with her except the weekends and during the week if I'm carrying a heavy load at work. Which seems a little more often these days. She helps me handle stress.
I’m watching it leave the needle. Ah yes, euphoria. Where have you been? Everything seems to move in slow motion. If this is my reward for being here in this room, I will say it’s been worth every minute.
“Anna, Anna, wake up.” Ugh it's Nurse Ratchet’s face. I wish I could shove her down the stairs.
“Yeah? What’s going on?” Hmm, I must have fallen asleep.
"It's four o’clock honey. Dr. Corbin called to let us know she’s coming to see you.”
“Hi, Anna.” She just came through the door. This time she isn't singing to me.
“Hi, what are you doing here in the middle of the day?”
“Remember I told you we needed more blood work this morning? I had some non-routine tests ran today and I have an answer to all your recent pneumonia, and overall failing health.” She's beginning to scare me putting it like that. Failing health? Yeah I had been sick a lot lately but how serious could it be?
“There’s not an easy way to say this Anna, but you’ve contracted HIV."
Wow! I'm finding it hard to breathe.
“What? Are you sure?” Oh my God! HIV? How can this be?!!
“Unfortunately I am sure. It explains your weakened immune system. Now we need to find out how you got it. Do you have unprotected sex?” How can she be so matter of fact?
Nothing like putting me on the spot.
“Sometimes.” My one word answer. I can't say another because I think I'm gonna throw up.
“Drug use? Especially needles?”
“Do you share them with others?”
“Sometimes but mainly just my friends and it’s casual.” I can't help but wonder what difference it makes how I got this. The fact that I got it is quite enough.
Dr. Corbin is so kind and sweet. But, her words cut like a knife. How could this happen? What am I going to do? How can I live the rest of my life with HIV? People like me don’t catch viruses. I’m not a bum. I’m a freakin’ lawyer for crying out loud.
“What we need to do is start you on some meds to help fight off your infections. Your immune system has been advantageous for this pneumonia. And we need to boost your appetite. Hopefully you can put on some of the weight you’ve lost.” I have lost over forty pounds but I never thought this could be why. I thought my small frame could afford to lose a little.
“That’s not all Anna. There’s more bad news.” She said. Her voice low and meek now.
I can't see the kitten because my eyes are burning with these tears. I wish I could find a lacuna in this room to get away from her voice.
How could there be more bad news? What on God’s green earth could be worse than HIV?
“You don’t just have HIV. I don’t know how long you’ve had the virus but your blood work shows that you have AIDS. And, the prognosis isn’t good this late in the game.” She should just shoot me. I really want to scream but I won't. However, I can't stop crying.
“So what do I do?” The tears are flowing down my cheeks and I’m about to scream. I don’t know if I can keep it together. “How could you let this happen? How could you miss something like HIV? Why was I not tested for this already?” I can’t help going off on her. She let this happen to me. What kind of doctor is she anyway?
The room is starting to spin and I’m about to lose it. Where is that stupid kitten? I want to look at him now but I can’t seem to see. Everything looks white.
“I’m sorry Anna. I never thought to test you for HIV. I don’t know what I could have done differently,” she’s about to cry herself. “At this point all we can do is palliative care. We’ll treat each of your infections as they come, we’ll give you anti-virals, and keep you comfortable. But, I don’t want to sugarcoat anything for you. So, I need to reiterate and tell you that your prognosis is dismal. I think you may have three months. Tops.” Her voice is trembling.
“You don’t know how long I’ve had the virus until now, when you tell me I’ve had it long enough to have AIDS? How can that be? I’ve had every test known to man and you’re telling me that you didn’t catch this until today? That’s what you’re telling me?” By now I'm not only crying, I'm yelling. How could she let this happen? Now I’m gonna die because of her stupidity. Where’s the fairness in that? This pain is insurmountable. But, she's crying too. She certainly has good bedside manner.
All I can do is cry. “God, how could you do this to me? How could you give me a death sentence before I could have a family? Before I could become a mom? How could you do this to me?” I know I keep asking the same questions over and over but I can’t help it.
“You need to contact those you’ve shared needles with and have had unprotected sex with to let them know,” she’s wiping her eyes. “I’m sorry Anna.”
“I’m thirty-five. I can’t remember everyone I’ve been with. Some I didn’t know to begin with.” Oh my God….Angie and Stephanie. How am I going to tell them?
"I'm going to leave instructions at the nurse's station that no one enters your room until we can get you to ICU. That's where you need to be to protect your immune system until we get you stable enough to go home"
All alone in the quiet I’ve been laying here, crying and I'm trying to reason with myself over this. It's too soon God. I’m not ready. There’s so much I haven’t gotten to do. So many places I haven’t seen. So many people I’ve yet to meet. And now this? How could you? How could you do this to me? What have I ever done to you? Huh? What have I ever done to anyone?
"You have a visitor." It's Nurse Ratchet with her bun and nurses uniform. The only thing uglier than that outfit is her face.
It's been a few hours since Dr. Corbin left and my room in the ICU isn't ready yet.
"Hi sweetie," It's Stephanie and she's wearing a yellow gown, mask, and gloves. "How are you? The nurse said you're supposed to be alone but I really wanted to see you. She made me put on this getup."
My tears are already flowing and I haven't began talking yet. I know I look a mess. My black hair is stringy, but at this point I've lost my vanity. How am I supposed to tell her I'm dying?
“Hey Anna,” She looks so happy. “Why all the tears? Are you upset you can’t go home? I can try to talk them into letting you come home with me so I can take care of you.”
“No honey, that’s not it. I got terrible news today and I have to tell you and Ang about it. Can you call her?”
“Sure.” She is already dialing.
We've been sitting in almost silence while waiting for Angie.
Here she comes walking through the door with the same garb Stephanie is wearing.
“What’s with this getup the nurse made me put on?” I held up my hand when she tried to hug me.
“Girls I have bad news to share with you,” my tears are falling once again but through them I continue. “The reason for those gowns and gloves and the reason I can’t get over these lung infections is because I have AIDS.”
“WHAT?” I hear their voices in unison. They are in disbelief.
“Shut up.” I've never heard such a tone from Angie. I don't think she believes me. Why would I lie or joke about that?
“It’s true Angie. I just found out. It’s advanced and Dr. Corbin gave me three months. I’m waiting to be moved to ICU as soon as the get a room ready for me.”
For the past ten minutes the three of us have been sitting here crying without talking.
Finally Stephanie spoke. “How do we give you up, Anna? What is life going to be like for us if you’re gone?”
“I have to ask you both to get tested. We’ve shared needles and that could be how I got it.”
“No freakin’ way!” Angie sounds angry. “Just because you have this doesn’t mean I do. I’m not sick and I’m not getting tested. You can keep your germs to yourself.” I have never seen her so angry in my life. Especially at me. She just abruptly left the room.
“She’s right Anna. We’re not sick.”
“You don’t have to be. You can have it for a month or two without symptoms. Please get tested.”
“How do you suppose I explain this to my family? I can’t have that test done and I’m with Angie on this one. Keep your germs to yourself.” She stomped out too.
They are acting like this is my fault. I didn't do this on purpose. How am I going to convince them to get tested?
I’m an only child and my parents were killed in a robbery two years ago. Stephanie and Angie are my only family and I need them because I don’t want to die alone.
It's been several days and I have called and texted them from my bed in ICU. I've been trying to tell them I'm going home. Not much more the doctors can do and insurance kicks the patient out after so long. But no answer. How can they be this angry with me? It’s crazy. I never meant for this to happen.
I believe in being clean but this bedroom is sparkling white. Not a spec of dust in sight because my cleaning lady, Maria, is a machine. She's here every other day cleaning and dusting my house. I've been home for a couple of weeks and no word from Angie or Stephanie. The only other person that I see besides Maria is my hospice nurse Rachel. Who is good company but she isn't my sister. My aunt Norma calls and sends me a text throughout the day but she hasn't been by yet. I think she might be afraid of me.
Aunt Norma became a second mom to me after my parents died. We were always close but she has been there when I really needed my mom. Like now. I've never missed my mom as much as I do right now.
I've been drinking protein shakes, taking vitamins, appetite stimulants, and everything else Rachel hands me but I'm still losing weight. And I started developing lesions on my face and neck while I was still in the hospital. They hurt so badly and itch like crazy. I can't scratch because that makes the pain even greater. Rachel is so officious about that stuff.
I feel like I'm all alone in this world with no one by my side. I'm scared and this fear of mortality is new. Of course I would give it thought after I’m told I’m dying. Maybe if I feared it beforehand I wouldn’t be in this condition.
Rachel is a born again Christian and she talks non-stop about her God and her Jesus and all I can do is wonder where her God was when I was given this death sentence. I haven't done anything to Him. I've minded my own business in this world. I have a good job, a good home, and up until last month a good family. Now look at me: I’m a hot mess. I don't bother anybody. Maybe I've partied a little too much. Whatever kind of God that Rachel serves isn't a God I want to meet. Why should I give Him the time of day when He obviously isn't concerned with me?
All I'm worried about right now is Angie and Stephanie. Even though they never answer their phones I know they will listen to their voice mail and read their text messages. So, I call and text all day every day begging them to get tested…..no reply.
“Rachel, could you help me sit up?” I hate depending on people. Especially people I don't really know. “My back is starting to hurt and I can't see the TV.” She is so good to me and never acts like I'm bothering her.
“Okay, put your arms around my neck, bend your knees, and push with your feet when I say go.” She tells me how to do this every time. I think I have it figured out. “One, two, three, go.”
“Ahh that hurts.” My back and sides are in a lot of pain these days. Rachel says it's pleurisy from the pneumonia. The pain goes away occasionally but I can tell when my lungs are infected when my back and rib area hurt.
“Anna, Anna,” I hear Rachel say my name. I must have fallen asleep sitting up. Man, my neck hurts. “You have a phone call.”
“Hello Peaches,” Aunt Norma has called me Peaches since I was three. I never knew why and there is no time like now. It's not like I have forever anymore.
“Hi Aunt Norma. How are you?”
“I'm fine Peaches, how are you?”
“I'm doing okay I guess. Can I ask you something?”
“Why do you call me Peaches?”
“Well, because when you were little you loved peaches.” Well that was simple and not much of a revelation. “I just thought I'd call and see how you are. I'm going to come visit this weekend if you feel like company.”
“I always feel like seeing you.”
“Okay, I'll be there Saturday. Love you honey, bye.”
It will be so nice to see her. I just wish Angie and Stephanie would come see me. I can't help but ask why they are being this way. Of all the people that could turn their back on me I never would have guessed those two. Even though they aren’t being the best of friends right now I know they love me and I know I will reach them eventually.
“Here ya go,” Rachel has my nutrition shake ready for me. I hate those things and they aren't helping. I'm losing weight so fast. “Drink up.”
God, I hate this.
“Rachel,” I can't believe I'm about to start this conversation with her. “Why do you think God is doing this to me?”
“Honey, this isn't something God is doing to you.” Rachel is a pretty girl, though a little chunky. She has blonde hair and green eyes. I've always thought that to be an odd combination. “God loves you and sometimes we go through things like this with or without Him.”
“Yeah, but why me? Why now? Why not when I'm old?” I could feel the hot tears burning my eyes.
“I don't know the answer to that. Sometimes we deal with tragedy to bring good.”
“And, what does that mean? Why would something bad bring something good. I don't understand. I'm young, I haven't had the chance to have a family of my own, I'm ambitious, caring, loyal, and giving. Why would someone like that be a target?”
“Anna, you're not a target. No one leaves this world alive. We all must experience death in one fashion or another.”
I can't find my voice anymore because I'm crying too hard. This makes no sense to me. She must be picking up on the fact that I can't talk anymore.
Rubbing my leg, “If you want to talk again just let me know.” She's going back to her job of getting clean linens for my bed. That means bath time. I love a good hot bath and she puts bubble bath in my water. It just hurts like everything to move.
Rachel asked me last week if she could play some music and I reluctantly said yes and now I'm regretting it because all it is doing is dripping 'Loving God' all over my house. One of these days I'm going to tell her what I think of this God she can't shut up about. I'm just angry because I know she's right about no one leaving this world alive.
That bath did wonders for me. I feel so much better and the kink in my neck feels better too. That must be the pain meds because I couldn't soak my neck. The hot water brings me much pain when it touches my lesions.
“You dialed my number so you know who I am. Leave a message.” That's Angie's voice mail. It's such an annoying message but it's good to hear her voice. Even if it is a recording.
“Angie, I know you don't want to talk to me. I'm begging you: call me back. I don't have long left and I really need to see you or just talk on the phone. Please call me back or text. I don't care as long as I hear from you.” I just left Stephanie the same message. I couldn't keep my voice from shaking because this is killing me. It's been a month and we talk everyday. I don't know what I'm going to do if I talk to them before I go.
Rachel must have heard me crying from the other room. “Are you okay? Are you in pain?” She rushed to my bedside.
All I can do is swallow and nod.
“It's okay. Take your time.” She is so patient. Why can't I be more like her?
Finally finding my voice, “Yeah. I just tried calling Angie and Stephanie again,” the tears streaming down my cheeks. “Why are they being this way, Rachel?”
“I wish I could answer that. The only thing I can say is after twenty years of this work, I have seen it all. Everyone deals with pain and loss differently.”
“Yeah but, this makes no sense. They got angry and stormed out of the hospital room when I told them and I haven't heard from them since.” I can't stop crying.
“Maybe they're afraid that they won't have the strength you have to deal with this diagnosis. Sometimes people tend to think 'outta sight outta mind' and it impacts them greatly.”
“But they aren't even sick. So if they have this they can get treated early to keep from dying like me.” My voice seems to raise with every word.
“This isn't fair and I shouldn't be dying. Do you hear me? Your God did this to me and I'll never give my life to Him like you say I should. Never, Rachel!”
She's just perfectly still letting me go off on her.
“You tell me why I'm here in this bed unable to wipe my own butt while still a young vibrant woman and maybe I'll give Him a chance. One good reason.”
“What is all this yelling about?” Rachel and I both could have gotten whiplash from turning our heads so fast.
“Oh, hi Aunt Norma.” I wasn't much calmer but at least I didn't scream at her.
“Hi baby, what's going on here?” As she's kissing my forehead.
“Nothing. We're just having a discussion about Rachel's God.” Rachel is back in the other room now. She left without so much as looking at me with disdain. If patience is truly a virtue, that is the most virtuous woman I know.
“Well are you okay? That seemed more than a discussion to me. Do you want me to talk to the hospice center?”
“No. She is doing a good job. I'm just upset because of Angie and Stephanie. I tried calling them again and they won't answer, return my calls, or text messages. I just took it out on Rachel.”
“I'm sure she understands Peaches.” Aunt Norma is a beautiful woman. I can tell that she is Mom's sister because they look so much alike. Tall, thin, dark brown hair (from a box), but still very youthful for a sixty-two year old.
“Aunt Norma, why do you think God is doing this to me?” I'm still crying. Today has just been one of those days.
That question is weighing on her. “I don't know Anna. Do you feel it's something God is doing to you or just a part of life?”
“I wish I knew how I really feel. I know I'm angry at Him, I'm hurting, and I'm afraid to die.” This is the first time I've admitted my fear out loud.
“I don't know much about God, but I know you're a good person and that should count for something.”
“Rachel says that's not enough and you have to be saved to go to Heaven.” I'm not crying now but I think I'm beginning to believe what Rachel is telling me.
Aunt Norma and I have talked for hours and I hate to see her go. “I love you Peaches. I'll call you tomorrow.”
“Bye Aunt Norma.” Now I'm alone again except Rachel is here somewhere and I owe her an apology.
I've lost ten more pounds. I've been doing everything I can but I can no longer hold food down. Rachel has me on nutrition shakes full time now. They are friendlier to my body than solid food. I have noticed all the bones in my body are showing and some days it is hard just getting out of bed. I've had to give up the bathroom and replace it with one of those bedside things. Rachel has to love her job to mess with that.
It has been several months since I've been able to work. What I wouldn’t give to be able to go to the office and defend one more client.
When my dad died, I inherited his law firm. I became a lawyer because I respect what my dad did and the money isn’t too shabby either. It is killing me knowing I am never going to go before another judge. The adrenaline of the job was more addictive than any pill I’ve ever taken.
My three months are almost up and I'm still alive but I can tell it won't be much longer. This disease is eviscerating my body. My friends still won’t answer their phones and I don’t care just how annoying they find me right now, I am not giving up because I don’t want to think about them being in this much pain.
I haven’t set up in bed for two weeks. It is hard to breathe sometimes but Rachel uses a suction tube to bring mucus out of my chest. It helps but not enough. What would help is if I could sit up but I’m too weak. I find it very hard to speak. My fingers can no longer point in one direction and I can't force my hands to be still.
Rachel finds a captive audience in me these days when she talks about God and I know she feels her job to do so is arduous because of my resistance. I can't talk well enough or long enough to change the subject. After months of hearing about this I'm finally hearing her.
“He loves you Anna. He didn’t come here to die for you for no reason.” Rachel is a serious looking girl. I know she means every word she has said to me. And, come to find out, proof of God is sometimes in the whisper, not in the scream.
How have I never thought about Him before? My parents weren’t religious people so I never heard any of this at home but, I grew up with a Christian next door. I’ve heard about Him in one way or another all of my life. I was never interested until now.
“If you’re not ready when the time comes, you won’t make it to Heaven. I don’t want to hurt your feelings but I wouldn’t be doing you any good if I didn’t tell you the truth. You need Him, more than your next breath.”
Right now that next breath is hard to come by. I can feel a hot tear escape my eye. She is weighing on me at this point.
I have finally reasoned within myself that death is coming and there is nothing I can do about it. It can't be stopped. I had thought in that hospital room months ago when I was given a death sentence, that no way would I be dead in three months. I’m in the prime of my life and no virus kills anyone in this short time span.
But, I’ve been wrong.
Rachel gave me a mirror one day and I didn’t know the person looking back at me. My hair looked a mess, my face looked like skin on skeleton, and that made my eyes look round and close together. I couldn’t believe what I had become. I hadn’t looked in a mirror in over a month. I didn’t want to and now I understand my reluctance. I was so vain all my life and now I look like death. I only weigh eighty pounds or so that was Rachel’s guess.
My aunt has been my only visitor since my diagnosis. I still can't reach my friends. I don’t know what made them so angry at me. I guess they weren’t too happy with facing mortality either.
The leaves outside my window are orange, yellow, and brown. Looking out at the trees helps me to put things in perspective. A party isn't what life is about. God is showing me the beauty in everything. Things I didn't notice before.
This is Saturday and I really don't feel well. I can’t catch my breath and I can’t cough. Rachel has been trying but she hasn't been able to get much out of my chest with the suction tube either. She checked my temperature a few minutes ago and it was 104.2.
“Anna, I rally think you should consider going to the hospital,” Rachel is just doing her job but I know if I go to the hospital, I'll never come home. “You're oxygen level is only eighty-five percent and I can't raise your oxygen any higher.”
“Rachel...please...call... my...friends...and...pray...for...me.” I can barely talk. And that is the first time I have ever asked for prayer.
They're rushing me to the ICU now. It's cold in here and I can feel the blowing of the ceiling vents. I had been in the ER for over an hour and all I've been treated with are IV fluids. I can no longer speak because of the breathing tube down my throat. I hear the beep, beep, beep of the machine next to me. Occasionally the machine has pauses between beeps. And, for some reason I can no longer open my eyes no matter how hard I try.
"God, I know I’ve never done this, but I’m going to be gone soon and I now believe every word Rachel has said to me. I know I’m not ready to meet you and I know this is a battle that I’m losing very fast. I’m sorry that I’ve ignored you all my life and that I haven’t listened to you. I’m sorry for being a nihilist and for all my sins past and present. I understand now that this wasn’t Dr. Corbin’s fault…it’s mine. I’ve made these stupid choices and now I’m dying because of it. I know that you don’t have to forgive me now, but I’m going to ask you to anyway. I don’t want to go to hell, I want to come home to you. I want you to forgive me so I can stand blameless before you. I thank you for placing Rachel in my life and I thank you for giving me this opportunity before I die to pray for salvation. I receive you into my heart and I’ll not ask for a miracle or healing. Thank you for giving Jesus to die in my place.”
Just as I lay relishing in my new found peace, I hear a voice…. “We don't know how long, maybe a few days. What we do know is she won't recover. This is it so you should begin with arrangements.” That is Dr. Corbin's voice.
“Okay, I'll call the funeral home and get things going. Thank you Dr. Corbin.” That's Aunt Norma.
So this is it. I'm going to die here without my best friends.
“Oh, Dr. Corbin. We all know Anna hates hospitals, would you consider letting me take her home?”
“Yes of course. I think that is what she would want so make arrangements for that as well and we'll do what we can to keep her comfortable.” I can hear the sadness in their voices.
“Anna, baby, if you can hear me, I want you to know that you're home now. You're in your bed surrounded by things and people you love.” People I love? Like who? The only people in my life are you Aunt Norma and Rachel.
“Maybe, she can’t hear you.” Another familiar voice. That's Stephanie. She's here. I can feel the tears welling up in my eyes. I just wish I could open them. I wish I could see her.
“Dr. Corbin said to talk to her Steph.” That's Angie. A tear escaped the fortress of my eyelid. “See that tear. She can hear us. “Anna, please squeeze my hand if you can hear me.”
Thank you God for bringing my sisters to me.
I can hear you. I can hear both of you.
I can’t seem to move but I feel a hand in mine.
“We love you Anna. And if you can hear us at all, we want you to know that we got tested Monday,” Monday? Last I knew it was Saturday. “And we are so sorry for getting angry with you. We love you so much.” That was Stephanie’s voice but I wasn’t sure whose hand it was.
I squeeze it anyway.