Thursday, October 18, 2012

Rose #6 - The Kindness of Strangers

Days whizzing by like they don't exist, my doctors tracking me down while I'm visiting in Jade's room to tell me I'm ready to be discharged (code for 'hey lady you're off the IV, so your insurance thought it would be a good time to stop paying for around the clock care'). I ask politely if I'm allowed to stay in Jade's room with her - they tell me, of course I can.

Lucky for me Jade's nurses have an in with the cafeteria, so I'm set up for meal deliveries. Good thing because when I tried strolling down to the caf with my walker in tow it took me almost 20 minutes to make a round trip just for a coffee and donut.

I remember watching people walk by me and feeling jealous that they could hustle to their next destination. I didn't want to feel jealous but I did. Of course, jealous though I may have been, I also recall feeling proud as hell of my walker (or my Ferrari as I liked to call it). 

The first walker I'd been issued from the hospital was a standard silver model with legs that came to a rubber stopper on the end like a cane. The one I ended up with by virtue of Jason's late Grammy, however, made me feel like the debutante of the hospital halls. This thing was fancy - metallic red with a built-in seat, an attached cup holder, 2 sets of wheels, and best of all, a set of hand brakes to keep me from rolling down the handicap ramp.

Thing was sick.

The fuzzy haze of Dilaudid that helped me find the glee in a stylish walker didn't last forever though, and before I knew it I was writing depressing poetry about whose fault I felt the crash was and the frustration of Jade's tennis match recovery and changing discharge date:

I'm mad, I'm sad, I'm happy, I'm fine, I'm sick of this roller coaster ride. We're here to stay, we're going home, she ate enough, she's skin and bones. "It's not your fault, it's just bad luck," I feel like a stupid, idiot fuck. I want to go back, I want to rewind, take the wheel, and not be blind. This sucks, I hate it, I ruined her life, it's stabbing me inside out like a knife. Look on the bright side, don't be sad, it won't forever be this bad. Okay, I get it, it's totally mistake...and so my bad.

After several false starts, being told we'd be going home the next day only to be told she'd lost too much weight and would need to continue to stay I began to lose hope and any desire to take a stab at literary device apparently...

Hope was waning thin.

All I could see was pain and what ifs. It's not like Jason didn't say he was tired. He woke me to tell me, actually. My reply: 

"If you need me to drive let me know."

This is the type of sentence that will get stuck on repeat in the mind. This is the type of sentence that did get stuck on repeat - it got stuck on repeat and it sucked the faith I had in myself right out the window. With it my faith in others dwindled too - how can you have faith in others if not in yourself?

But then, a knock on the door:

"Hi there, are you Sass?"

Seeing me nod with a look of confusion the woman at the door explained that she was Ethan's aunt, Lori.

I had to rack my brain..who the hell was Ethan??

And then it came - Jason's sister's boyfriend.

"Oh, yea, hi! Ethan seems like a really nice guy - what can I do for you?" I asked still slightly confused.

"I'm a nurse. Have been for 20 years. Ethan told me about what happened to your family, so I just wanted to come by to let you know that it does get better."

With that she handed me a small pewter angel, a box of chocolates and a gift bag for Jade.

She didn't stay - her message was clear:

It gets better.

The kindness of strangers...


  1. I love reading all of your blogs. They make me bawl my eyes out and laugh out loud. You are such and amazing writer, I can see and feel everything clearly as if I were there with you every step of the way. Wish I HAD been there when it happend to help you guys through your incredibly hard time. I am thankful every single day that you, J, and the girls are alive and well. Love you guys!


    1. Thank you, love :) We love you too - BIG!!! :D

  2. Aw .... I love the ending to this one.

    1. :) I did too! It was one of those experiences that completely alters the way you look at the world. Right before the accident I was getting really discouraged looking at the news, and this experience reminded me that there are kindnesses that happen every single day that no one ever reports. <3