"Vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord. And he can surely have mine. I want seashore
and dreamy warm days, staring into the horizon and taking the salts of the ocean."-Lois
"You know, I'm not going to see you or Jeff again."
These were the last lucid words that I would hear from a friend, lover, and soul mate of nearly fifteen years. Lois endured
kidney complications and failure for almost twelve of those years. Seven of those joyous and sometimes save turbulent years
were prolonged by in center hemodialysis, peritoneal and home hemodialysis.
Having heard similar utterances before ("You know I'm not going to live much longer. . . . I don't have much time left
. . .") this premonition flew right over my head like . . .
I gave her a peck on the cheek and said, "I'll see ya' in the morning. Love ya’."
I drove home from Sturdy Memorial Hospital through a maze of streets on the east side of Attleboro Massachusetts. Approaching
a main road that runs north and south in this small city of 44,000 people . . .
The parking lot was nearly full at this time of morning so it took a good five minutes to secure a space. I did this and then
meandered toward the front sliding doors, through the lobby, down the gray wall-to-wall carpeted hallway, and past the gift
shop to one of the two stainless steel elevators. I remember looking at the watch that Lois had given me on my last birthday,
so that I would not strain my neck by looking at the clock when taking her pulse. It read 9:20 A.M. Stepping in I pushed the
number three button. There was a game I played in my head in front of these dark wood paneled, double door elevators in which
I'd try to guess which one would open first and I was always wrong. Reaching the third floor, having guessed wrong again,
the door opened and with a quick right turn I started walking toward the patient rooms and nurses' station. About twenty feet
ahead of me several hospital personnel were moving in, out, and around a doorway. An elderly security guard with thick, black-rimmed
glasses stood across the hallway against the navajo white walls. Heading to the room in which I had left Lois the previous
night, I didn't think much of all the fuss. I came upon the guard, said "good mornin'" and looked to my left at all the commotion.
"Oh shit!" I yelled, "That's Lois!". . .
"I hope this book... opens some
eyes to the real world of dialysis and all that is involved as a patient
and as a caregiver."
-Robert J. Andrews
“It was hard to understand how she felt.
(about being sick) She had her own way. She was an individual who liked to get things done; she was a great lady.”