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Visiting the neurologist

The Southeaster howls as we park at the hospital. I have no idea where we have to go – there seems to be ten thousand cars in the carpark. I decided to give Bill some rescue remedy. I should have taken some as well – I have no idea why I did not! We ask the car guard where we need to go. His friendly smile and attempt at trying to figure out the name of the doctor is enough to convince me that he has no idea. We enter through the first door of the hsopital where there is a board with hundreds of names. We find the name of the neurologist, only to realise that we are about three days by horse away from her surgery. Bill smiles as I drop a prefectly articulated F-bomb. The lady coming towards us tries to frown, I think her botox prevents her. I can see she must think that I am most probably the patient.

When we eventually get to the surgery, we are politely told to fill in what feels like twenty forms. Why can they not take these details from our electronic records? Short of having to tell them my bra size, I get more and more irritated with the process. The friendly chatter of the receptionist about their children’s first day at school make me want to hit them over the head with the clipboard of forms. “Calm down, calm down, calm down” I keep telling myself.

The neurologist appears from nowhere calling us into her slaughterhouse. After very few pleasantries, we are taken on a rollercoaster ride through Bill’s brain. All I remember of the entire conversation is her final blow: “Frontal lobe dementia. I recommend that you start getting your affairs in order.” It is clear that our session is over. I cannot get my legs to get me up from the chair. She sits starting at us with what I assume is her best attempt at an empathetic expression. I want to grab her computer and smash her head in. I am so, so angry. I know this is not her fault, I know I should get up and walk into my new life with a frontal lobe demented husband. What the FUCK does that mean? What affairs must we get in order? Arrange his funeral? Sell our house and move into a frailcare? Bill sits as if he paralysed. The neurologist gets up from behind her desk and puts her hand our to usher us out of her office. Like two zombies we let ourselves be ushered.

We cannot find our car. I am beginning to think that I have lost my mind, not Bill. We walk round and round in circles trying not to be blown over in the crazy wind of the Cape of Storms. I desperately press the button on the alarm remote of the car to try and find it – to no avail. The same guard appears out of nowhere and points out our car. I had Bill’s car keys – we went to the appointment in my car. No wonder. His kindness makes my burst into tears again. I am a total mess. Bill and I do not say a word to each other as we drive home in the bumper to bumper afternoon traffic.

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