After the urologist finished the exam and after he pointed out the relevant features on the ultrasound image and after they printed out a copy of the picture for me, he and I walked back to his office.
It was sumptuous in comparison to the cramped office where we had just looked at the images. There, we were shoulder to shoulder, huddled over the monitor. Here, I sat in comfort looking up at a Persian miniature on his bookshelf, gazing down at a oriental carpet on the floor.
I leaned over to flip the edge of the carpet over. It was wool. The pattern on the back was almost as fine as the one on the front.
Nice carpet, I said to the doctor, who was busy behind his desk
fiddling with something.
Oh, he responded,
He said nothing more, and that was the end of that.
Perhaps now that all the examining and explaining and diagnosing was done, perhaps this was the time he set aside for the reality to sink in, to help with the coping. Maybe this was his technique for giving me some space, giving me some time.
But he was not looking at me. He wasn't even talking to me. Ok, that isn't quite right. He was talking -- talking about his Yahoo email account and fiddling with his tiny laptop computer.
He stood up and came over to me. He showed me how it worked. It had a pen instead of a mouse. But he confessed that since the screen was so small and the typeface of most web pages was so correspondingly tiny, he usually couldn't read it.
It seemed a bit surreal to me. Here I've been told I probably have cancer, and the doctor is dinking with his laptop computer nervously and making conversation evidently just to fill the quiet space in the room.
Imagine if it had been my first time!
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