The little boy’s appendix surgery is a popular ticket, and the operating theatre is hopping. Steph, Jo and Alex watch as Meredith performs the surgery. Alex is disgruntled as usual, and his presence spooks Meredith a little bit. Jo gets a page and takes off.
In the scrub room, Arizona is prepping for surgery when Leah walks in. Arizona calmly confronts Leah about dragging Callie into this mess. Arizona tries to explain that she cared for Leah but it wasn’t meant to be. Leah, as it turns out, could really care less about that part of all of this. She comes back at Arizona, saying that once Callie found out about them, she refused to teach her and put their patient in danger. From Leah’s perspective, what happened to her was unfair and she wanted to stop it from happening to anyone else. Arizona’s eyes tell us she knows there is truth to what Leah is saying. They perform the amputation and Arizona goes out of her way to teach Leah through the operation, even letting her amputate one of the legs herself.
Alex comes to check in on his appendix patient, who is doing great after his surgery with Meredith. Alex is still pissed at Meredith for unintentionally swiping his patient, but she offers him a gift. She presents him with a “declaration of love” document, which if signed by both he and Jo, frees them of any fraternization issues. Alex freaks because he thinks if he presents this to Jo, she will think he’s pressuring her and take off. Just like Izzie. Meredith tells him to cut the shit and get to signing.
Baby Oscar is also doing well, and will be available for adoption when he recovers. Cristina puts Shane’s name on the paperwork so he can be the medical contact for Oscar’s new family for years to come.
Kidney Guy is now threatening to sue the hospital if he doesn’t get his kidney back. April has had just about enough and yells at him to stop. Just then Jo comes in with news that Brain Dead guy has officially passed away. Kidney Guy is confused and April has to explain that his friend’s heart finally gave out, in addition to his brain. Kidney Guy breaks down, as the reality of the situation sets in. His friend is gone and he is devastated. He saved his life once, but he couldn’t this time.
In the break room, Arizona is tending to her aching leg, and Cristina sits down to join her. She fills Arizona in on Oscar and the full life he will have ahead of him now. Out of the blue, Cristina brings up the airplane crash and asks Arizona ever dreams about it. Arizona says she does, especially when she’s stressed or nervous. She thinks about Lexie, and the pilot, and the terror and sadness of those few days. Cristina remembers Arizona screaming. (The thought of it is enough to bring tears to my own eyes.) As Cristina does, she makes a joke of it, but she takes Arizona’s hand and holds it tightly.
And there they are. Two people who have shared an experience of unimaginable desperation and fear, who’ve survived. They’ve stumbled, and fallen, and had their worlds turned upside down, but they’ve survived. Now it’s time to really live.
Because of the gurney accident, Jackson and Stephanie have to fill out HR paperwork. Man, for a department that has never done a damn thing before, they sure are rocking it today. When it rains, it pours. They are stuck filling out the paperwork in the same, small room. Jackson decides it’s finally time to truly apologize for what he did to Stephanie. What Jackson needs is forgiveness is so he can go on being blissfully happy, without this nagging guilt hanging over him. Stephanie isn’t quite ready to give him that sweet release. She tells him that she had never in her life been on the receiving end of pity. She’s not that girl. Jackson can go on feeling terrible for the rest of his life, but as far as she’s concerned, he simply exists. Nothing more.
When Callie arrives home, Arizona is waiting for her. She asks Callie about the meeting with HR, but Callie just wants to go to bed. Arizona speaks out, telling Callie that Leah was right, and that they did do her a disservice as teachers. Callie yells back that she knows that, but it doesn’t make this any less fucked up. She’s got a blemish on her record now, and it makes her think of all the awful, painful things that have happened this year. Callie isn’t sure that she and Arizona will ever be ok, and she simply cannot listen to one more apology, Arizona breaks down, in one of the most beautifully truthful scenes we’ve ever seen on Greys. Here is exactly what she said, because it is what we have all needed her to say for so long.
“I’m sorry. I feel like all I’ve been doing is thinking about myself. For over a year, since the plane crash, all I have been thinking about is myself. I had to figure out how to be me. I used to be someone who was always happy. I woke up happy! I was someone who used to skate at work and then this happened. And everything is hard, and everything took thought and planning. And my life felt like it didn’t fit me anymore, and I just wanted to tear it all down and start over. Just throw it away and find a life that fit who I am now. But I’m starting to feel like I know who I am again. And I’ve had to give up things but what I’ve learned is that I don’t need much. I don’t need much to be happy, I don’t even need two legs. But I do know that I need you. And I need Sofia, and I need you, and I’m afraid now that I’ve learned all of that that I made you give up on me.”
Callie takes this all in, and walks away. Arizona bursts into the most painful sobs, like her chest can’t even hold them all in anymore. If she loses Callie, she’s loses this tenuous new beginning. Just as the walls start to cave in on her, Callie re-appears with a box in her hands. Like a modern day Princess Charming, she slips a heelie onto her wife’s trembling foot.
Cristina and Owen are still hashing out his breakup with Emma. She admits that she was upset about his breakup, because Emma was everything Owen had wanted. The reason Cristina walked away was so he could be free to have this life, and yet, he gave it up when he had the chance. Owen thinks she just wanted to make sure he was squared away so she didn’t have to worry about him. Oh Crowen, will you two ever understand each other?
True love isn’t about blind acceptance. There isn’t some magical formula that makes it work. It happens with you open your heart so wide, that you can fit someone else’s inside. Flaws and all. Lifting each other up and being ready to catch the other person when they fall, or cheer them when they soar. So outside, in front of the home they share, Callie teaches Arizona to fly again. They giggle, and hug, and heal as Arizona wobbles and wheels once more. Long live the Heelys. Long live Calzona.