The Secret Life of Kathy Sluga

WORK
Kathy asked her nurse Tracy to bring in the next patient
into observation room 7.

Tracy brought in nine-year old Stephanie
who came bouncing in with two blond pigtails
and a pink dress with white polka dots.
As Kathy hoisted Stephanie up onto the bed
her stiff white coat wrinkled on the sleeves.

Stephanie smiled as Kathy brought out
the stethoscope to check her heart beats,

the tongue dispenser to check her throat,

and the cuff to check her blood pressure.
Kathy told Stephanie’s mom,
who was twiddling her thumbs, that Stephanie was fine.

A sigh of relief washed over her face as she hugged Stephanie.
Kathy presented her a toy pony that was as
pink as the outfits Sharpe wore in High School Musical.
Stephanie giggled and skipped out of the room to the waiting area.
Her mom thanked Kathy and strolled out after her daughter.

Kathy finished entering Stephanie’s medical information in the computer

and took off her coat.

She went to her office filled with plants and a plush brown couch.

The view of the clear blue sparkling lake, and the sunset made her feel calm.
Kathy picked up her black leather bag,
took off her heels,
watered her plants,
and locked up the office.
The Pediatric unit was quiet as an auditorium of students waiting to find out about a snow.

She walked out of the building into the summer night.

EN ROUTE
Kathy strolled down the sidewalk with a smile on her face.
Her black leather bag swung as she made her way to the garage.

She approached her 2000 Lexus RX 330

that had been with her since she was seventeen.
When she was 20 feet away, she unlocked the door with keys
and the car light lit up the dim garage.

She entered the car,
she placed her coat and bag on the leather passenger seats, and

she started the car and made her way out of the garage.
It was a warm night, so she opened her sunroof.
Her favorite song “Barefoot Bluejean Night” played on 99.5.
As she drove down River Road, she saw kids walking their dogs.

The sun was setting as it expelled red and orange in every shade possible.

At the red light, she scrunched her hair into a messy bun.
15 minutes later Kathy entered her neighborhood
with trees on each side of the road forming an arch.

She drove onto her driveway, parked the car, and grabbed her bag and coat.

Then she walked to the mailbox,
grabbed the mail,
and carried it inside.

HOME
Kathy set her coat and bag at the bottom of her mahogany stairs
and carried the mail into the kitchen.

She set the mail,
which was mostly coupons to Jewel and Ulta,

into the woven basket.
Kathy opened the fridge and took out some leftover spaghetti and meatballs.

She popped this into the microwave for a minute

And poured herself a glass of wine.
She carried her meal to the couch and turned on the TV.

The “Miracle of Life” was on the medical channel,

a miracle she could never have in her life.
Tears flowed down her cheeks
she could taste the salt of the water on her lips

as she watched the baby held by the mother and the father holding them both.
Kathy knew that after John left her for not being able to have children,

no man would enter her life again.





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