There are days when I think I deserve what I got. So does every and each one of my mates at the dialysis facility. One of them said the other day that he was sure dialysis was a divine way to humble the arrogant. To prepare him for the next life, in a place where eveybody is more humble than here. The guy I am talking about has a weird name and he looks a little like an Irish friend of mine from the old days, the same squinting blue eyes, the same smily expression, and an inner toughness which is read easily in his voice and manners. Like a child that has been toughened by growing up in a rough house. He lives in a cottage in the mountains, by himself, where the ambulance drives him to from his dialysis sessions.
This guy never complains about anything. I have never heard him say that he was tired after his four hour long blood cleansing. I have never seen him walk with any sign of fatigue or dizziness. When in spite of the clamps, he starts bleeding at the end of the session, he winks at the nurse and says his blood is cherry red and so it must be really healthy blood.
We sit in the lobby on these cold metal chairs like a bunch of ghosts, most old and yellow skinned from the built up toxins in the body. Others, a bit younger, like myself, are under the delusion that we look healthy because we do a fair amount of moving around, even swimming, everyday. The truth is that we all want to deny that if we weren´t on a life support system(the fucking machine, bless it) we would all be quite dead.
Yet dead is a very common state of being for people. Most people who have ever lived on this planet happen to be dead already. Most others haven´t been born yet. It follows that those who are living right now are the fewer.
We all will spend most of TIME dead. So cheer up and do not be afraid. Prepare to join all those millions, some of whom you probably know and are longing to see again.
How futile it is to worry about losing life when it is a law that we shall lose in any case.
There are so many faces on the other side that I would love to kiss again, even if it is with my spirit alone. I have seen them in reveries and in dreams. They wait.
The guy with the squinting blue eyes talks to another patient whom I also like a lot. A fifty five year old woman from an impoverished African country. She used to be a teacher. She migrated to Spain and worked here for a while, until she was diagnosed suddenly with end stage kidney failure. She was placed on dialysis and, much like myself, could not return to where she came from because there is no convenium between Spain and her country to facilitate dialysis if she decides to return. IN Spain, you can ask to be moved anywhere in Europe, so you can actually live anywhere you wish within the EU and get dialysis free of charge. But this does not apply to Canada, Africa, or some other countries. So we are stuck here. On the other hand, the treatment here is superb and we all feel very comfortable with it, within the context of the disease.
The blue eyed guy, who is about seventy five, must be tired of living alone, because he is courting the African woman in his own bizarre way. He doesn´t talk much, and when he does his mountain jargon is hardly comprehensible. He simply pulls out a bunch of mint candies from his pocket and gives them to the woman, who takes them and laughs.
She finally told him that if she wanted her to go live with him he might consider giving her something more than candies, but she knew what a tight ass he was, and couldn´t expect much from him. So she would never move in with him, though she was a very good cook.
He still woos her. They have both been coming to dialysis for three years and a half.
I hope the unfullfilled romance goes on for many years.
I might talk about it later.
I am typing with the punctures from the needles still fresh on my arm, and I fear I will start bleeding, so I will stop right here.