George Kamajian as told by Bob Fedor ~
I'm an old family doctor. Seen much and forgot more. Life has taught me that we touch our patient's lives for a moment, a season or a reason--and sometimes with unforeseen consequences.
I grew up in Erie, Pennsylvania. In 1968, when I was nineteen, the Tet Offensive in Vietnam caught the American military off-guard, and the Pentagon began frantically drafting new troops.
My lottery number was low. I knew my civilian days were numbered, but I didn't want to go to Vietnam to be a trained killer. It wasn't in my nature, then or now.
Andrea Eisenberg ~
Seeing patients in my ob/gyn office this morning, I try to stave off the mild nervousness rumbling inside of me. My good friend Monica is having a C-section this afternoon, and I'm performing it.
We met ten years ago, when I walked my three-year-old daughter into Monica's preschool classroom for the first time. Monica sat on the floor, a child in her lap and others playing around her. Like them, I felt drawn by her calm, soothing manner and infectious laugh.
Over time, our friendship grew: At school or social gatherings, we always ended up giggling together. We took family trips together, trained together for marathons and supported each other through heartaches--my divorce, the closing of her childcare business--and our respective struggles to find new paths.
Richard Weiss ~
At two am its insistent ring ambushes me awake.
I whisper, not wanting to disturb my wife or rouse
the dog who will whine for food, write down
the name and number before it's jumbled, swallow
my resentment on being awakened and listen
to his story--then ask those practiced questions,
scrolling his body from one organ to another.
Tell me about the pain--what it feels like--pressure
or a vise, does it stab, sear, rip, ache, is it steady