Abuela Anabela would have it no other way.
We Lose the Ones We Love
Dr. Denardo stopped by in the morning to discharge me. He told me that Mrs. Newell was filling all of my prescriptions.
“Don’t neglect the antibiotics,” he warned. “You’re still in some danger of infection. I’ll see you in my office exactly one week from today. Mrs. Newell has the time for the appointment.”
I listened but said nothing.
He noticed my silence, of course, and sighed. “I’m sorry for your troubles, Delia. I’m sure Adan Jr. will be all right despite everything.”
“I did not take any recreational drugs, Dr. Denardo. I would swear on my parents’ graves.”
“Yes, well, we’ve got to think beyond all that now, Delia. Let’s concentrate on your recuperation.”
It was clear that he still didn’t believe me or didn’t want to believe me. He turned and walked out to sign the discharge papers. My nurse came in to help me dress, and then, when the time came, she got me into the wheelchair and took me down. No one suggested that I go up to my baby to say good-bye. It was as if the entire hospital staff had heard the stories about me. I could feel it in the air, see it in their faces. Stevens was waiting at the hospital entrance to the parking lot. He had brought Señor Bovio’s limousine as close as he could to the entrance and then met me and my nurse. She helped me to the automobile and wished me luck, but she also looked as if she couldn’t wait to get away.
“Comfortable, Miss?” Stevens asked.
Comfortable? When would I ever be comfortable again?
“Yes,” I said. There was no point in complaining to Stevens.
I looked out at the hospital and up at the windows of the floor where I knew the NICU was, where Adan Jr. lay connected to all sorts of machinery. He knows I’m leaving, I thought. He feels it. I sat back and closed my eyes, dozing all the way to the estate. When we arrived, Mrs. Newell stepped out of the front entrance and waited. She made no effort to help me out of the car or up the steps. Stevens held my arm instead.
“You’re downstairs now,” she told me. “Toward the rear,” she added, nodding at Stevens. I could see he looked surprised.
I was in no mood to say anything or even care. I had never been in that section of the hacienda, but I knew it was where Teresa stayed. She came down the stairs when she saw me enter and immediately asked how I was.
“I’m okay,” I said.
“How frightening it must have been.”
“I’m sure you have something better to do than stand here and keep her from lying down, Teresa,” Mrs. Newell said. Teresa nodded and quickly walked off toward the laundry room. “I’ll take her from here, Stevens,” Mrs. Newell told him.
“Right,” he said, let go of my arm, and left.
She held me at the elbow and firmly guided me down the corridor and around to the rear of the house. When we reached an opened door, she paused.
“This is it,” she said. “All of your things are already hung up or in the dresser.”
I entered the small bedroom. I would share a bathroom with Teresa, who was two doors down in another bedroom. The window in my bedroom looked out at the rear of the estate. At least I could see clearly to the stables, where I thought I saw Amigo grazing in the corral. Then I looked around my new room.
It wasn’t a dirty or dingy room, nothing like the help’s quarters at mi tía Isabela’s estate. It was clean and simple, with two dressers, a double bed, a rocking chair with a standing lamp, a small chandelier at the center of the ceiling, and plain light-blue curtains on the two windows. There was a Spanish tile floor with a small oval dark-brown area rug by the bed. On the nightstand by the bed were a pitcher of water, my medications neatly lined up beside it, and a glass.
“Normally, you would be in the hospital at least another day or so,” Mrs. Newell said when I sat on the bed. “So, except for your going to the bathroom, I’d like you to remain in bed or not go any farther than that rocking chair. I expect you will listen to me this time when I tell you what to do and what not to do,” she added, smirking. “I’ll have Teresa bring you the magazines and books still up in Señora Bovio’s suite. Make sure you go to the bathroom, however, when you need to go. I don’t do bedpans.”
She went to my pills.
“You’ll take one of these now. I have your schedule and will see to it that you follow it correctly, so pay attention.” She handed me the pill and poured me a glass of water.
I took it and swallowed and drank. She put the glass down and started out, but then she stopped at the doorway.
“I’m sure you can get yourself undressed and into bed. Your nightgown is in the top dresser drawer.” She stared at me a moment. “Have you experienced any leaking from your nipples?”