“That stroke of yours has it all!” Hemophiliac Swimmer stops PP at the lane line, leaning over with a toothy grin. She tries not to stare or think about the small round band-aid in the middle of his forehead. “….it’s got a Rhythm…..” He pauses, pondering….. “….and a nice strong kick to it too…..” HS shakes his head in unabashed admiration. “Beautiful!” he exclaims as PP reaches for her fins, thinking how at least something in her life is ‘beautiful’ cause it sure as hell hasn’t been too beautiful lately. What with the goddamn staph infection (Yes, hot tubs may cure constipations but they also may be the bubbly culprit of swimming germs that invade your skin and start to grow ….okay, PP will stop there. The details are just too ugly. Both figuratively and literally.)
So, after avoiding the pool and hot tub for two days on Dr. Do Do’s orders (Kaiser’s version of hell. Give the patient lots of antibiotics. Make the patient super sick. Tell the patient that more antibiotics are the only cure for infection even when the patient questions the wisdom of taking more and more since she’s been reading about how too many antibiotics can build up a resistance to infection and then nothing will cure the super staph infection and…., ‘Are you question my recommendation for cure? I am Doctor. I know what I talk about.’)
Well, PP has very little confidence in doctors or the gym at the moment. So, when HS, the charmer that he is, compliments her so sincerely today at the Y, she almost started crying in the pool. Yes the tears are fast and furious lately. A trait that PP hates. Why the hell are they so goddamn close to the surface?
At least if she had cried in the pool, she coulda just dunked her head underwater and voila, they woulda been washed away. On the other hand, when she’s wandering around Longs Drug Store, looking for a heating pad and can only find aisles and aisles of plants or automotive supplies and the tears start to well up, she has to fight the urge. No water to dunk under at Longs!
Back in the pool, she can’t help but contemplate…..Oh, but those little staphy buggies! What if they got into her eyes? Her ears? Her nose? Her….
Yes, they’re already there!
What’s a PP to do? Stay out of the pool, says Dr. Do Do (Actually his name is Dr. Do, which seems appropriate what with his 30 second appraisal of PP and then prescription for more antibiotics. He was all Action. But PP is gonna use his real name here so that any of her readers who may be the unfortunate recipients of Kaiser’s Urgent Care will be sure not to see Dr. DD!)
Swimming today, under the antibiotic nausea veil, PP felt strangely floaty. Like she wasn’t even really swimming. The water was warm, the lane was her own, Hemophiliac Swimmer in the lane next to hers.
And for those 45 minutes in the pool, she felt let’s face it, beautiful. Not in the way that HS may have thought, but in the way that only a perfect swim can make her feel. And while the antibiotics did make her tummy, initially, slightly queasy, by the end of the swim, the nausea had dissipated and all that was left was the blissful glow of the post swim endorphins, and the beautiful grin of Dear Hemophiliac Swimmer!