Friday, August 29, 2008

Gourds

Yosemite Trip
We had stopped by the side of the road to buy gourds. Suddenly on a 2 lane semi-country road there was a little shack type affair with huge baskets of multi-colored gourds. It was the Fall and we were driving to Yosemite. This was to be one of our periodic celebrate the relief of the scan. Normally, when Sarah got her CT scan, we waited for a day or two, while I pleaded with the nurses for the results.
It had become one my jobs. Sarah would drink the drink, get the scan and then I would start badgering people for the results. In practice only physicians were to give out the results, but I had learned that politeness and expressions of fear by an adult male can get the results over the phone from any of several decent fellow human beings.

Sarah and I would get shaky before each scan. Somehow, getting a clean scan meant more to us than it should. We knew that. We knew that 1 minute after the scan some little tumor would grow big enough to show up. But, we were always very happy to have a clean scan.

This time I was not able to get anyone to give me the results. They kept telling me that the results were not in yet. I believed that (why?). It was late Friday. We decided to go on to Yosemite. We had a reservation at the Ahwahnee, a wonderful spot.
Sad to say, my cell phone rang. Since we were on a little road, I pulled off onto the shoulder and heard the voice of a physician. He told me the scan results showed tumors on Sarah’s liver. He was not our regular oncologist and told us that we should call her on Monday. Typical of me, I wanted to go back home. Sarah said, “Why? We’ll just be depressed. Let’s be depressed in Yosemite.” So, we went on.

I have never been back. We staggered around for a few days. We spoke briefly of death. But then we pushed that back into it’s black bag. Our oncologist called us but the floor of Yosemite is not a cell phone friendly place. She apologized for not telling us herself and gave us the pep talk that there is always something more to do and indeed we did many, many “things” over the next 4 years.

We bought some gourds, but threw them away when we got home. The trip didn’t really work out.

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