I’d forgotten to pump-up the car tyres.
The car’s out the front.
We’ve got to be going soon.
The appointment note is crumpled in my hand.
It’s over an hours drive to the city.
My mother-in-law is waiting to see us off.
She’s pensive, knowing I’m on edge.
Feeling for her daughters predicament.
My wife, my patient, looks at me forlornly.
Her pleading olive eyes make me more panicky.
Now to transfer her from our bed.
Into her borrowed wheelchair.
I’ve no idea, it’s my first go.
Damn, the chair’s tyre’s are nearly flat too.
No time now, we must leave.
Another transfer into the car.
I almost stumble, she’s awkward to move.
She’s unsteady, her legs aren’t working.
I firmly grab her around the waist.
And she clasps her arms over my shoulders.
A gentle embrace of respect.
We wryly smile at each other.
She looks at me, with her pleading olive eyes.
I stay strong, but I’m anxiously shaking.
Finally I’ve positioned her into the car.
I somehow fold the borrowed wheelchair.
Frustrated, throwing the chair into the boot.
Off we drive, I’m trying not to over-speed.
Nervously over-gripping the steering wheel.
The whites of my knuckles plain to see.
Soon we’re approaching the city centre.
Agape, I’ve little idea of where to go.
She looks at me with her pleading olive eyes.
Bravely I say “Just a few more blocks”.
Blindly lucky, I eventually find our destination.
An imposing building, tall and dark grey.
Ungracefully I transfer her out of the car.
Wheeling her in, “damn” these flat tyres.
Eight storey’s up to the Doctors rooms.
He’s a renowned Neurologist, there’s none in our town.
We greet him, he’s a confident, but sombre man.
And my wife looks at him with her pleading olive eyes.
Knowingly, I think, he’s seen those sort of eyes before.
There were tests, lots of questions, and more examinations.
Our time there seemed to be standing still.
And silently we wait for blood results to return.
Eerily the Doctor begun to speak and explain.
A strange aura of hush fell upon us.
As we listened to his authoritative voice.
“It’s my diagnosis, that you’ve the Neurological disorder, Multiple Sclerosis”.
The long hour’s drive home was stunned quiet.
Except for the many rolling tears.
Trickling from my wife’s pleading olive eyes.
And on the road the cars tyres felt flatter.
The next day, I pumped the tyres up.
On her borrowed wheelchair, and on the car.
That signalled the beginning of our long journey.
Another thirty years of her gracious and everlasting smile.
Wheeling over the lumpy roads, until the last bend.
Looking at me no more, with her pleading olive eyes.
Ivor Steven (c) 2018.