She took a while to cool down because of the heat of the fitness room--ate her raisin bran and banana and then headed up for a shower.
The snow was flurrying outside, covering her car. She made a mental note to give herself an extra 10 minutes to slowly walk out to the car and clean it off.
At her hair appointment the salon was deserted and she settled into a relaxing shampoo and blow dry. Her scalp had been so itchy lately and she asked her hair dresser to let her know if she saw anything suspicious. She was very cool about it, telling her that at the salon she used to work at, they gave LICE a code name---- Pumbas---so that the clientele wouldn't panic unnecessarily if lice were discovered.
Fortunately, no lice were found. She decided from now on, instead of paying the lice lady twenty-five bucks for a lice check, she would just pay thirty bucks for a blow dry and ask if they saw anything--two birds...one stone.
She arrived and before she could take a few steps through the door, she was immediately greeted by old friends. It was so nice to see people who had helped to raise her and loved her all these years. As she embraced and smiled and caught up with these beloved people in her life, her peripheral vision caught a scene to her left.
What she saw was this: A woman look at her face and then slowly scroll down to her shoes and back up. She then watched her indicate to another woman to look her way. Together they exchanged looks-eyebrows up-a few words and then included a third in their conversation. It was so surreal to witness being talked about. She knows people talk about her, but to have it happen right before her very eyes was unsettling. Proof. It's real. She didn't have to hear about it, wonder about it, she just had to stand there and see it happen.
Just a few steps through the door and there it was.
Confirmation--she had not brought her most beloved with her, she wanted to protect them from the judgement and gossip. No, she was in this alone. She knew she could do it. It wasn't going to be comfortable, easy or without significant heart trauma. But she had had a lifetime to prepare and she knew she could do hard things. And she did. Of course she did.