We went back to ICU and TCU, Julie, Betsy and I, Wednesday afternoon. We drove the streets, rode the elevators, walked the halls, breathed the disinfectant. We peered through the window in door to the Neuro Trama ICU. "You were in the room across from the nurses' station," I told Betsy. "And Aaron was a couple of rooms down from yours."
Since they were wheeled in on stretchers, when they were in the hospital Julie and Betsy had no sense of direction. I knew it too well--the waiting room with an ice machine, the restroom with a sink with a counter to set your contact solution on while putting your contacts in your eyes, closing time at the cafeteria, the nurses' station where they would give you a blanket at three o'clock in the morning.
Along with the main campus, we also visited TCU, where Julie spent five weeks. The nurses were delighted to see us. We laughed together, remembering the day the shower room flooded during Julie's shower extravaganza. We sat in the dayroom where Julie and I decorated cookies one day after she graduated to a wheelchair, and where I escaped to cry on the days Julie was depressed, and where all the patients gathered one day to watch the crack house across the street burn.
But this time we were at ICU and TCU for just a visit. After a few minutes we walked out together--all three of us--and came home together.