Sunday, October 21, 2007

Rode to and from work on Friday in waves of rain. The trees were so red that your heart would bleed if I could tell you. The yellows were like sunshine from another land, and the oranges talked persistently of harvest.

No, I have not lost my mind. Or perhaps I have. At this time there is no me, really just a suggestion of a universe to come. I accept.

Story

In the background is McLachlan singing Adia: "We are born innocent--believe me Adia, we are still innocent...it's easy, we all falter, but does it matter?" In the long run, when the earth crashes into the sun, or spins out into outer space where there is no air, or the aliens come to take over the earth because we've trashed it, and we are condemned to board their spaceship and be transported to the outer reaches of hell...no. It doesn't matter.

But in the heart, where I happen to hold all the burdens that will fit (though I think it may burst)...yes. It does matter.

Last night I had an odd sort of--well, I described it to John as a fantasy, but it was really more of a waking dream. I was lying in a hospital bed, close to death, and John and some others came into my room with Dr. Schauer, who told me a new chemo had been developed, a very different kind of chemo, and they were going to give it to me. They started to infuse this chemo into my veins, and I lifted up just slightly out of my body, and I thought, it's a joke. So I said to Dr. Schauer, if this is dying, bring it on. But he insisted, in that nice way he has, that it was not a joke, and we were really hoping it would work. John and the others were chuckling at my reaction, but they also kept encouraging me. I felt as though I were lying on a magic carpet, and the most wonderful serum was flowing through my veins, the way air flows through your lungs into your veins in life, but I was dying, to be reborn, to something totally new. And I floated...

Crazy? Denial? I don't think so. Will I die soon? I don't know, but I'm doing well right now. I just want to fix all the things I did wrong in life, and that's one burden too many. I never learned the first lesson: take care of yourself. I am learning it now, too late.

May

Sunday, October 14, 2007

To blog or not to blah, blah, blah...

Though I love to write, I've never been able to "journal".

Without an audience to write for, I don't seem to be able to get close to the truth. You'd think it would be the other way around, but I can only be really honest when I have at least a theoretical audience. Journaling seems pointless to me.

On the other hand, while my site counter reminds me that the whole world doesn't have me bookmarked, there are some things that seem inappropriate to write about publicly. What happened to my daughter over the past month is one of them. I have no right to bare her experiences to the world.

And yet...there's a line--a very thin one--and I'd like to try to find it, difficult as that may be.

Many people in the world, including both me and my daughter, have emotional illnesses or disabilities. Mental illness carries a heavy stigma, and while psychiatric disorders know no class, they tend to disable and impoverish individuals, and so they are associated with homelessness, lack of cleanliness, lack of intelligence, etc., etc., etc. That's why those who have high-level careers hide them. But until everyone can hold his or her head up high and declare that they have a psychiatric disability in the same way they might mention they're an insulin-dependent diabetic--without shame--that's not going to change.

But I didn't start this post to give a lecture on stigma. I just wanted to say that my daughter's been through a very tough time, and I wasn't doing very well myself this past month. The sh-t fairy dropped by, and a whole bunch of stresses happened at the same time, and now I'm trying to recover. I've started using the SAD (seasonal affective disorder) light in the morning (click here to learn about SAD and light therapy). It seems to help. The stresses have lightened as well (all cars are running and my daughter seems to understand what she needs to do to get better). I finally had my appointment with an endocrinologist, and he's started me on insulin. He gave me a choice--that or one of the old oral diabetes meds, which I think are very bad drugs--so I picked insulin. The needles are tiny and very thin, and the insulin (12 units of Lantus long-acting) is not irritating, so it's no big deal. I've given myself three injections so far, and I barely felt them.

I'm supposed to go up on the dose 2-4 units every several days until I see better control than I have now. (It's nice when a doctor treats you like you have a brain.) I'll wait a week the first time, to allow the blood level to stabilize, then probably go up four, since I'm hardly seeing any change at all after three shots. The endocrinologist also seemed to think I was on too high a dose of Metformin. He ordered kidney tests, which my oncologist does frequently anyway, but I have the feeling he might suggest at some point substituting more insulin for the Metformin. Perfectly fine with me. I hate taking all the pills I have to take.

Well, if you've gotten this far, bless you. And may the Red Sox continue to play, all the way to the world series. If you'd like to read something about baseball, instead of all the crap I've been posting tonight, click here. And if Terry Francona happens to read this blog, I'd just like to say: I hope for your sake that all that bright pink gum is sugarless. Otherwise--wow. Some dentist is going to get rich on you.

Oh! One more thing I almost forgot. I got two blue ribbons and two red ribbons for my photos at the Portland Fair. Of course, everyone else got either a blue or a red as well. I mentioned that to the nice lady who chairs the photo exhibit committee, and she said, "Yes! We really got a lot of good photos this year". It's kind of like every kid getting to be student of the month, even if he farts at the teacher and spits in your lunchbox. Those ribbons must be one of those "inalienable rights" our Declaration of Independence so aptly described. Anyway, I won $18. So I guess it was all worth it. Plus I have four Christmas gifts ready now.

Have a wonderful Monday!

Ripely,
May

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Question: if you have three cars, how many can break down at one time?

Don't tell me that. So far it's only two.



I took these two photos in August, before the leaves started turning. The photo on top is of the East Haddam Bridge over the Connecticut River. The bottom picture is of the Goodspeed Opera House and the Gelston House Restaurant, which are just to the right of the visible end of the bridge in the top photo. I walked across the East Haddam Bridge many times during youth and adult Camp Bethel campmeeting weeks in the summers of my childhood. Sometimes the man who opened the bridge for boats too tall to go under it would give us a ride on the opening bridge. At night, huge spiders would come out. I preferred walking across during the daytime.

Pat J., I bet this brings back a few memories...

May

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Well, my daughter and I are speaking. If I told you all, "it would wonder your mind".

The more I know, the less I know.

May

What the heck was that?

Well, I pressed the button that said 'Allow for transliteration to Hindi script. This will help us'. I didn't realize it would make my blog unreadable, even to me.

Anyway, it was just a note that, not being a true minimalist, I changed the background color (and a few others as well). Blue-greens are my favorite colors, along with red.

Happy Autumn!
May

हे! इत'एस नॉट व्हिते नुथिं' अन्य्मोरे!

अस यू कैन सी, इत'एस नोव अ लोवेल्य सा-ग्रीनिश कलोर। कूल!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

If you want to read...

...the sad, sad story of why I have a new blog, check out the last couple of posts on my old one, "Ripeness is All". In fact, you might have to in order to make the title of this one make any sense :>)

Anyway, I've changed from black dotted to white nuthin', but I'll fill it with all kinds of pictures--you'll see! I asked my partner his opinion, and he said it's hard to read white on black for a long time. So here I am with this wonderful minimalist white.

First post--accomplis! Now I'm off to customize my new blog.

May