You guys know that Bertha has had cancer for years, right?
And now, because of the chemo, which has not cured her cancer, she also has acute leukemia.
And because the chemo has so battered her, she keeps getting other sicknesses - pneumonia, whatever.
She has been very, very sick recently. A friend of Primo's who has been helping Bertha called Primo the other night to tell him that Bertha was in the ICU.
Now Primo doesn't know what to do.
"She only calls me when she needs something," he said.
Which is true. She needed money to pay her taxes last year and we helped her. She needed money for the cat's medication and we helped her. When she needs work on her computer, Primo helped.
But she only calls when she wants something.
When Primo wants something, like to walk his stepdaughter down the aisle, he doesn't get it. Bertha kept him from going to the wedding, which I still think was really, really mean.
"You loved her for a long time," I said. "Maybe you should call her. She's a good person."
Primo snorted. "You've never had anything nice to say about her before."
I paused. "I am not happy with many of the things that she has done, but I don't think she deserves to die like this. I don't think she deserves to have cancer. All I wanted was for her not to be a factor in our lives."
"I don't know if I should call her," he said. "She has never wanted to hear anything about my life. She doesn't even want to hear about our cats. All I wanted was for her to move on and be happy - maybe meet someone who was a better match. I stayed with her longer than I should have, but I wanted to wait until I got the girls out of college. Maybe I'll just call the girls."
Which he does.
And then, a few days later, he gets an email that Bertha's condition has worsened - she is in a non-responsive state - and that it is not going to be long now.
"I didn't even call her!" he says.
I don't know what to say. I didn't like Bertha just because of the way she treated Primo, but I can understand why she would be upset that he didn't want to be married to her any more and wouldn't want to hear about his new life without her. I would be bothered by anyone wanting to divorce me, but Primo is a really good guy. He's a good person with a big heart and it had to have been a big blow to Bertha to lose him. (For those of you new to this blog, I did not meet Primo until after he filed for divorce, so I am not the proximate cause of that breakup.)
So now he feels guilty but he's still a little bit angry that she wouldn't let him come to M's wedding. And that she only calls when she wants money.
And we are just waiting for the call that she has died.