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During a period of nine years I was not well for more than...
During a period of nine years I was not well for more than a few months at a time. We moved to the South in the hope of finding a better climate, but there was no improvement in my condition. I was sick at one time for nearly eight months, spending six weeks in a hospital in New Orleans. That was in 1907. In 1909 we left the South and settled in East Rutherford, N. J., but during the first two years there I was practically a wreck, and was very often home from my work. A doctor from Carlstadt was my attending physician, and he came every day for about five weeks. He could not diagnose my case. Some days he said it was anemia, other days he would call it lung or stomach trouble, until finally my wife asked him to tell her the truth about me. Then he said that I had lung trouble and could not possibly live more than nine months. My wife nearly broke down after the doctor left that morning, but she did not tell me what he had said until a few months ago.
After that I was never well. I always had a severe headache and was also extremely weak, so I again went under the care of a physician, whose diagnosis differed from that of the other doctor. To relieve me of the terrible headache he gave me an opiate, and this was continued every second day for two weeks, until I was so affected by the poison that I did not know myself or any one else. Finally, one night, the foreman where I worked visited me, but I did not know him, and the next day I was removed to a hospital in Passaic, for the purpose of undergoing an operation. I left a few days later, but I cannot say that I was entirely well. I felt unhappy, a burden to myself, cranky to my wife and children, dissatisfied dissatisfied everything, and I often wished for death.
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J. S. BRAITHWAITE, M.A.
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