But now, she's looking at the stubs where fingernails used to be, and she's wondering if she has more tells than she thought.
they come suddenly crashing over you,
they come easily...
Her head is a jumble of medical textbook terms; she's a diligent armchair physician. That could pass as responsibility, but the real reason is far more pedestrian: When you've got 24 hours a day with little to do, Google becomes a better friend than that one guy in college you still wish you'd kissed.
Now, her mortality comes threaded through the letters of a word she can't quite pronounce easily just yet. It sounds more like a -phobia than an -itis, but, with a laugh that's a little more bitter than her mouth is accustomed to, she realizes that it's perfectly both; who isn't afraid of just kind of...wasting away?
Of course, it could be cancer (lymphoma is its favorite form), or pneumonia, or a heart attack -- her disease is nothing if not varietal. A handful of ways to kill her, 15 to 20 years to do it. It's a little like a prison term (and that's an analogy she's used a lot lately).
Maybe she'll get time off for good behavior.
Then again, it could just as easily take 50 years. She knows that. Even if her doctor hadn't lowered her eyes, nonplused, she wouldn't have believed her. She doesn't trust doctors. Not that she doesn't have confidence in her team, no... Just... She knows God has a way of making things happen; He never lets something as silly as a prognosis stand in His way.
And she thinks that there will come a time, maybe in a couple hours or days or weeks, when this will make sense to her the way it should, that she'll have to confront it and process it the way a normal person would. For right now, though, there's a disconnected calm. A poker face. She'd like to say it has something to do with being at peace with her fate, but it's probably more that she never had a chance to live her life the way she wanted, so it doesn't really feel like too big a thing to lose. She knows that will change. That has to change.
She can wait for fear patiently. Curiously. That, at least, is something new.
Also, she could get hit by a car tomorrow, so there's that.