Monday, December 19, 2016

it feels like

"Folks, it feels like 4 degrees out there but it's not, it's 11," says the weather girl in her thin white blouse and short skirt.

It feels like the middle of the night but it's not the clock reads 5:31 AM. I'm up trying already in my 'ski-unders', to finish sewing the legs of a sloth sock monkey that is way past due under the Christmas tree.

I know I talk a lot of about the mornings.  Saying little about the nights.  About the early winter darkness that bullies us in way before it is time.  I find like the desert, the night is stealing my words from me. It bottles them with cotton, holding them still.

"Your house feels cold, mom," my grown son says kneeling before the wood stove lighting a fire he will leave me to tend.

"Your bed feels warm, mom," my youngest says settling in for yet another night getting away with sleeping with me.

You aren't fooling anyone, his words say coming across in black and white slashes, you are not fine... I miss his handwriting.  The notes Lee used to leave on my desk on his way to the OR.  The desperation in his dark eyes; the exhaustion and fear on his stern face.

It feels I am only thinking about him because I am tired. Because after skiing my body and mind feel the same way I did after a day & a night lingering between the SICU and the operating room running with the Surgical Team.

Longjohns and scrubs insulate one from the outside forces in the same way. Skindeep costumes of woven placebos. They feel the same to slip on and the same to peel off. They pile the same on the floor in the corner.

It feels like a lifetime ago I stood in those byways and declared my intentions to go to medical school. Left behind the security of my desk in Administration to slip off to the belly of the hospital to learn the rituals.

My days were thick with textbooks and coffee  My nights reserved to hunt for interesting cases. The ER always felt too cold.  The Burn Unit, too warm. We ran fast through the naked stairwells and walked slowly down between the crowded floor beds.

It feels like a lifetime ago that I sat there in an exam room in the basement of student health once again an IV in my own arm. Dried blood caking the inside of my nose. My stomach rolling and my head pounding. Scrubs size-small floating over my wasting body.  Too many bruises spreading like summer mosquito bites across the landscape of my skin.

Dr. Judd her arm out offering me a dingy looking sheet of paper with all my lab results on it. "Misty, it feels like we need to have a serious conversation...."

It feels like only yesterday that I had to decide between what I desperately wanted and what I truly was.  It feels like 4 degrees out there- but don't worry I'm assured that it isn't nearly that cold.

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