Sick to death of hospitals, specialists and waiting rooms! Uncomfortable chairs, fake plants and tinny elevator music. Some rubbish that even Mum doesn’t like. Miserable looking patients, waiting for their turn to whine to the specialist about how many times they’ve thrown up this month or how they’re still afraid that IT’ll come back. IT being the cancer. Like it’s some big secret conspiracy. For me, I’m there cause I have to be – if they’d let me run the interview, it’d go a whole lot faster too – then I could go home and leave behind the pitying stares of the “support people.” Their silence speaks pretty loudly,
“Oh, he’s young isn’t he? Poor thing.” And then the tightly drawn, pathetic smile and the pitying downcast eyes as I stroll by, my thongs slapping against the regulation medical lino.
If the specialist would let me run the appointment – much faster and he’d still know what he wanted to.
“Yep, my ball is still missing.”
“Yep, scar’s healing – itchy though.”
“Yep, pickline hurts like hell, but it’s still there.”
“Yep, lost all of my hair now and the chemo still makes me feel like shit.”
“Feel like a druggie and can’t wait to get this over with.”
“What can you do for me? Well, are you a miracle worker?”
“Can you grow back a normal nut and all of my body hair? No?”
“Fine, I’ll take a Coke, ta.”
“Let’s get this scan thing done, ay? Where?”
“Yeah, I know. Drop me pants, move dick out of the way; nah I’ll do that bit thanks. You concentrate lower.”
“Hey, this chemo’s got something going for it after all – can’t get a boner when you’re this drug-fucked.”
“At least I don’t have to be praying against that under my breath the whole time you’re down there.”
“No, thank you, Doctor.”
“That will be all, see you next month.”
See? Done and dusted in minutes. Gary’s good for this though. I’ve never called him Dad, and he doesn’t expect me to, but he’s been in these waiting rooms almost as often as Mum and me. Always the same, brings his mag, but only reads it if my eyes are closed. Without that horrible pitying look, he’s ready to talk or listen to me if that’s what I want. He’s copped a fair bit of mouth from me and a fair few tears from Mum. She doesn’t cry in front of me – not if she thinks I might be listening either. She’s always like,
“Right, mate. Let’s do this, hey?”
I haven’t been embarrassed in front of Mum – if ever I have been a bit shy of stripping off, she reminds me that she’s changed more of my nappies than even she can remember and there aren’t any places that I’ve got that she hasn’t kissed better at some time. I was much younger then though, Mum! So, being Mum, she doesn’t cry to me, just to Gary when she doesn’t think we can hear her. I’ve only seen her really lose it once this whole time and that was enough to last me a long time – it was awful!