Sunday, April 22, 2018

The Never Endings

A good writer who’ll never be read.

A good playwright who’ll never be seen.

A good man who’ll never be loved.

Sometimes sorrows never end.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Sick Of It

So, I just took a shower. I wrapped my whittled foot in a trash sack and duct taped it closed. Because of my parents, I have guard rails in my bathroom. So, I climbed into the shower and climbed out without assistance. I got out of the shower, dried myself, and sat on my bed and wept. Yeah, I'm not a man who cries. I cried because I was physically weak. I didn't cry tears of sorrow; I cried tears of exhaustion. I’ve always thought tears were weak. Well, I was wrong. So, first lesson.

I felt too exhausted to dress so I sprawled across my bed and grabbed my phone. I played Words With Friends with my friend. And then I looked at my apps. On this exact date - 3 years ago before I got sick - I bicycled over 35 miles. Today I break into a thick gooey sweat just walking to a chair. I lost my temper and deleted the bicycle app.

After I controlled myself, I thought about illness. We're all going to get ill. Unless your death is violent or accidental - you're going to get sick. So, in the smallest of ways, (and I emphasize smallest) I see the benefit, no wait, lesson of my illness. It's taught me to be a better man to the elderly. I'm more compassionate. I'm more empathetic. 

Illness is a great math lesson. Get sick and add up your accomplishments and tally your failures and subtract the useless worries that no longer matter a flea fuck. 

I've learned the courage of the ill. It takes stones of steel to endure each day.

I feel sicker this week than I ever have in my life. My cardiologist is titrating my meds - and by Christ (not in vain. I mean it) I hope he gets it right soon. I don't know how the ill get out of bed each day. I don't even understand the physical achievement of it. 

I watch my sister Carol tend for us and I see the heroic achievement of those who are caregivers.

Today was the first time I couldn't take my Mother to her doctor's appt. It broke my heart. I thought God and I had this agreement. Obviously, He didn't.

But maybe our agreement is He teaches me; I learn and become a better man. Am I better man? Yeah, no I don't think so. So maybe I'm the one breaking our agreement. But today I feel useless. Without purpose.

I’m sick of being sick; I’m sick of me.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

His Last Remains

He lined the items on the table beside him: pads, gauze, bromine, Q-Tips. He laid the white towel - bleachable and sterile - beside him as his shroud. He inhaled and blew the anticipation from his quaking lungs. Slowly he unwrapped the ace bandage. He untwined the gauze strip. He untucked the sterile separators that padded his two tiny toes at its end. Finally he pulled the pads off the scars and saw the carcass. Tears trembled down his cheeks and mucus bathed his upper lip. He couldn’t silence his sorrow. Sadness mingled with despair and he stacattoed shallow throaty wails. He removed his hands from his face and pedestaled himself with his palms by his sides. When his eyes were as dry as the skin surrounding his incision, he sat upright and sterilized his hands with alcohol.  He dabbed bromide in each crevice, wrapped his foot tight, tossed the bloodied bandages into the trash, stood erect, and walked out of the room.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The Finite of The Infinite

You know what I love? I love when I meet someone and all of a sudden he/she matters to me. He's/she's in my life. Within it. I love that. 

A secret I’ve learned at 55: they can leave just as quickly. 

See I believe love is often finite. 

I love. 
Someone makes a choice I find intolerable.
I unlove. 

But in those moments of synchronicity, it’s still love.  It’s still communion.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Fake Knews & Social Sins

A new laptop.  I'm just getting used to it. I like it. Okay. So.

Maybe it's because I'm 55. Or maybe it's my heart. Or maybe it's just because my soul is still Catholic. But I examine my conscience each day. Well, I don't know if that's true. I do it with each verb I conjugate. That isn't new. My yardstick is.

I want to become a better man.

Incidents / Reflections

* I'm using a walker. When I'm able to graduate to a cast, I will. But for now I'm hunched over the horizontal bar and alternating between a hop and a slide. I often lift the area rug or hit the furniture that bumpers my path. I remember when my father first slid from a cane to a walker. I felt irritated when he disrupted the rugs. I felt angry when he collided with the chairs. I didn't see the degree of difficulty. I'm ashamed I wasn't more patient. I'm contrite I became an obstacle. Each slide of mine is filled with remorse. You can't go back with a walker; fortunately you can move forward.

* Last year I stared at the ceiling in a hospital room. I had been hospitalized because of the complications of congestive heart failure and I awaited an ablation in the morning. I received a text from a woman I know. Oh you know her type. She wanted to use my social connections to make new social contacts. She asked me if my friend needed her to help him set up for his party. Now catch that. I was in a hospital and she wanted to know if I could arrange for her to help him. Seriously. Now I've never been that masturbatory but I have neglected a need to participate in a joy. I was too thunderstruck to be hurt or angry. But I wasn't too ill to be aware. I considered her while I was hospitalized last week. She was a great example. I'm a better man because I make great efforts to avoid the occasion of her sin. She wanted me to contact him from my hospital bed to see if she could help him. Really.

* I've realized that I often seek a sympathetic ear - and then resent the intrusion of advice. Now recently I've considered this. If I tell you I have a problem, then I make it your business too. For instance: if I tell you peanuts make me ill and lament their potential loss in my diet yet continue to eat them, you have the right to question why I'm snacking on them regardless of the consequences. It's morally wrong to ask for empathy when I have no intention of ending my behavior. It's my choice to continue the chew and not your responsibility to silently clean up the vomit.

* In the last year two people - who rarely and barely know me - have started arguments with me about judgments they've made about my behavior or motivation. "Well the reason you do that ..." or "No that's not what you're like ..."  I found myself justifying my motivation to people who had no real knowledge of my impetuses or inclinations. I actually said the sentence, "you don't get a vote." I've considered this at length. We don't actually know why anyone chooses to behave in the manner he chooses. We don't really know the situations people experience or the impulses that propel people through decisions. I think we need to realize that in most situations - we don't have a vote.  My cardinal rules: 1. if it isn't necessary - shut up. 2. Unless you can point to a diploma, you're not an expert. Here's a truth: everyone participates in fake knews. We don't know everything. Or hell, most things. I'll give us some things. And that's something but not everything.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Keeping Limber

It didn’t bother me until it was time to leave. I wrapped my head around the loss of a big toe. Just a toe. A toe. The podiatry department dropped a surgical shoe off while I slept. It was time to go home.  And I picked up the plastic bag and slid the surgical shoe out and I saw the size: men’s large. A size smaller. I lost a shoe size.

I remembered. Years ago I waited as the podiatric nurse located a surgical shoe that would fit my foot. An XL surgical shoe is an oddity. But she found one. 

I lost a size; I gained shame.

Okay.

Enough of that.

A new goal: keep the leg. It was a problematic toe. Each step risked the leg. 

So. First step: a whole food plant based diet. The dietician said I need protein to heal the foot. When it’s healed, I begin. I’ll blog it. 

A leg. I want the leg. 

Some times I can be so goddamned stupid. I spent the last 16 months worried about a heart and I’d completely forgotten my foot. Each morning for 17 months I cleaned the ulcer, slathered it with antibiotic ointment, and wrapped it. But I did it without a thought. I cared for it; I didn’t care about it. 

It’s time to be more careful. I have no clever ending. I want the leg. That’s the pot at the end of this monochromatic rainbow.  

I want the leg.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Forked: The Halved Not

I’m typing on a iPhone. So no edit and format is going to suck.

Lamentations is a great word but rather antiquated. And frankly I think of plastically protected memories and that’s apt. And yes I know the difference of the words. Laminating. I’m not stupid.  But they are similar. Both are about distance. So. Lamenting / laminating. Things that were, could’ve. It all doesn’t matter. It’s all isn’t. All removed.

I’m sitting in a hospital room. Feet perched. Awaiting surgery. So tomorrow it’s about the half.  Tomorrow I lose the piece of my foot that enabled my foot to look like a foot and not a block. So tonight is about failure. I didn’t save it. Whether I could have saved it or not is not debatable. I could not. But how long I could have kept is, well ... let’s go with longer.  I could have kept it longer.  I didn’t. But. I’m not lamenting that.

I thought today about nouns. We noun everything. We make everything a was/is. There’s no evolution in a noun. No becoming in a noun. We noun everything. Yeah, I used noun as a verb. But that’s my plan. From this now and on: verbs. Change. Improve. Impress. Express. Evolution.  

So up first: heal.  4 weeks to heal the foot. I’m going to foot the foot. It’s a new foundation. More solid. More stable. 

I met an amazing physician over my stay at Regions. She redescribed my heart to me. So. New eyes.  A revision. A review.  

Secondly, I’m going to redesign my body. A new machine that puts my heart and soul into motion.  I’m going to try A plant based diet. I’ll watch the documentary Forks Over Knives on Netflix when I have WiFi strong enough to avoid the spinning cog.  

I died in my fall of 2016. I buried my hopes and happy and my confidence and my coulds and I laminated them in this carnal casket. I’ve allowed my body and soul to rot. 

Today is Easter Sunday. Today I resurrect my cans and wills.  

Apri 1, 2018: And now I rise. 
Amen