April: Week 6

April, furious that Paul called her mother and told her about the cancer, says their relationship is over. Paul says he had no choice—April was delirious with a 105-degree fever and he was her emergency contact—and he'd do the same thing again. It's the one thing she asked him not to do, April says, though she still wants to know how her mother reacted. He tells her it was a short conversation; her mother was worried. He also points out that April is not very adept at seeing things from other people' perspectives—and she's quick to cast someone off if they break ranks with her just once. Except for Leah, she tells Paul. Her friend is a "flake," but April never holds it against her. Paul suggests that Leah got in before April "closed the gates." April admits that she was an emotional wreck as a child, and her mother always told her to toughen up. She also rewarded April by writing a check mark on her hand every time she did something good. April used to love it but in time, started to feel like her mother was checking her off like an item on a list—a child she didn't have to worry about as much as Daniel. Paul says that April has gotten used to being praised as her mother's hero, the perfect kid, and he suggests she's incorporated him into that pattern: When he inevitably told her mother about the illness, April would be praised for her toughness. April caves a bit, admitting that she'd thought her cancer would "clean her out" and relieve her from obsessing over being the best at everything. She says she doesn't believe in anything anymore: love, family, her own body. Paul tells her that could be a good place to start; it may be time for rebirth. He asks her to call him when she gets the results of her blood test that week, and after he helps her up from the couch, April leaves.