The day after, I sat glumly in the hospital bed, trying not to fidget but failing. At least I had my own pyjamas and not an itchy, undignified hospital gown.
The day before had been terrible. The first thing I had been treated to when I came around at the hospital was a physical and neurological exam. As if that wasn’t bad enough, they had requested for me to have a CT scan. And a few hours after that, an MRI. And all the while, they wouldn’t tell me why. They had told my mother, and the one time she had been allowed to see me she hadn’t said anything, just kept hugging me tightly, looking pale and drawn.
I had been thinking for a long time, especially through the night when I couldn’t get to sleep, about why I would need all these tests and what could have caused my collapse. I had come to a conclusion I had tried hard not to arrive at. It was inescapable.
The door to my private room opened and a doctor came in. He was the one who had run the tests. He was Doctor Daniel Roberts, MD. My mother was right behind him, and she was crying. I sat up straighter in the uncomfortable bed, not looking at the clipboard in the doctor’s hand but at my mother’s pained face. I knew it before they sat down in the bedside chairs, before he cleared his throat and told me the results of the scans were bad. Before she grabbed my hand and sobbed. Before the Doctor, Daniel Roberts MD, could tell me in his slow grave voice that I was going to die. Well, thanks for the heads up.
The rest was a blur, talks of treatment and failure statistics, the inability to perform a biopsy because of the tumour’s position in my frontal lobe and growth towards my optical nerves. And all through the blur I didn’t feel anything at all.