Ladisa Quintanilla: Plans

Spring '08 TOC

          You didn’t plan this.  And you do like to make plans.  You’re the sort of person who’s pleasant to be around, the planner of fun at every office potluck and birthday celebration, the person who keeps others going.  Even on rainy days smiles follow you.  So when the doctor said there was nothing to the pain you said you felt in your left thigh, you believed him.  And on your next visit, you smiled still as did he.  “I’m ok,” you thought, because that serious man said so.  And after all, being okay was your plan all along.  He must be right.  It’s nothing.
         Then when the stretch jeans you finally splurged on stretched over one thigh tighter than the other, you made a call.  “Oh, this is just a tightened muscle,” said the serious man who kept your plans intact.  “I’m ok,” you thought, because.
         Then when the silky oriental patterned skirt your husband splurged on you didn’t slide over the growing lump on your thigh, you made a different call.  This man was as serious as the other, but his plans differed from yours.  “You have cancer,” he said.  The man may have told you he was sorry, he may have held your hand, he may even have told you everything would be okay.  You don’t recall.  You have cancer.
         Then alone in a sterile room your plans changed.  The surgeon draws an X on your bulging left thigh with a thick black marker and writes “NO” on your good leg.  You stare at your X-marked leg only it’s not your leg anymore.  You wonder how this came to be.  The surgeon leaves.  A nurse walks in clutching a syringe in her right hand. 
         “I’m okay?” you say.
         “I’m okay,” you say.

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Not Enough Night
Not Enough Night
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