Third Stay in The Hospital
"I'll rely on Dr. Yamamoto."
I want to get my body repaired at the hospital. I can only live properly if I have good health . . . I wonder if I can be sure - somehow or other - of being able to do at least my own things when I reach 20? Doctor, please help me! I'm trying to encourage myself by saying that I don't have time to be wimpy. But I can't stop my disease from progressing, however much I try . . .
"You're not a student this time," said Dr. Yamamoto, "so you can take your time and stay at the hospital until you get better. Then you must do your best to stay alive. As long you're alive, I'm sure some good medicine will be developed. Up to now, neurology in Japan has lagged behind other countries, but recently it's been advancing at an incredible speed. Leukemia was a fatal disease up until a few years ago, but today some people are cured. Little Aya, I'm studying hard with the hope of being able to cure patients like you."
I couldn't stop crying. But today they were tears of happiness.
"Thank you, Dr. Yamamoto. You haven't given up on me. I was so worried you might give up on me because I haven't recovered, even though I've stayed in the hospital twice and used the new medicine."
I Nodded my head strongly in assent. I couldn't speak properly. My face was staked with tears.
Mom had her back to me. Her shoulders were shaking.
I feel so happy and so grateful for having been able to meet Dr. Yamamoto. Whenever I;m weak physically and mentally and feeling deeply discouraged, she comes to my rescue. Even when she has many patients waiting in the Outpatients' Department, she listens to me carefully without taking any lunch. She gives me hope. She gives me light. Her words-"As long as I'm a doctor, I won't turn my back on you"-were so reassuring!
Already three months have passed since my graduation. I received a letter from one of my classmates. She had found a job working at a company. She told me she was getting used to being there and was trying hard. As for me, after three months, I'm leading a hospital life again-in order to start over by repairing the damage to my body . . .
I started off my day by singing Bata ga saita (The Roses are Blossoming) in the toilet. I played the harmonica to increase my lung capacity. It had a very nice sound. It sounded as if it was blowing everything away-including all the bad things and death. I'll play it again without worrying about upsetting the neighbours.
On the way to Rehabilitation, I dropped by the toilet. As I was trying to sit down, I felt heavily on my buttocks into the toilet bowl and wet the back of my sweat pants. I didn't have time to change, so I went straight to rehabilitation. When I was doing my walking training, Y-sensei took hold of the rubber part at the back of my sweatpants. Discovering it was wet, he went away and left me as I was. Aya was left all alone at the parallel bars! Regarding it as 'independent training', I put a protector on my right foot to keep my ankle at 90 degrees, put some urethane between fingers, and started walking. I held firmly on to the parallel bars, Toddle, toddle . . .
Y-sensei watched me. "Put your legs forward a little more quickly," he told me.
I wanted to say, "It's awkward, you know, because my legs, the upper part of my body, and my hips won't moving forward together. If I get tense trying to do something about it, my legs get left behind and that's why I fall over." But I was rather diffident because I felt uncomfortable about my sweatpants. I said nothing and tried to do it many times by myself.