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The appointment with Doc Wilson went as expected; after a thorough examination, he put down his stethoscope and spoke the words she was both longing and dreading to hear.
“Mrs. Cunningham, you are ready to mosey on out of here. Looks like you’ve done everything you were supposed to and have healed well. I can’t justify to your insurance company that you need to be here any longer. There will be some final tests and check out procedures tomorrow, and then we’re cutting you loose!”
The concern on Addie’s face caused him to pause. “Most patients sigh with relief when I give them that news. I’m not sensing that reaction here.” He picked up her chart and reviewed his notes. ”Is it because you haven’t made arrangements other than to go back to your daughter?”
Eyes brimmed with tears, Addie nodded. “I’ve been unable to reach my sister; she’s on the other side of the country, vacationing.”
“And you haven’t any other option?” Doc Wilson asked, kindly.
“Well, one of the other patients here has invited me to share a house,” she responded.
“That could be a good thing; if you have both been here for rehab, then you should be good for each other. You probably have similar dietary and exercise instructions. Who’s the patient?”
“Well, now, that’s interesting,” said the doctor. Addie thought she saw a bit of a twinkle in his eyes as he added, “And are you going to take him up on the offer?”
“I don’t know. It’s totally out of my comfort zone—not anything I would even have considered in the past. It’s certainly not proper!”
“But you’re considering it now?”
“Would it be a terrible thing for me to do?”
Doctor Wilson smiled and looked at Adelaide thoughtfully.
“You’re an adult, and I think you should do what you feel like doing. You could do a lot worse than share a house with another recovering heart patient; like I said, you might be good for each other. It’s easier to maintain a healthy diet and exercise when you’re not alone.”
After Doc Wilson left, Addie decided to call her daughter. They hadn’t spoken since the day Felicia dropped off the bag with her personal items and the nurse had ordered her to leave. The front desk at the hospital had told her that Felicia had called a couple of times, but the doctor had left word that her calls were not to be put through. Addie had called when she was transferred to the rehab facility, but Felicia hadn’t been at home, so she had left a message informing Felicia of the transfer. Now she dialed her home number again.
“Felicia, this is your mother. I just wanted you to know that I’m being discharged from Langdon Rehabilitation tomorrow.”
“Oh, great. I suppose, that means I have to come by and pick you up, and Betsy and I will have to go back to sharing a bed. Damn! I was just getting used to getting a decent night’s sleep! And I guess it’s back to dark bread on no Cheetos! I won’t be able to pick you up until after my soaps, but I’ll be there at 4:00. Be ready, will you? I want to be back in time for Dr. Phil.” And with that, Felicia hung up.
Addie sat there listening to the dial tone for a few minutes before placing the phone handset back in its cradle.
Sleep was a long time coming that night. Adelaide had so much to think about. Should she accept Michael’s invitation? What would her sister say? What would Felicia say? Thoughts of Doc Wilson’s recommendation that she find an alternative living situation for a while, where she could be stress free were on her mind, along with Michael's unconventional invitation.
It felt like she’d just closed her eyes when she awoke to the sound of a knock at her door. A glance at the clock on her nightstand told her it was 8:00 a.m.
(to be continued..)
(to be continued..)