Impatience, Impatiens

I’ve always considered myself a patient person, not always, mind you, but most of the time. I am certainly not patient or forgiving when I’m driving and someone cuts me off. I curse and hold up a finger. When our son was really young and asked what it meant I told him it meant “wait a minute.” He believed that for years.

I’m patient on supermarket lines, I’m patient with (most) people, I listen well, I like to think I’m a good, loyal friend. Indeed, I have high standards for myself and used to think everyone was like me but Life taught me that lesson the hard way several times over. How do you know differently if the way your family acts is the only way you know?

My friends are all very different from me but now what keeps us together is not lunch dates, meeting in the city on a weekend for brunch or long telephone calls but stupid text messages or IM’s.  I confuse them all the time as my adult children roll their eyes and grimace.

I hate that, text messages to say Happy Birthday, text messages to say Hello, text messages to find out how a surgery went, text messages to show your deepest sympathy and one death announcement I had to read about on Facebook. It’s all the norm now.

Of course, my adult children, think I am old-fashioned and nuts. Beside that the iPhone to me is a strange and complicated piece of equipment, why can’t we just use the phone as the phone was really intended? To talk. It doesn’t seem popular anymore except for those of us “oldies.”

I will ask my kids to call their grandparents and they will do that responsibly but they will say “they weren’t home, we will try again later.” “Did you leave a message” I ask? A reasonable question, I think, and they look at me like the dinosaur that I am and say with a scolding dismay “Mom, our generation doesn’t LEAVE messages, we just try again later.”

It’s no surprise that I’m not good with change but I try as best I can. Knowing I’m not good with change makes me try harder than most. At this point in our lives my husband and I are waiting for change to happen, waiting for a clue to point us in the right direction on what we should do and where we should go in the future for the next chapter in our lives.

My friends say that “I will know it when it happens” and I believe that is true, but it has been a very long time and being patient has been getting harder and harder. I need to relax, look within and wait for the Spring. I think things will start to get clearer then. If nothing else, the dreadful Winter, will be over and Life will begin anew.

 

Crazy Looks Like Me, Crazy Looks Like You

It’s raining sheets, like unfolded plastic wrap falling from the sky. The clouds overhead are not dismally gray or black, nor are they white and cheerful, they are just the background for the rain, a neutral color of uncertainty.
.
My younger sister, Shelly, sat at the kitchen table in the dining room, alone, her head down, her eyes unfocused. She had a tiny silver spoon in her hand and she was stirring her coffee, over and over again. I don’t think she even realized she was still doing it. I said “Good Morning” to her but she never answered.” She wouldn’t speak to any of us.

 

Shelly was wearing her same  blue striped pajama bottoms, the dingy white tee-shirt and a pair of thick, pink socks. She hadn’t brushed her hair, it seemed, for weeks. She wanted to just stay in bed and be alone, the only thing she would say was “I’m not crazy, do you think I’m crazy, because I’m not.” I bit my lip.

I wasn’t trying to be mean, honestly, but I had begged her to see a therapist and our parents forced to talk to someone and she went with them once, kicking and screaming the entire time. She never even went inside.

 

 

I didn’t know what to do, but I did know that this was not helping her. Staying in bed all day, getting up only for coffee or her one meal, a bologna and cheese sandwich on white bread with mayonnaise  that our mom would leave her in the fridge. Shelly told all of us “it was none of our business” but of course it was our business, we loved her and hated seeing her fall apart, a little more each day.

I didn’t know how long I could take looking at the shell that was my little sister, curled up in bed with the light off and no life coming from that room. She slept all the time. Once, I started playing music in my room, music I loved and thought she loved too. I thought she might enjoy it but she screamed and moaned for me to turn it off in such a violent, out of control way, that my parents immediately came and scolded me, they turned my music off. It was upsetting Shelly.

She needed help, she desperately needed help, she was getting worse and my parents and I couldn’t handle her anymore. Now, she was not sleeping at all and roaming our apartment at all hours demanding attention. I had a full-time job as a Customer Service Representative and I was already in trouble for missing too many “sick” days. Our parents were older and not in good physical shape and our little brother, Josh, was just eight, a mere baby himself and, of course, troubled and confused.

For a week we whispered among ourselves to arrange for an intervention, we knew something had to be done.  Time moved quickly, it was 4 pm on Tuesday and the day had come. I sat in the corner, biting my nails. I wanted my sister to get better but I did not want to be part of the intervention. My parents made me so II also felt like an accomplice and hated that feeling. I hated being in the middle of everyone.

We were all assembled in the living room, Shelly was in her room, sleeping. The people from Edgehill Hospital were waiting right out side the door. They decided that our dad should approach Shelly gently by first calling her name and asking her to come out of her room. She refused.”I’m tired” she murmured.”Maybe later.” After several more attempts and being exasperated, our dad asked her to come out again but I could hear the strain in his voice… Finally, in a fit of rage, he broke the door down, and started yelling at her. He screamed for a couple of minutes, his patience worn and suddenly stopped to find Shelly on the bed, still, not breathing, and cold. He called 911 immediately but we knew she was gone.

She died from an overdose of pills that she had accumulated for many years. We found two empty bottles of alcohol on the floor next to her bed. The note that she scribbled with a purple pen said this: ” I hate my life, it’s all black an” that was the end. She couldn’t even finish the sentence about her young life.

No one could speak after the initial gasp of horror, we each sat in our own corner, after the ambulance came and pronounced her dead. No one  spoke to each another, harboring our own guilt, our own excuse, our own irresponsible part we had in Shelly’s life.

All of us thought we killed her. I know I did, for sure.

 

 

 

Support Thyroid Change, Please

Overview of the thyroid system (See Wikipedia:...

Overview of the thyroid system (See Wikipedia:Thyroid). To discuss image, please see Talk:Human body diagrams (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A really important organization with lovely people.  Here is my published blog post.

http://www.thyroidchange.org/blog.html

http://www.thyroidchange.org/2/post/2014/02/you-call-them-curveballs.html

Enhanced by Zemanta

FIBROMYALGIA: Now With Added Trigeminal Neuralgia

English: 'A pain stabbed my heart as it did ev...

English: ‘A pain stabbed my heart as it did every time I saw a girl I loved who was going the opposite direction in this too-big world.’ (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hey Fibro. Can you hear me? I’m a patient, you’re the chronic illness.

Just pile it on, OK?  Not that you are asking my permission or anything, you’re not. One diagnosis after another, I figure there’s more to come, how can I not think that way? I feel betrayed by my rheumatologist who said it wouldn’t get worse. Yeah, right.  I’m an almost 57 years old, (OLD is the operative word,) woman who is utterly falling apart physically. Nope, not even plateauing. Yesterday afternoon I had an appointment with a neurologist for TMJ, I was referred by a doctor I trust. TMJ  causes a great deal of pain, daggers of sharp pain waking me up in the middle of the night, relentless pain. All a chronic pain patient needs, right?

“I don’t have ANYTHING to do with THAT” “I can’t help you at all, said the young doctor.  I don’t  know why she sent me here, he said, that is not  part of my job.” When things are down, and I am tired and feel sick already, I go down and tears started running down my cheeks. Here was my chance to take away one type of pain, I knew it wasn’t going to take away my Fibromyalgia, my chronic pain, my Imbalance, my sleep disturbances or  up my energy levels but at least I hoped that something, anything could take away one of my many types of pain I have. I asked him to call the referring doctor, really, the only doctor I trust in the world.

He was gone a good fifteen message and I took the time to “pity party,” now sobbing into my hands and getting red and swollen with a drippy nasty face. As Oprah has described it, I did “the ugly cry.” I cried  loud and hard and the people at the desk must have thought I was having  a mental breakdown which in a way I probably was. So, after my cry-fest the doctor comes in and says there has been some progress. “Really?, I thought skeptically” I was still crying and he was not acknowledging that in any way whatsoever. Not one, “I’m sorry you are so upset.” Not a :, “I know this must be difficult for you”, NOTHING. He ignored me. I found that appalling. He looked through me. Thanks, Doc. My internist did that too a long time ago. I remember it in detail, she, I’m sure doesn’t, just part of her busy day. DOCTORS:  Be human, SHOW EMPATHY. PLEASE

He then proceeds to tell me that I have another condition ( as if he forgot a teaspoon of sugar in a recipe) : ANOTHER CHRONIC CONDITION NAMED TRIGEMINAL NUERALGIA AND it has to be addressed immediately, which means another medicine, probably damaging my kidneys and liver so it has to be watched carefully. Blood tests, follow-up visits etc,

Guess what? Not only did I try it for two days but it made me MORE dizzy and light-headed. I missed a festival in town that I was longing to go to, I missed out. Again. So, tonight I stopped. I was supposed to double the dosage today and I said “No way.” I was tripping over everything and I looked and acted drunk, without have had anything alcoholic to drink. I COULD NOT WALK, EVEN WITH MY CANE. I’m taking over control. Got it?

Chuck the new medicine and call the non-empathic doctor who will most likely call in another script and call it a day. But this time, I’m ready and I WILL NOT CRY. I WANT ANSWERS AND NO MORE DRUGS IN MY SYSTEM. TELL ME WHAT TO DO WHEN I GET THE ATTACK, NOT PREVENT IT. NO MORE MEDS! I’M DONE.  I AM IN CONTROL, NOT YOU. ANY QUESTIONS? I’LL BE HAPPY TO ANSWER THEM, OH, AND I WILL LISTEN AND RESPOND BECAUSE EMPATHY IS MY STRONG POINT. LEARN SOMETHING.

Fibromyalgia 2013 – UPDATE

#Fibro - Awareness Day

#Fibro – Awareness Day (Photo credit: sand625)

I’m being a bad patient. Yes, I’m confessing. I have a doctor’s appointment with a new rheumy (as us Fibro patients like to call them) a new rheumatologist in about a week and I think I am going to postpone it. Again. My old rheumatologist who I do indeed love, takes about three hours to get there and back, usually more, and this one is only twenty minutes away, I’m getting lazy. However, this is the height of flu season and I really do not want to expose myself to the “flu factory” that is my doctor’s office. It is not just one office, it’s two buildings of sick people for every specialty in the world. It’s a factory for any illness you can think of. In addition to having Fibromyalgia, I also have an auto-immune disease of the thyroid called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Just glance at me and I will catch it.

This is a tough choice. Had I been feeling extremely poorly now with Fibro I would surely go for the appointment but the fact is I’m feeling pretty good. (I know, don’t jinx it) It’s the first time in many years that I am NOT complaining about aches, pains, moving or walking. SHUT UP! my friends will say but no, I cannot. Of course, I still have Fibro Fog to the extreme (really scary) and I am on enough medication to kill a horse but this last combination of drugs apparently is doing a little something-something. You guys understand…

Sure, I suffer from the tender points, but I don’t even count them, they are as natural to me as getting up in the middle of the night to pee. I accept it. And yes, I have all the other symptoms of Fibromyalgia: IBS, tingling, headaches, “yada yada yada*” but overall I feel better. I’m not asking for fabulous, I’m just satisfied with better. Better to a Fibromyalgia patient is like a miracle, BUT it is a miracle for however long it lasts. I think a lot of it has to do with my endorphins being raised quite a lot. Wish I could say it was from exercise but let’s not get too crazy here. It’s the result of medication, and no, not-self medication.

Right now, I’m just appreciating feeling a little different, in a positive way. I want my Fibro friends, and the newbie Fibrosmyalgia patients to know that it is, indeed possible. Don’t give up hope, maybe one day you will feel better too with the right combination of medicine. Keep fighting. I know there is no cure but you need to trust your doctor, or team of doctors and they need to believe in YOU.

For now, until it changes, I am happy, fine, content. Do I think it will stay like this? Probably not. Do I hope so, definitely: yes. But, as we all know with Fibro, we have absolutely no control over anything, which really is the hardest part of all.

Let’s wish each other a whole lot of luck.

If you have questions for me, especially those who are new to Fibromyalgia, feel free to ask, I’m happy to help.

*yada, yada, yada from Seinfeld

Who We Are, Now

260/365 Days: Who are we in this complicated w...

When I was in my early twenties I had a very painful tonsillectomy. As soon as I was in the hospital I had to change into the soft, faded blue and white hospital gown. I had my plastic ID bracelet branded to my wrist and I became another person. I felt it as soon as I sat in the patients’ lounge; I was no longer the same person, I was a patient. We were in a special club, wishing each other luck, asking each other what surgery we were having, social rules had changed dramatically. There were no expectations here and our uniform bonded us together, the rules had all been changed and we intuitively knew that.

I hadn’t remembered that strong feeling of changed identity until recently, when our house was deemed unlivable due to prior and present damage and destruction. Two days before we supposed to move to a motel, my husband broke his Achilles tendon, We waited hours in the ER and he needs surgery, very soon. He has been on crutches in the motel for the last five nights.

We are living in one room in a neighboring town’s motel. Two parents, our seventeen year old daughter and our nine-year old dog. It’s tight and airless, the windows don’t open. Our clothes, shoes, food and drinks  all over the room.  We look through big, black garbage bags with holes to find things; there is no organization just disarray. Right after that, Hurricane Irene came blustering through, roads are closed, electric wires are down, basements are flooded and fallen trees block the roads. I take our dog on many mini walks outside to see a different scenery than the pulled curtains of our small beige and brown room.

I am not the same person I was. I find myself wearing one or two tee-shirts with sweats, I brushed my hair once or twice in five days. I wear it in a very loose and messy ponytail and I don’t care what I look like. I lack affect. I can barely remember to brush my teeth. I am in another world. I walk differently, talk differently; I am quick to feel anger and frustration and unfortunately, it shows on my face. I am not charming,  I feel happy about nothing, I don’t chat on the phone unless I absolutely have to.

As a chronic patient myself I find it physically and emotionally draining.  I have been working through my pain, I have no choice. There is no one who can help me.  I am trying to hold my family together whose inner souls have invisible cracks; at least the cracks in our house are visible.

When we went back to our house yesterday for ten minutes to pick up more clothing I felt detached and distant. This was not my cozy nurturing home anymore this was a house that had betrayed me.  Tomorrow we check out of one motel and into another, with empty hours in-between. Tomorrow might be my husband’s surgery, we won’t know for sure until the morning. Sleep gives us all pleasure, it’s the passing of time to ease the pain.

REPOST: FOR INVISIBLE ILLNESS WEEK:Thyroid Disease And Fibromyalgia With A Touch Of Menopause

Don't give up

Image by quinn.anya via Flickr

I am NOT a Doctor. I may see a lot of Doctors but in no way am I one. I don’t pretend to be one. However, I am a patient, a chronic pain patient and I believe I know a whole lot more, personally, about these subjects than some Doctors do. Sorry, but it is true. This is only what I THINK, only what I FEEL and only what I have EXPERIENCED. For those who have read earlier posts about my dealings with Fibromyalgia, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Menopause, this is different; I’ve never once put my own theories down on (computer) paper. Also, for the young woman who responded to a post saying she will check out Fibromyalgia even though her Doctor said “He didn’t believe in it”  YOU GO GIRL!

I hope this will take the five or more years of suffering that I had to go through and help someone; HELPING just one person would make me extremely happy. I mean that from my heart. I think there is a correlation with the above- mentioned diseases/changes, at least for me there was, especially with Thyroid Disease and Fibromyalgia.

I went through Menopause about five years ago, it wasn’t too bad, I had the usual symptoms but it wasn’t anything I couldn’t bare. I think that Menopause was the catalyst to all these (bad) changes in my body. After being in menopause, I went to my annual physical where my Internist did the usual blood work. When the results came back, for the first time in my life, I had an underactive thyroid. (Thyroid disease DOES run in my family, both my mother and sister have it.) I was put on Synthroid (my opinion ONLY: I use brand name, NOT the generic.)  My symptoms were chronic pain, muscle pain, severe aches and pain, and extreme fatigue.  My own quote: ” I felt like I had the flu without the fever.” That is what I felt like day in and day out. I thought the Synthroid  (for my underactive thyroid) would help but it never did. For months I was in bed feeling worse and worse, my said Internist said “there is nothing further I can do for you” and walked out of the room leaving me inside, on the examining table, sobbing. True story.

She finally referred me to a Rheumatologist who looked at me and said I had “Scoliosis” and that with my thyroid disease (an auto-immune disease: Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis) I should be prepared to get OTHER auto-immune diseases. Gee, thanks. There was no mention of Fibromyalgia and since when did I have Scoliosis? Whatever.

I felt horrible, chronic pain, muscle pain, joint pain, I could barely get out of bed. I won’t even mention the doctor ( he gets lower case on purpose!) that I went to who treated me with very DANGEROUS drugs, I will spare you that. I have Fibromyalgia and I really do think, there may be a connection between Thyroid disease and Fibromyalgia. AGAIN, I am not a doctor. However, I recently read about a new study where they are trying to see if T3 levels are linked to Fibromyalgia. (Promising!?)

Please, if you are experiencing all the symptoms I mentioned, don’t let an ignorant doctor make you feel like a fool. You know YOUR body best. Keep fighting, keep researching and, go to a good Rheumatologist, this is the Doctor that you need for Fibromyalgia. I have a friend who has a Thyroid condition like me (Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis) and a severe case of Fibromyalgia and she only goes to an Endocrinologist. Big Mistake but she will not listen to me. Don’t be like her. I just want to help. If you do see a Doctor that scoffs at Fibromyalgia and doesn’t believe in it: leave, do not stay. Check out your Doctor on-line, I chose mine from a list that said he believed in Fibromyalgia, treated it and patients loved him. I am one of his biggest fans. You deserve this too. Good luck.

How I Stay Healthy??????

Considered a father of Western medicine, Hippo...

Image via Wikipedia

Give Us A Break……

There’s a fundamental mistake here: you are assuming I am healthy and I’m not. Along with thousands upon thousands of other patients I have a chronic pain disease and an auto-immune disease (not to mention others: IBS, narrow angled glaucoma, interstitial cystitis, painful and swollen joints, flare ups and….oh, is that too much? Because I could continue and I could also go blind instantly but that’s another post altogether.

First off, I am really not complaining just commenting and venting. “It is what it is” and it could be a lot worse: pain is not life threatening so I am grateful for that. TRULY. However, Fibromyalgia and other chronic pain disorders ARE extremely painful (and no it is NOT in our minds.) That is totally insulting. Also, there is little to relieve the pain, at best, and certainly no cure. Live with it? Not comforting. If this affected more men than women you bet there would be more research and no tiptoeing around about pain medication. The latest information frenzy that has all chronic pain patients up in arms (and my mother who saw a show on TV!) is that doctors and the media now are becoming increasingly hysterical about dispensing pain medication to THOSE OF US WHO ARE IN PAIN.

To me, it’s idiotic. I have a Doctor who writes prescriptions for Vicodin like they are gummy bears, lots of gummy bears, but when I tell him I have taken one and it doesn’t seem to help the pain, he insists it’s the only pain reliever he can dispense. Does that make any sense to you? Because, Vicodin itself is highly addictive and he writes prescriptions for them all the time YET he won’t write a prescription for half the amount for something different, like, I don’t know, Tylenol with Codeine? What am I missing here? A different class of pain killers? I am not swallowing pain killers for a high, I have tried Vicodin (one pill) on two separate occasions when I was in dire pain. It. Did. Not. Work.

I’m beginning to feel like the chronic pain community should an old-fashioned revolution. All the patients talk about it but I don’t think all of us have spoken directly to the doctors about it. I have but it does no good. Do you know why other patients are reluctant to be honest and I don’t blame them? Because we have to deal with the raised eyebrow, and the ‘are you a junkie quizzical smirk.’ I want to find a Doctor that HAS Fibromyalgia and see what they say!!

Do you think if we have addictive personalities we will misuse codeine and not Vicodin? I KNOW I don’t have an addictive personality, believe me I would have had plenty of opportunities to have one but it’s just not something I would do, want to do or will ever do. Shouldn’t doctors be able to differentiate patients from junkies?

Think about the Hippocratic (Hypocritical?) Oath that says: “First, Do No Harm.” You are causing harm refusing to treat illnesses that are incredibly painful. How about a different warning label? USE ONLY WHEN IN DIRE PAIN. That works! I don’t know anyone personally who would abuse it but I am sure there is a percentage of people who would abuse anything. Don’t punish us, for them. I certainly wouldn’t want to take anything every day if I didn’t need it. My doctor had me on two different medications to prevent pain that didn’t work and I ASKED if I could stop them, he hesitated and I then convinced him and stopped. I WANTED to use as little medication as possible. Frustrating.

In terms of exercise I walk slowly to try to get exercise and if I had the extra thousands of dollars I would probably buy a membership for a gym that has an indoor pool so I could swim but that’s money a lot of us don’t have lying around. My special diet? I usually eat healthy meals, chicken,veggies, salad, pasta, red meat a couple of times every month or two. However, my special chronic pain diet, for comfort since there is no pain relief usually involves Cadbury Creme Eggs, Yodels and Egg Salad Sandwiches. Sometimes comfort, even though it is not a pain reliever, might just make you feel a little bit better emotionally since no one is trying to help us physically.

Powered by Plinky

We Didn’t Ask For This (FIBROMYALGIA)

27/365: fractured reality/grace under pain

As a Fibromyalgia patient I need to explain a few things that the general public doesn’t understand. Actually, there are things that WE don’t understand but we are clear on one thing. This is NOT in our heads. Whatever crack pot thought that one up was clearly not a pain sufferer. We didn’t ask for this disease that makes us  live in a state of chronic pain.  Believe me, no person would want this every single day of their lives, no person would choose this.  We live our lives on the edge of our seats for two reasons: 1) because sitting one place for more than three minutes will hurt and 2) we can’t make plans ahead of time because we don’t know how we will feel on any given day.  People ask me to do things and I always use the same line: “Let me see how I feel.” Of course I have said it over and over again but people who are not patients tend to forget.

Which reminds me: forgetting things, we start to speak and stop, we go upstairs to get something and then not remember what we are looking for.  No, we are not feeble-minded, nor are we crazy, old, senile or menopausal. (Ok, we could be a mixture of things) There is something called FIBRO FOG which makes us forget, makes us as cloudy as fog rolling in to San Francisco. It is not our fault. Do you think I like looking like an absolute fool? Don’t you think it stings when my children say “I just told you that”or “Mom, I’ve told you that story 100 times.” I’m sure you did but “Fibro-Haze” got to me once again. I honestly don’t remember the last time I had a totally lucid conversation. I seem to drift half-way through. My husband recommended that I take stimulants, the pills given to people with ADHD. Thanks, but I’m on a lot of medications (that don’t help) as it is. Please don’t play doctor, you can’t imagine how many people do that to us. We know you mean well, it just doesn’t help.

If patients, had wanted this stubborn illness our homes would be filled with Fibro-Friendly items. We would all have an in-house masseuse. The refrigerator would be filled with our favorite soft foods,  soup, pasta, cheesecake with an apricot glaze, soft and chewy brownies that won’t activate our TMJ. We would all have extra-king size beds so we don’t have to bump into our partners in the middle of the night. Hair stylists would fluff out our thinning hair to make us feel better about ourselves. Our bedrooms would be equipped with huge 3D, High Definition television sets, the exact height that is comfortable for us so we don’t strain our already tense and knotted necks and shoulders. All houses would come with nurses and aides, to drive us, do the laundry, cook dinner and attend to our every need.  Our medicine cabinets would be filled with newly invented “Miracle-Meds”, an innovative medication that actually helps and relieves all of the pain. Not cocktails of useless pills that don’t do anything except make our stomachs, and IBS,  feel all sorts of crazy weird.

Chronic pain, with no relief is horrible. Please don’t talk to us like we are  psychologically challenged. There is nothing wrong with us except that we hurt. We hurt constantly with no relief. We have pain that is relentless, pain that is constant, pain that we have no choice but to accept it in our daily lives. We also don’t want your sympathy, but we would love your understanding.

The Zoo Keeper

I plunk my chubby body down into an outdoor green steel chair that is covered with grime. It doesn’t matter that I have lost 20 lbs, I think of myself as chubby, probably always will. I see the portable telephone out of the corner of my eye, my eyeglasses, a crumpled Living Simple magazine bent over.  I am trying to sit in the sun for a few moments, not because I want to but because people tell me I should. I finally got dressed out of my night-time Tee shirt into an old blue shirt and black track pants. I had even put on sneakers as if I was really going to walk somewhere but I knew it was all a mind game.

My dog came out with me, she didn’t want to play either, and she sat by my side as I ran my nails through her thick black, white and tan fur. She knows better than anyone that I really don’t want visitors, don’t need visitors, when I am not feeling well. With the exception of my dog, who stays comfortably at my side, I really think I prefer to be in the zoo without people looking at me, or making small-talk or asking me how I am. I am not well, but it doesn’t mean I want people to come over and wave excitedly like they do to the seals, I am not asking people to throw crackers at me. Basically, if I had a choice, I would burrow under the covers, accompanied by only the light of day and nothing more.

I would like to wait out whatever illness or bruise or breathing problem I have until it is better and then I will go embrace the public; then I will drive the car and be social and say “hello” pleasantly to people I generally don’t care about; but not now. Now I am raw, raw honey and I want to close my eyes and think of nothing, feel nothing, say nothing. I would like to rejoin reality at my pace, in my time; when that is, is anyone’s guess but it is not now, the time has not arrived yet. I hope to know when it does arrive but maybe I won’t.

I will know when I want to share a skinny vanilla latte with my friend Sarah, I will know when I want to see my sister to share a tuna-salad sandwich at the Thornwood Diner. Now, what I want to do is sleep, and have the time go by so that the day is shorter and that when I try to sleep on my back, with a white rubbery binder around my ribs, that I will sleep through to the morning. Then, again, I will try to get out of my shell and start the day the same way until the days get better, feel better and not a second before.