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#1576: Willa Cather to Irene Miner Weisz, April 18, 1942

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⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩ My dear Irene1:

I surely was not feeling very ill the afternoon you came to see me, and I enjoyed our visit so much - more than I can tell you. But the next day I went to have my throat doctor paint my throat with argyrol, and for some unknown reason he took my temperature. He found it was 102.8, and personally conducted me to his hospital without letting me go home, (three blocks), to get even a toothbrush. Well, the temperature went on jumping way up for some days, and that let me in for a set of trying examinations besides making me feel very weak - just liquid diet, etc. By poking me thoroughly the doctors found a sore spot on my right side - said to be inflamed gall bladder. That meant X-rays, etc. The pictures did show some stones and that the pesky thing was not functioning properly. After four or five days of this my temperature did drop to normal and even below. Of course, the surgeons would like to operate as a "preventive of further trouble", and think it would improve my general health. But I have never had a single throb of pain there and did not know I had a gall bladder until they scientifically poked me. I am not going to rush into an operation as a "preventive," but I am going to follow a diet and take care of the wretched thing for a while. Of course, the high fever and liquid diet have taken the strength out of me a good deal, but today I had a little solid food and feel already better.

I write you about this, my dear, simply because I do not ⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩ see how I am able to give myself the visit in Red Cloud3 with Carrie4 and Mary5 which I have looked forward to so long. I hate to disappoint them and I hate to disappoint myself, but it will take me some time to get back my normal vitality6, and I suppose I shall have to keep this defective organ under observation for some time. I don't want any word about it spread abroad and I do not want Elsie7 to know about it, or anyone except Carrie and Mary - I know they will keep it to themselves. I hate to be sick and I hate to be "defective".

Well, we did have a nice visit, didn't we? And Roscoe8 is sitting up and it looks as if he were going to be himself again.! That is a great comfort. As soon as I begin to lead a normal life again and see my friends and go to a few concerts, I shall be happy and be myself. But really, life on the flat of your back and liquid diet is too dreary to be continued. I would rather take any chance than submit to that. Yes, we did have a good visit, dear Irene, and you must never come to New York2 without hunting me up. Promise me that, and you let Carrie and Mary know about this queer upset.

Very lovingly Willie

I can't write about it again—though I suppose I must explain to Roscoe why I dropped out of his life as soon as he began to get better!

FROM CATHER 570 PARK.9, NEW YORK CITY2 Mrs. C. W. Weisz1, 3270 Lake Shore Drive, Chicago10, Illinois. NEW YORK,N.Y.2 APR 19 1942 230PM Illness