The Nineteen Stages of Grief

by Melissa Chiasson

Denial: “What? I can’t die this young, there must be a mistake. Your nurse probably just mixed up the test results.”

Anger: “That nurse is so fucking dumb.”

Bargaining: “Look, I’ll pay any amount for you to cure me. I know it looks like I don’t have a lot of money, but I do know a lot of drug dealers, and I’m pretty sure people would pay a lot of money to have sex with me.”

Anger, Part Deux: ”What do you mean it’s incurable?”

Anger, Part Trois: ”What do you mean you wouldn’t pay to have sex with me?”

Drinking: “Look, If you can’t cure me, I can at least drown my pain with my good friend Jack Daniels and then drunkenly text my ex-boyfriends about my impending death.”

Explanation: ”I just keep a bottle of it in my purse at all times in case a surprise quinceañera or fatal diagnosis pops up.”

Over-friendliness: ”Hey, ladies, grab all your nurse friends and come on down to examination room 2! We’re having a party and you’re all invited!”

Faux-apologizing: ”Sorry, doctor, I wasn’t aware that this was a No Fun Zone.”

Depression: ”Well, I guess I’m never going to find out how Cougar Town ends, so I might as well just die now.”

Vomiting: ”Really sorry about that. I’ll buy you a new shirt with all of my drug dealer/sex money.”

Bill Cosby Impression: “Look at my colorful sweater! I was on The Bill Cosby Show!”

Acceptance: ”You know, I’ve had a pretty good run, and I have a lot to be thankful for. Thanks for talking me through this, doctor, and I apologize for the violent mood swings.”

Arson: ”I will burn this doctor’s office to the ground if it is the last goddamn thing I do.”

Placation: ”Please don’t call the cops, it was a joke, I swear! You know what Bill Cosby would say about a situation like this?”

Faux-apologizing, Part Deux: “Sorry, sir, I realize a joke comparing how white people and black people eat jello probably wasn’t in the best of taste.”

Spiking a Football: ”BOOYAH, DOCTOR, IN YOUR FACE.”

Reflection: ”Well, doc, we’ve had one hell of a ride together, but I guess it’s time for me to head home and get my affairs in order. But before I go, are you sure I can’t interest you in a body shot?”

Body Shots: “I knew you’d come around.”