Then there were two.
The ex-teacher had her last day of radiation on Monday. She brought in baklava for the group. They were delicious, but I could only eat one bite because I could feel my blood sugar bubbling like a volcano.
It’s a little sad without her there. I’ve only got a minute or two in the waiting room before they bring me in. I appreciate the efficiency, but we barely have time to say hello. I leave the room and it’s just the ex-postal worker and the ex-Army guy alone, watching the morning shows.
I think those brief conversations between the four of us had become a highlight of our days. It made us forget about the reason we were all there. Now it’s just the news blaring. Stories about floods. Stories about crime. Turns out that’s way less fun than chatting about the gas prices. It’s less human too.
I took off my shirt and laid on the table. The tech and I talked about what we had done the night before. She went to Hendersonville to celebrate her mom’s birthday. Hendersonville is up the mountain from Greenville. She told me that one time she hit a bear on the way down. I made her repeat herself. She did. She hit a black bear on 25 South. I thanked her for giving me something else to freak out about as she left the room ad turned on the music. It was by Cardi B. I could tell because of the OKurrs. I don’t know which one. Something about money and diamonds and how there’s nothing better than checks. She really likes checks. That’s what I gathered. At least it was better than the country songs about tractors and life going on. At least this song was aspirational. I like checks too. If Cardi B can get them, so can I.
I said good bye to the ex-Army guy and the ex-postal worker. I can feel our time together slipping away. I finish radiation on Monday. I asked when they were finished. They had another week after me. It made me sad, thinking of them alone in the room together. I hoped someone interesting would take the place of me and the ex-teacher. That they would be healed by the radiation, and enjoy the human contact.
Something more valuable than checks.