Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Random Law School Update 37

Last Locations-
Lisbon, Portugal: September 28 - October 2, 2012
Sitges & Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain: October 13, 2012
Venice, Italy: October 20 - October 22, 2012

Present Location: Barcelona, Spain
Arrival Date: August 26, 2012
Departure Date: December 22, 2012*

Next Location: Undetermined

I am sitting alone in a hospital in a foreign hospital as a doctor tries to explain to me, in Spanish, that my counts have dropped to 43. I blink, obviously phased by this news. He looks concerned as well. But don’t worry, he continues. Abnormal but not so dangerous. Don’t worry. Don’t worry. You should see the hematologist immediately. You should come back for more blood work tomorrow. Don’t worry, it is abnormal but not dangerous. Don’t worry. He says. As if I hadn’t gone through this before.

He leaves and I sit alone as the walls shift around me — unable to maintain the straight and steady illusion to which I am accustomed. I am not worried. There is nothing to worry about. I would be worried if they had dropped from 240 to 170. Then I could worry about a downward trend. I would worry if they were at 5, then there would be an immediate risk of death which would almost certainly mean spending a significant portion of the next week in the hospital. And tons of needles.

But 43 offers nothing to worry about. They are already low enough to signal that my splenectomy failed, and they are high enough that I won’t have to do anything about it for awhile.

What I feel isn’t worry. It is simple sadness. I feel completely sad. I can’t tell whether it is a sadness for the loss of something good that could have been or a sadness for the infliction of something new that is bad.

My first thought sitting all alone in the hospital chair was that I wanted to go home. It isn’t true. Going home won’t fix anything. But there is something comforting about telling yourself that you want to go home. As if just saying “there is no place like home,” might invoke the power of the ruby slippers and allow you to escape the Wicked Witch once and for all.

I do suspect this is all a dream, filled with lessons. At some point I fully expect to wake up in my bedroom with boring normal platelets.