Jean was a Filipina divorcee in Louisville, Kentucky. She was 59 but looked 48 and thought she was 18. Two years in her dialysis treatment the dialysis center was bought by a bigger company. This change brought in new Dialysis Technicians. One of them was Mike, a Zac Efron look alike in his thirties. Jean who has a weakness for good looking could not take her eyes off him.
It seemed like Mike was one of those who did not welcome minorities. Jean noticed him picking on the only Filipina Tech. A few weeks later the Filipina tech was gone. Jean was the only Asian patient. She braced herself to be the next casualty.
Contrary to her fears Mike was good to her, doing things not expected of his job. He helped her put her shoes on, massaged her leg during a bad cramp, folded her blanket after her run, etc. He was careful not to hurt her whenever he was assigned to her. He came over to say a few sweet words whenever he was not her tech even when he was working in the room across the hall.
When an African American patient tried to get Jean's attention and she ignored the man Mike passed by dropping the word "racist" out of context, an accusation in a code. She felt the stab. She was infuriated because it simply was not true. As Mike walked back she said "That patient has been harassing me all the time".
"Why don't you just avoid him?" Mike replied.
"That’s what I’ve been doing."
Mike seemed to realize his subtle attack was out of line.
Jean avoided any conversation with Mike from there on and pretended to be asleep when he enters the room. He sent her apologetic looks which she pretended not to notice. Until during one treatment her lady tech told her to walk around the room to bring her blood pressure up. She looked around for Mike in order to avoid him. She was asked to walk around the room twice. The second time got the two of them crossing paths. Their eyes said volumes. Jean could not resist anymore. Their ‘connection’ was back on.
Jean always liked younger men and have dated quite a few but Mike was younger than her sons. The decades between their ages would be a long jump off a cliff called ‘Sexual Harassment Gorge’. Still, while their imaginary relationship lasted, she felt like she lived inside a hologram of a love affair.