LIFE WITH FLO: The Series: Part 25

By Karen Waters


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January 5, 2005 - Part 25


In the still of the night, as I lay awake staring into the dark, I whisper to Flo, "Do you mind if we talk?". I knew she wouldn't actually be asleep, since she works the 24/7 shift and all. She whispered back that she was all ears, but this, of course, was only wishful thinking on Flo's part. She would be most happy if she could be the proud owner of even a single pair. But tonight I needed her, so I let her pretend. I began the conversation with, "Flo, do you realize that we have now been together a bit over nine months?" She was shocked. Her blood ran cold. I gave her more ice to keep her comfortable. "You know, Flo, it actually feels like we've known each other for much longer". She agreed. "In reality I've had PH long before I met you. Nearly thirteen years now since diagnosis. But what I'm really feeling tonight is something a little more poetic I suppose. What I want to say is that I'm so very tired of being tired, and sometimes I become so very sick of being sick". "So", replies Flo, "what you are saying is that you are simply sick and tired of being sick and tired. That's a common feeling amongst you PH patients", Flo snorted. "Oh, so NOW you are saying I'm COMMON?" When her answer was in the affirmative, I promptly covered her with a pillow and returned to staring into the dark in the still of the night, which now seemed ever so much more comforting than Flo's honesty.

The truth be known, Flo has been in a bad mood ever since winter set in. She was quite anticipating the joy of the cold weather, but never saw that the winter fashion colors would cause her a great deal of anonymity. Yep. Flo is truly miffed to find that her black wardrobe meshes so well with MY black wardrobe that nobody notices her much any more. Now all she talks about is how spring is coming. She has no clue that I'm starting to think in terms of black becoming a color for all seasons. After all, if SHE can do it, then why can't I? You're absolutely right. I CAN.

I wanted you to know that one thing I learned on our cross country move is that Flo travels quite well. However, her senior partner does NOT. After much analysis, perhaps a minute or two, I have figured out why. Flo simply goes along for the ride. It's the senior partner who must do all the heavy lifting! And let me tell you, Flo does NOT travel light. My van carried more sterile "One Time Use" products than an ambulance. So, if you are going to travel, my advice is to take along something useful for Flo, like a Nanny, or even better, an R.N.

Our trickiest challenge of the trip was finding DRY ICE. You can find it okay in most major cities. But don't think you're going to just stop by and pick it up in PoDunk, Iowa. They just look at you and say "First of all, what IS dry ice?" "And, second of all, WHY in the world would anyone want DRY ice?" We just looked back at them and told them it was because the other kind was just TOO WET. We didn't bother to explain what it was because we felt that IF THEY WANTED AN EDUCATION THEY SHOULD GO BACK TO SCHOOL.

Flo and I want you to know that we are most happy here in Maine. We have a lovely house, on a lovely corner of a lovely street. You only pass two cemeteries on the way down our street to our house, but you hardly notice because they are so quiet there. The other quiet neighbors here are the deer who come around to eat the apples that fall from our tree out back. A Blue Jay lives in the pine tree outside my window over this very desk from which I am typing. Which reminds me, along with that window, I have my own lovely little office, with a stone floor, and terracota walls, the pine framed window, and french doors that go out onto a deck. But Flo is not jealous, because she has a desk of her very own! Yes, indeedy! It's very roomy, and right in the kitchen. We call it Flo Central, and it is for HER exclusive use only. And today we know we are one step closer to being "moved in" because the lovely little office is finally CLEANEDUP AND ORGANIZED. You see, CHAOS is not much tolerated around here because Flosuffers severely from OCD. My goodness, EVERYTHING has to run like clockwork with her. But I guess that'sa good thing. Otherwise how would she so effectively manage all those Nanograms24/7 ?



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