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04/16/2003

Enough already

This morning I left a message for the nurse, just a progress report to let them know how I was doing: slight fever, very painful abdomen, burning when I urinate. I guess those are alarming symptoms, because the nurse called back shortly thereafter and asked that I go in that afternoon. Paul drove, and I kept up a monotonous whine as he hit every bump in the road.

I'm lovable these days.

Now, this particular nurse is very good at her job. She did not say, "My God, which rock did you crawl out from under?" She didn't even say, "You don't look so good." She said, "I'm glad we asked you to come in, because you don't look like you feel very well." May I introduce Sherlock Holmes, R.N.? Wonder what tipped her off. My unwashed hair? My red-rimmed eyes? My hollow, crazed look? The fact that I needed to be flanked on either side as I lurched down the hall to the exam room, unable to straighten up?

I then had a short visit with the doctor, who looked me over briefly, examined my nails and my skin tone, and opined that I'd had some internal hemorrhaging, but that it had stopped. Then he gently prodded my belly to see just how tender it was.

I surprised myself by bursting into tears on the table.

I mean, it hurt, but not that much.

I've simply had enough. I've been hurting for days, feeling entirely abused by the universe. I'd been completely unprepared for the pain, and don't feel that I was properly medicated for it. This was just one more indignity, one more poke, one more vigorous jack-booted kick while I was down, and I lost it for a minute.

That's what it's like. Physically, I'm holding my own; though sore and tired, I'm definitely on the mend. Emotionally, I am 100% tender, well-marbled belly. Enough with the goddamn poking.

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