CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED and SIXTY-TWO
“What I see is here and what I know,” Delphie waved her hand in a circle around her forehead, “is that each of these treatments have merit.”
“But. . .!” Sissy’s voice rose with frustration.
“The question is one of order,” Delphie said, nodding to herself. “Which one are you doing now?”
“Ivan stopped chemotherapy last week,” Sissy said her voice laced with sorrow and anger.
“Ah,” Delphie said. Looking up at them, she smiled. “That makes sense. May I speak plainly?”
“Please,” Ivan said.
“You are exhausted,” Delphie said, gesturing to the cards. “Your exhaustion is from your illness and from your mental torture. You cannot heal until you are less exhausted.”
Ivan grunted in irritation.
“So here’s the best order,” Delphie said. “First, you work with Blane. Every herb, every treatment. You do everything he asks you to do. This will help raise your energy. It will give you the strength to end your mental torture. So in combination with your work with Blane, you must enter into psychological treatment — and work your ass off, if only because you are loved by Sissy and you wish to give her peace.”
“I do,” Ivan croaked.
“This will not take long,” Delphie said. “A couple of weeks. Maybe a month. Then you will return to chemotherapy, but much stronger than before. This will lead you to. . .”
“Bone marrow transplant?” Sissy asked.
“Not yet,” Delphie said. “You will stay with Blane — drinking his herbs, doing his treatment — and stay in psychotherapy. After the chemotherapy, you will take the immunotherapy for whatever you need. This treatment will be effective for you, but also be very hard.”
“If — and it’s an if — the immunotherapy doesn’t work, you will need the bone marrow transplant,” Delphie said.
“Otis wants us to skip everything and go to the bone marrow transplant,” Sissy said.
“Otis knows that Ivan is exhausted,” Delphie said. “He doesn’t realize that some of this exhaustion is from mental suffering. He can’t differentiate.”
“Are you saying that my mental issues are the cause of my sickness?” Ivan asked.
“No, of course not,” Delphie said. “I’m saying that your mental issues are abetting your illness. You should be able to heal your illness if you heal your mental torment. Nothing will work — not even a bone marrow transplant — unless you learn to forgive yourself.”
“Forgive myself,” Ivan said. He looked at Delphie. “Is it even possible?”
“Absolutely,” Delphie said.
“So there is hope,” Sissy said.
“There is lots of hope,” Delphie said. “Do you have a third question?”
Sissy and Ivan looked at each other. Ivan nodded.
“Ivan wants to know if we should marry,” Sissy said.
“Why is that funny?” Ivan asked, irritably.
“Of course you should marry,” Delphie said. “You don’t need me to tell you this. You were born for each other. You belong together — and you know this!”
Ivan let out a kind of sigh. The breath seemed to deflate him.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow...
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