Patient

in

I smelt trouble as soon as he walked in the door with his attitude tucked under his arm. Smug, arrogrant and grumpy. He was going to give me a run for my money, a hard time all the way i thought. How am I going to get through this exam without showing my displeasure with him. I was just getting my actress chops going - ok I'll just be really professional and not let him get a rise out of me. Then suddenly things changed, I'm not sure what I said to him, my usual litany of questions, medicines? any change in health? etc, etc. but I was just about to turn the lights off to do the eye exam when I noticed him getting teary/choked up. He told me that his wife had died in Nov. as i patted his arm and said something like "yea it takes awhile", he tells me it was Nov. of 2003. So now since he's shown me his vulnerable side,I'm being nicer to him and him to me and we get through the exam.
Later I hear the doctor say something to his scribe about him and I start talking about him to her, how he had come in all grumpy then turned on a dime and told me about his wife yadda, yadda, yadda. At which she interupts and says "he's married, he married his college roomates wife, after her husband died; and he's still cryin about the 1st wife.
People are strange...when you're a stranger....faces look ugly....
? who's song?

4 comments:

Amishlaw said...

I started reading your post, thinking "how sad," but turned on a dime and thought"how funny." Now I'm back to thinking "how sad."

Jona said...

I'm thinking it's sad too, like maybe they married each other because at least they found another person who understood the tears never stop. Thankfully the day hasn't yet come (and may never!) when I can really understand how usual/unusual this might be, but I'm thinking it must have been an anniversary of something for him...?

MB said...

Yikes. Sad. It's hard to understand the workings of someone else's heart based on so little. At least he stopped being grumpy, and your empathy probably helped him that day.

Patry Francis said...

Wow. Interesting story.