She was my last patient for the day. As I looked out to the visitor’s room and saw her laughing as she played rock-paper-scissors with my receptionist, I couldn’t help but smile. Angela was a fighter. She had been diagnosed with an illness at a critical stage, and she had never given up. She turned and saw me looking through the curtains. She leaped from her chair, and in a few steps had reached my door.
“Hi Dr. Lewis, you should have called me”, she said. I took her in my arms and sat her down on my table, as her mother came behind her. Unlike Angela, her face was anxious. She didn’t know the results yet.
“How is she?” she asked me, her voice wavering with anticipation of what I would say.
I looked at her, then at Angela and said, “Let’s put it this way Mrs. Lewis. I’ll be at all her graduations in the future.”
As I told the words, her face became calm, and a smile appeared. She hugged me. I closed the clinic for the day, and we walked out. “Daddy, I’m really happy you’ll be at my graduations in the future”, said Angela, as I locked the doors.
“Then you stop calling me Dr. Lewis when you come here. Is it a deal?” I replied, smiling too. .
It was a day the heavens opened up. Angela opened her favorite clear umbrella, and stood waiting for me to carry her. The treacherous wind blew strong, taking the umbrella out of her hand.
“Wait, come back”, she shouted and without thought ran onto the street. “Angela….”
My wife’s scream echoed into the rain, as we watched her get hit. We ran to her, I carried her and hailed the nearest cab. As she held on to my neck, blood from her wounds on my sleeves, I heard her whisper, “It’s a deal, Daddy.”
A moment later, I could still see the umbrella, lying still on the water; still like the smile on her face; still like my Angela’s heart.