I should get an Oscar for this.
Do you ever feel like just vanishing into thin air? Because that is just how I am feeling right now.
Sitting here in the car with a moron and staring at the building in front of me, all I can think is ‘She has to be fine. She can’t leave me just yet.’
I have never been a fan of hospitals, really. And ever since the accident, not.at.all. It has been my worst nightmare. Last time when I was in one, it didn’t go that well and I had promised myself to not come back, but still here I am.
It has been two and a half years now, but it wasn’t just yet the time to face a hospital again.
Oh, and isn’t it ironic that my own mother works here?
“Are you just gonna sit there, Hales?”
“I just need one more minute” I say and close my eyes.
“Seriously? One more minute? I have been waiting for you for that past ten minutes!” Nick exclaimed.
I just sigh.
“I understand why you don’t wanna go in there but Tracy needs you right now, Hales. C’mon, I am here with you” he says to me.
Those words calm me down a bit..
‘He is right. Tracy needs me right now. I have to be there for her’ I think to myself.
“Okay.. its now or never” I say and open the car door.
“Cool, I should have said that more earlier” he murmurs the last part.
“I heard that jackass” I say and hit him on his arm.
“Oww!” he shrieks.
“Huh! It wasn’t that hard” I start walking towards the building.
“Wait!” I hear Nick call from behind me.
“I should get an Oscar for this” I say.
“Don’t you think that’s a bit too much?” Nick says.
“No way! Facing your nightmare is the most bravest thing a person can do” I say.
“Oh really?” he asks.
“Yes for me at least!” I say and put my best don’t-mess-with-me look.
The last thing I need now is an argument with Nick.
“Ya, ya. whatever” he says and walks past me.
Thank god that he listened.
My day at school was normal. Classes, lunch, classes again and then finally home. I did not see Jackson today though. He was not even there in the cafeteria. I wonder where he was.
“Walk a little faster Hay” Nick yells and snaps me out of my thoughts.
Always with that stupid name! Urghh.
“Idiot, wait for me!”
“Hi Mrs. J” Nick winks at the thirty-five year old receptionist.
“Nick! How are you?” she exclaims.
“I’m good, I’m good. What about you?” he asks her.
“I’m fine too” she says.
The lady had really short golden-brown that came only till her shoulders and was a little plump. She was average looking, but still WHAT THE HELL? Nick isn’t even half her age!
“Ahem” I say to get their attention.
“Hello sweetheart, how can I help you?” she asks me.
“Mrs. J, you see this is my sister Haley.” Nick tells her.
“Oh! Hi, I am Kate” she says with a smile.
“Nice to meet you Kate. Could you tell me which room is Tracy Lobo in?” I ask.
“Hmm Tracy Lobo.. wait a sec”
“She is in room no.124, it is on the third floor” she says after a minute.
“Thank you” I say to her.
“No problem, but I have to ask this, are you a relative?” she asks me.
“No, a friend.” I say.
“It’s okay Mrs. J, she has been our neighbor for more than two years. We are the only family she has got. “Nick says this time.
“Oh okay, lifts are on your left” Kate says and gets back to work.
We walk our way to the lift in silence.
“Okay now this is it, Haley.” Nick says and holds my hand squeezing it a bit for assurance.
I just smile in return and start walking.
Breathe. Just breathe Haley. Everything’s gonna be alright.
Room 120. Room 121. Room 122. Room 1--
Halfway through the corridor we bump into someone.
“I’m so sor-”
“Haley! Nick! Thank god you both are here. Tracy has been asking for you both since she woke up” Sophie exclaims.
“Sophie! How is she?” Nick asks her.
“She is fine.... for now” she says.
“What do you mean for now?” I ask her getting a little worried.
“Uhh...... nothing it’s just that.. sh....she wasn’t waking up and I started to panic so that is why, and the doctors have not said anything yet. We are waiting for the report to come first.” Sophie says.
“Okay, is she asleep right now?” I ask.
“No, she is watching Tom and Jerry.” Sophie says, a little amused.
“Yep. That’s my Tracy!” Nick says and goes in the room.
“I have to go now. Please stay with her, I’ll be back in an hour or so” Sophie tells me.
“Yeah, okay. Bye, Sophie.”
“Yes! That is the way. C’mon Tom!” Nick is yelling as I enter the room.
“Run Jerry, run! Hide there--“Tracy is yelling too.
“Uhh guys, what’s happening?”
“Haley! How are you my darling? What were you doing so long? I have been asking for you since forever.” Tracy greets me.
“I’m fine. But don’t you think the question should be the other way round?” I say referring to her behaviour earlier.
“Oh dear, these are my last days. Let me enjoy.” she say
The words last days hit me like a brick. How can she be so casual about it? It’s her life we are talking about for God Sake!
I do one thing. I speak my thoughts.
“Oh my child come here” she pats on her right side. I go and sit next to her and she continues, “You see it is my time to go now. My husband and my son are missing me too much and I think heaven is incomplete without me.” she ends with a chuckle.
“I’m going in the cafeteria. Want anything?” Nick interrupts us.
“Nah. I’m fine. Be quick” I tell him.
“Kay, bye” and with that I am left alone with Tracy.
Before I can say anything, Tracy says the things that I was afraid to hear.
“Haley, listen. I know you are worried about me. God, even I am. But let us face the reality for once. I know that report is going to be positive. I know I am going to go away from here to a place unknown to man. I know after I’m gone you will be the one to cry the most and I know you are going to miss me. I will too. You are always going to be my daughter, Lee. I love you” Tracy finishes with a tear rolling down her cheeks.
I have orgotten how to speak. Heck this is happening again. I can’t bare anymore people going away from me.
I’m speechless. Everything she said is the truth. She is right. I have to face the reality, but I am not ready for it.... yet. All those times I have spent with her, she has been like a second mother. I am going to miss her a lot. More than anyone can even imagine.
“Don’t cry, Lee. You are going to make me cry too.”
It was then when I realized I was crying.
‘Lee’. I remember when I had told Tracy that I kind of like Brett Lee, so she came up with the name Lee for me as I am Haley. So when pronounced it sounds like Lee, though the spelling is different.
“Come here” she says snapping me out of my thoughts, extending her arm for a hug.
I instantly am in her warmth.
“I am going to miss you a lot, more than both your men are missing you from up there” I joke trying to lighten up the mood.
“Haha, yes maybe you will” she says.
There is a slight knock on the door and a nurse comes in.
“Visiting hours are over” she tells us.
“Can’t she wait a little longer?” Tracy asks.
“I’m sorry ma’am, she can’t. The lady outside is the only one who can stay with you” the nurse informs us.
“Lee, take good care of yourself. I love you. Bye”
“You too Tracy. Love you, bye” I say.
After giving her a small kiss on the forehead, I head for the door.
“I’m sorry you can’t wait a little longer. I hope you will come meet her tomorrow again.“Sophie says as I closed the door to the room.
“It’s fine. Of course I’ll come tomorrow. Bye Soph” I wave at her smiling.
“Bye Haley. See you tomorrow.” Sophie says and goes in.
“See it was not that bad, right?“Nick says.
“It was hard at first, but after talking to Tracy I felt a little better” I answer Nick.
It has been a little more than five minutes since we left the hospital and on our way home. We met mom before leaving and she told us that she might not be able to be home before evening tomorrow, so we are going to the hospital directly from school tomorrow and will come back with mom.
“She will be fine, don’t worry” he assures.
“Thanks Nick” I smile looking at the road ahead.
“Anytime” he says and turns up the radio.
‘One, Two, Three, Four. Uno do’ tres cuatro.
I know you want me, you know I want cha’
“Yeah! Pitbull rocks!”