I’ve Gotta Get A Message To You
I sat shivering in the tissue paper the medical system favors. Keeps laundry costs down and all of that. I adjusted the opening of the sleeveless top, trying to keep my breasts covered as I gripped the drape around my rear. My toes appeared periwinkle, dangling over the table.
I stared out the second story window, in between the white vertical blind slats. Another building across the way, some activity in the parking lot, you know, people walking and driving around. A delivery truck. Must be an icky job picking up those specimen containers and taking them to the lab.
Knuckles rapped on the exam room door.
I never say come in.
Dr. Brenda Claytor came in. “Good morning, Miz Payne. How’re you?” She feigned caring while flipping through my chart.
“I’m having problems staying awake and I get headaches. It feels like a hippopotamus is sitting on my shoulders and my head is inserted in his rear end.”
“Your last M.R.I. was fine. It didn’t change from the baseline.”
She pressed the nurse call button and then took a little pen light out and started making me do eye exercises. Then she moved onto my ears and nose. What was she looking for? Hippo poop?
I ah-ed for her. Icy fingers palpated my lymph nodes.
The nurse arrived in a cheery zoo scrub shirt as the doctor finished listening to me breathe.
She said, “Open wide.”
She’d already done my mouth. But I opened it again. Maybe she has a brother-in-law who’s a dentist and she wanted to refer me to have my Mister T tooth pulled. I’ve got a baby tooth, a molar, with no tooth under it, known as tooth T. It’s one big silver filling. Every dentist I go to wants to crown in before it cracks. For $900 and up. But they do say the root is still good, so I’m keeping it until it does crack.
The nurse handed Doctor Claytor a wooden stick with cotton on the end. She bushed the insides of my cheeks with it.
What in the devil could that tell about my sleeping patterns? The PH value of my drool?
Nurse Zoo-ey wrapped a thick brown rubber band around my bicep and said, “You’ll feel just a little stick.”
I looked away and it was more than a little stick. Wait a minute. The only cheek swabbing bills I’ve remembered filing at Heavenly H.M.O. are for D.N.A. tests. Why would Dr. Claytor, a neurologist, want to check my D.N.A.?
Perry! I’ll bet he put her up to it. He’s trying to prove I’m not Daddy’s daughter, so he and Tammy can get a bigger cut. Wait. I didn’t get a cut anyway. Daddy left everything to his wife, Chloe. And now Momma is deceased, so maybe I’m in her will. Yeah, that’s it. Momma wouldn’t leave me out. Would she? I sighed.
The nurse said, “Hold this cotton ball while I get a Band Aid on it.”
I did. I pressed it down hard, so I wouldn’t get a big yellow-green bruise.