Granny Weatherall is irritated by Doctor Harry's presence. She feels that Doctor Harry patronizes her, so she does not enjoy his visits. More than anything, she is upset that a doctor half her age must tend to her. Granny Weatherall resents the fact that everyone treats her as if she is a child to be humored.
In the story, Granny Weatherall is very sick and is actually dying. However, the formidable old woman refuses to acknowledge this. Whenever the idea of death arises in her mind, she thinks of her father, who died at one-hundred-and-two years old. When she was sixty, Granny feared that death would soon claim her. Inexplicably, life had continued. Now, at nearly eighty years old, she can no longer conceive of death; it seems a foreign topic to her, and she has no desire to entertain its possibility.
So, Granny is annoyed when Doctor Harry comes calling. His familiar manners exasperate her, so she retaliates by hurling insults at him. Towards the end of the story, Doctor Harry is called to her bedside again. For her part, Granny is upset; she tells Cornelia (her daughter) that she saw him not five minutes before. However, Cornelia gently tells Granny that many hours have passed since she last saw Doctor Harry.
Doctor Harry gives Granny an injection, possibly a sedative. In the last moments of her life, she hallucinates and imagines seeing a "rosy nimbus" around Doctor Harry. She tells him he looks like a saint. Ironically, however, she tells the doctor to "shut up" minutes before she dies.