Sunday, January 15, 2006

Katherine

'Katherine' was a vibrant, talkative, quick-moving lady who came to see me as a patient from time to time. She had lost her husband quite suddenly just three years before I met her, but she carried herself with poise and a smile. She was always dressed impeccably, and without fail wore stylish high-heeled shoes in every possible shade of colour. Her hair was 'just so', her makeup discreet and tasteful.

Her manner of addressing me was more of an interrogation than a greeting..." So? How are you then? I LIKE that shirt; is it new? It's nice, matches your eyes. So when are you going to have some babies, hmm?". I wasn't really required to reply, more just to smile and nod.
Likewise, when asked her reason for attending, Katherine would respond with a list of demands, as opposed to requests. " Well, I want some cream for my rash, and I think there's something going on with my knee. Oh, and I think my hair might be getting thinner - what do you think? Is it? By the way, you need to do a breast check - I thought I felt a lump last week. And don't forget I need that cream". It was all I could do not to click my heels together and bawl, "Yes, maam!"

Despite her unusual ways, I found Katherine intriguing and appealing. For one thing, she was obviously clever, and loved nothing more than to partake in snappy repartee. Her eyes would sparkle as she tried to tease with a poker face; she would burst out laughing with a hooting, body-shaking mirth.

The best entertainment was when Katherine would tell me about her social life. She was always out and about, and delighted in telling me the latest gossip about all her friends. For awhile, one friend, Barbara, seemed to be particularly important to Katherine. Then one day, Katherine came in seething. Barbara had asked out Katherine's current love interest! And even worse, the wretched man had accepted the invitation! Katherine was seething, she was fuming, she was flaring her nostrils in disgust. Now she turned snarky... " That Barbara... she wears SO much rouge, it's AWFUL. And her TIGHT TOPS...she' s too old for TIGHT TOPS. They're low-cut, too, just trashy." Katherine tossed her head. " If that's what he likes, he's welcome to her."

Katherine had no qualms in telling me about her s*e*x life, either. One boyfriend she ditched because he hardly ever wanted 'it'; another she mocked, because he required, shall we say, some 'chemical enhancement' in order to perform. " My husband NEVER needed anything like THAT!", she scoffed. It was difficult to keep a straight face around Katherine sometimes. Much of the time she was funny without meaning to be. I did a great deal of 'ahh'-ing and 'mm'-ing. The lady was a riot.

But I haven't told you the funniest thing about the vivacious and dynamic Katherine. Katherine was a giggly and gorgeous 78 years of age. Fancy that, eh?

12 comments:

Motherkitty said...

That's just what I said! I don't consider anyone old until they get into their seventies. Good for Katherine. She'll probably live to be a hundred.

Wonderful post, Jellyhead. Hope you have a wonderful Sunday.

Lucy said...

I just found your page today
My mother is almost 79 years old.
Abut 10 years ago she was so healthy like Katherine.
But recentry my mother is sick in hosptal. My mother can't think anything. I feel so sad. Katherine is too healty.
I was surprised!!

Abandoned in Pasadena said...

As I read your story I thought it was leading up to Katherine's death and what a lovely surprise to find out she is a vivacious 78 year old.

My husband's, aunt Ollie, will be celebrating her 103rd on Feb. 17th. She is still very actively walking around...even goes to the barn to feed her grandson's horses. How about that!

Some people just don't age as fast as others and apparently take good care of themselves.
As I've always told my kids, "Take GOOD care of your body, cause it's the only home you have."

Heather said...

I love patients like Katherine!

Alice said...

May she enjoy life for another 78 years!

shellyC said...

Hope I am kicking around like that at 78.

Flossy said...

That's a great story. My grandmother is 86, and is still very active - her social life is far busier than mine is! She is in a choir and goes out to entertain the "old people" as she calls them. I love it! She loves a glass of wine too. She has outlived 2 husbands and her third is a toy boy at just 82 *lol*
She is healthier and more active than some half her age...

Suzanne said...

when I grow up to be 70, I want to be just like Katherine! She's alright!!!

TUFFENUF said...

Enjoyed your Katherine story. My mom, "Catherine" is 86. She is in great health, having had cardiac bypass surgery when she was 80. I can't get her to wear her hearing aids, so she never knows what the doctor said! I suggested to her to carry a tape recorder with her to the office visit next time.

manababies said...

She's got a lot of spunk, that's for sure! And now I feel rather foolish for saying that I feel old when I'm "only" 34! :)

John Cowart said...

May we all be so alive if we live that long.

susan said...

A sign of a good caring physician, you listen to your patients and remember them. Katherine is lucky to have you to take care of her, and it sounds like you are lucky to have her for a patient! As for the comment on my blog, looking forward to a BBQ on the deck with you!