Monday, July 19, 2010

Blood: dragonflies

I'd spoken to the girl with the dragonfly tattoos before, but it had been a couple of weeks since she ran my screening --this is where they take a blood sample, measure your iron and your blood proteins, check your blood pressure and weight. It's pretty dull stuff for them, assembly line production, but they'll talk about most anything.

The girl with the dragonfly tattoos has a lot of tattoos. Dragonflies are lucky for her. They have a deep personal meaning. She says sees them everywhere.

"How long have you had your tattoos?" I asked as she took a small amount of blood from my finger.

"About a year," she said. "But I just got them touched up." She frowned. "I'm getting another one --a dagger over my heart."

"Um, why?"

And she told me. She and her longtime boyfriend had split up. They'd been together in high school, but split up at the end. She'd married another man, got pregnant, split up with the guy and the boyfriend re-entered the picture right after the child was born.

"That's what really hurts," she said. "He's been like my son's dad and now he's not..."

She started to tear up, which is a difficult to thing to see when you're in a blood pressure cuff.

"I'm very sorry," I told her. "I hate that this is happening to you. When did this all happen?"

She said flatly, "Two days ago."

"Jeez..." I shook my head. "I'm sorry, but are you sure you want to go get a tattoo right now? I mean, maybe you should get some shoes, go out dancing or something? Maybe you shouldn't do something so permanent."

"Why not?"

"Well, what if you meet somebody?" And I thought, What if you and the dude get back together?

"I always want to remember how much this hurts," she said.

She took my numbers then told me I could go on back to bleed.

"You have a good weekend, honey."

"I hope things get better for you," I told her. "I'm really sorry."

"Thanks," she said.

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