This is it, I guess.
Only, it isn't as I expected it to feel like. There are beeping boxes with blurred out lights next to me while I'm connected to tube after tube after tube.
Mom's holding my hand and Dad's standing up, looking down at me while biting his finger. Both of them are crying. I'm not at all surprised. But there's something to the way they're crying that makes it okay. They're not begging me to stay strong or to stay with them, like parents in cancer movies usually do. They have peace in them and I know they're happy for me. Not happy that I'm going to die, obviously. They're devastated, I'm guessing. But they've known for years. Maybe it's because they know I'm Okay or I'm going to be.
I have to wonder though, as people in white started poking and prodding me, screaming instructions to (most probably) poor interns who didn't know what they were doing, if this was what it was like for him. My room was a state of panic and I would have been scared if 1.) I had never been in a situation like this before 2.) this didn't happen every other month or so since I was fourteen 3.) I didn't know that I was going to die.
And I was. And I am. And it's okay.
I've been in the same room for a week. Things got quite bad a few mornings ago when I started screaming about my lungs which still sucked at being lungs. It was almost as painful as the day I got the phone call from Mrs. Waters. Almost.
The day before I was admitted into the hospital was the day I went back to Support Group. We were smaller than we had been in months and that was okay, I guess. It was for an entirely different reason that I needed support group – I needed an entirely different kind of support.
It didn't help.
Isaac was there, of course. He kept looking at where I was sitting and I even tried to wave to him but then I remembered that he wasn't looking. He couldn't. But maybe he was thinking the same thing I was. Because he was looking at one of the places that he last saw him when he was still able to see. I was where he had sat on that first day.
Patrick wasn't any better. He just went on about the usual, about living your best life today. But he still didn't get it – there was no living your best life. You only get one and the one you have will be the worst and the best. It's not like you're going to have a point of reference. The fact that Gus had no more days to live still made me want to cry. And did.
In fact, I lost it when Patrick added him to the final list of names at the ending prayer. It felt so final – like that was it. That was the mark he left to the rest of them – a name on a list. When all of us are gone and it was only Patrick left, no one would even know who Abby or Tom or Shelley were. No one would know who Augustus was. No one would know who I was.
Lying here, in these final moments, if my doctor asked me to rate my pain from 1-10, I would say 0. Despite not being able to breathe or having machines doing things I didn't understand – I was fine. No, I was more than fine. I was okay. Finally okay again.
The lapses in between my short breaths were getting longer. The beeps from that one machine started going slower and slower. My mom's grip on my hand got tighter and so did mine. I wasn't scared but I wanted her to feel it. Feel all my strength not fade away but rekindle in her. It was the end of my today but not for them. They would go on and in that grip, I gave what strength it was I had so they wouldn't do it alone. Metaphorically, anyway. It's not like I could actually pass on strength into my mom like in video games.
I guess Augustus rubbed off on me more than I thought.
My grip slackened and I could breathe again. The room went away and my lungs felt like lungs again. It didn't have the same heaviness or fire that it used to. There was no light to follow. Only darkness and stars, leading me home.
When I got there, there he was. The same crooked grin and wouldn't you know it – an unlit cigarette in between his lips.
"Took you long enough," he said, reaching for my scarless hand. "Okay?"
A/N: I was watching My Sister's Keeper for some reason and then this popped into my head. I wrote this in near hysterics because that movie and The Fault in Our Stars just… yeah. FEELINGS. This was not proofread. It's just a random drabble. Heh.