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Saturday, January 25, 2020

Have I Mentioned This Already?

I TOTALLY hate January AND February. They are my least fave two months by a loooooooooong bloody shot -- by scads of light years, in fact. It's not just the weather, it's also January's anniversaries -- The Amazing Bob's birthday AND the anniversary of our hilarious nuptials.
I thought I was getting a nice pass this year. Ya know, brain slice-age (ON TAB's Bday!) recovery would allow me to just stay indoors and shit? Nope! I still need to get outside from time to time, especially if I want to actually recover...and shit. That's, pretty much, my BIG goal, my target. Ya know?

My cottage is...well...one very small step up from tiny-homeness which I LIKE. Less to clean, less to clutter my life...just LESS. Me likey -- a LOT. But, in order to get sufficient walkies in, I GOTTA go outside...in January. I'm less than keen on this just FYI.

Yesterday was further annoying in that I, inadvertently of course, drowned my laptop in coffee. Yes, SPAZ CITY! So, Ten and I went to the Apple Store down at the Derby Street Shops versus the HUGE South Shore Mall figuring I'd have less walking to accomplish and they could repair (don't all Apples have repair dudes and dudettes?) No and no.
I NEED that damn thing for work, which I'd already started back at, general communications and blogging. Undoubtedly I'll need to purchase a new baby (which, at the mo, is slightly more than painful) and hope to Bast that my main employers' IT dude is able to retrieve my myriad files. 

So, I'm in the early days yet of major league brain surgery recovery, it's fucking late January AND my computer's died (my very own fault but STILL!). This all makes me cranky -- I'm guessing you'd already figured that out though.

So, amongst other things, until I get squared away with a new laptop, I'll be blogging by phone or iPad -- neither of which allows full, awesome layout options. That has this simple layout arTISTE bummed to the max (or close to it). MORE FYI and shit.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Cabin Fever

At the same time that I've been a weak-ass kitten, I've had some vicious cabin fever.

Yesterday, Ten and I drove down to the pot shop in Fall River. Afterward we stopped at Sparkle Boys' for lunch where I used the bog ALL BY MYSELF! YES, this is a big fucking deal and it exhausted die Scheiße clean outta me.

Today I've two different therapists (AKA Taskmasters – very nice BUT STILL!) coming in. One is a speech therapist (who I don't believe I need any longer) and the other is a regular old PT. After, Ten and I will make a run up to the Thomas Crane Library to pick up a coupla books I sent off for pre-surgery.
 
Today, by the by, I'm precisely two weeks past my big surgery day and it's one week since I came home after my oh-so-thrilling 2AM ambulance ride in and overnight 1/2 stay. I'm happy to say that I was out cold for much of that fun little experience. Less scary that way...ya know?!

I've also begun working again. That's something I can do whilst parked in my big beautiful comfy chair so I'm not rilly taxed (though I do have to concentrate to a greater extent AND not put anything further on my plate – baby steps and shit).

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Roses are red

Violets are blue
My mother could be obnoxious
And so can I

I woke at 3AM from a dream that she called me – on the phone and everything. Yes, she’s dead these past eight years and was deaf for the last ten+ years of her life. Why’d she call? To tell me that she was leaving Daddy. Why? She’d decided that he was just TOO irretrievably obnoxious. He could be. Me too. Everyone’s gotta have a talent – ya know?

WHY am I having this dream? Prolly because I feel like I’m less than wonderful lately, that I’m NOT carrying my prodigious weight OR being AT ALL entertaining. Jen and Ten are doing simply EVERYTHING for me – for which I’m blindingly grateful but I feel guilt too. Of course I do – I was raised Catholic. Guilt is as much part of my OS as taking a regular breath...fer Bast’s sake.

The good news – I’m a little stronger, able to do a bit more each day. Yesterday I actually scrubbed the toilet. Yes. This DID in fact exhaust me but I simply had to do it.

I’m improving but at a frustratingly glacial pace. I MUST remember that the BRAIN surgery I just had was a real motherfucker. The BIG scar encircles my entire tête.

OF COURSE I'M A WEAK-ASS KITTEN!!!

Tomorrow it’ll be one week since I got home from the hospital the second time. Shouldn't I be ALL better – able to leap small buildings in a single bound, hitting the gym daily AND painting?

Wut? No? I need to give myself more time? How cruelly dull.

Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.
~ A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Even a snail will eventually reach its destination.
~ Gail Tsukiyama, The Street of a Thousand Blossoms

And I will reach mine – strength. 

And sure enough, even waiting will end...if you can just wait long enough.
~ William Faulkner


***SIGH*** 

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Disgust

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!
You understand fully that I am utterly disgusted by my fellow Republi/Fascist voting Amurikans, right? Right? I can well imagine that you are too.

The current stratospheric cruelty and unmitigated idiocy began, perhaps, when Fat Boy Newt made his Contract On America.
...few figures in modern history have done more than Gingrich to lay the groundwork for Trump’s rise. During his two decades in Congress, he pioneered a style of partisan combat—replete with name-calling, conspiracy theories, and strategic obstructionism—that poisoned America’s political culture and plunged Washington into permanent dysfunction. Gingrich’s career can perhaps be best understood as a grand exercise in devolution—an effort to strip American politics of the civilizing traits it had developed over time and return it to its most primal essence. (source)
Make no mistake, the man is radically delusional and hellbent on destroying civilization. There still are, very sadly, people who think he's got a brain.

Psychology Today lists five traits of Trump supporters to help us understand how the fuck we got to this purely wretched place:
1.     Authoritarian Personality Syndrome
Authoritarianism refers to the advocacy or enforcement of strict obedience to authority at the expense of personal freedom, and is commonly associated with a lack of concern for the opinions or needs of others. Authoritarian personality syndrome—a well-studied and globally-prevalent condition—is a state of mind that is characterized by belief in total and complete obedience to one’s authority. Those with the syndrome often display aggression toward outgroup members, submissiveness to authority, resistance to new experiences, and a rigid hierarchical view of society. The syndrome is often triggered by fear, making it easy for leaders who exaggerate threat or fear monger to gain their allegiance.
2.     Social dominance orientation
Social dominance orientation (SDO)—which is distinct but related to authoritarian personality syndrome—refers to people who have a preference for the societal hierarchy of groups, specifically with a structure in which the high-status groups have dominance over the low-status ones. Those with SDO are typically dominant, tough-minded, and driven by self-interest.
3.     Prejudice
It would be grossly unfair and inaccurate to say that every one of Trump’s supporters have prejudice against ethnic and religious minorities, but it would be equally inaccurate to say that many do not. It is a well-known fact that the Republican party, going at least as far back to Richard Nixon’s “southern strategy,” used strategies that appealed to bigotry, such as lacing speeches with “dog whistles”—code words that signaled prejudice toward minorities that were designed to be heard by racists but no one else.
4.     Intergroup contact
Intergroup contact refers to contact with members of groups that are outside one’s own, which has been experimentally shown to reduce prejudice. As such, it’s important to note that there is growing evidence that Trump’s white supporters have experienced significantly less contact with minorities than other Americans. For example, a 2016 study found that “…the racial and ethnic isolation of Whites at the zip-code level is one of the strongest predictors of Trump support.” This correlation persisted while controlling for dozens of other variables. In agreement with this finding, the same researchers found that support for Trump increased with the voters’ physical distance from the Mexican border.
5.     Relative deprivation
Relative deprivation refers to the experience of being deprived of something to which one believes they are entitled. It is the discontent felt when one compares their position in life to others who they feel are equal or inferior but have unfairly had more success than them. (source)
AND they're just flat out nasty and mentally ill. 

Last night I saw, on ShoutyFace, that a BernieBros friend of mine has a Donald the Dodo voting friend. I was kinda stunned but realize, this morning, that it makes sense. What both have/had in common was an irrational hatred of and total incomprehension of Clinton combined with an inability to see how the US would descend into Hell under the Orange Manatee. Possibly there's an unhealthy dose of misogyny in the mix on their parts too.

If you think Mrs. Putin, Don the Con, the Traitor in the WH is dangerous (he is) and bad for America (he is in MEGA spades) vote Blue no matter who in November.

Are you registered to vote? CHECK! If you've been thrown off the roles RE-REGISTER!

Monday, January 20, 2020

Recovery

Ohara Koson 小原古邨
Today is my fourth morning waking at home versus MGH since the ER episode. Yea me!

I believe I'm healing – just MEGA slowly. I've yet to walk down to the water. Maybe today (Ten just vetoed the idea :-(. It'll be up close to 30º at some point and I NEED to challenge myself!

Ten, Jen, Coco and Oni are taking brill care of me. Of course they are! I'm mega lucky.

I need to remember that the tumor, the meningioma that Barker took out was HUGE – a real motherfucker and it had gained that size in the space of six months, effecting me terribly. I'd lost the ability to write legiblly – print OR script. I had headaches ALL the damn time (no more...thank Bast!). My crap balance was even more crappy.

Now, I've begun to heal. This is gonna take time and I'm an impatient motherfucker. I thought this'd be simple and fast because it's just a meninioma, not an acoustic neuroma. Nope – shit's not that simple. Bummer!
As my sufferings mounted I soon realized that there were two ways in which I could respond to my situation -- either to react with bitterness or seek to transform the suffering into a creative force. I decided to follow the latter course.
~ Martin Luther King Jr.
 you look at me and cry
everything hurts
i hold you and whisper
but everything can heal
~ Rupi Kaur, Milk and Honey 


Sunday, January 19, 2020

Struggle and Weakness

This recovery is gonna take time...a LOT of it. I'm feeling impatient and frustrated to say the least.

Of course.

How can any man be weak who dares to be at all?
~ Henry David Thoreau

I dare but will be, sadly, post-surgically weak for for a while yet.

Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.
~ Khalil Gibran
 
Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.
~ Lao Tzu

I have strength to get through this courage too.

It was written I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice.
~ Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness 

Nf2 is NOT my selected nightmare but it's the one I've been given. I'll deal.

There is no thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives.
~ Audre Lorde

O snail
Climb Mount Fuji
But slowly, slowly!

~ Kobayashi Issa

This recovery is def not moving swiftly and I am feeling mega impatient and frustrated to say the least. Again...OF COURSE!

No person, trying to take responsibility for her or his identity, should have to be so alone. There must be those among whom we can sit down and weep, and still be counted as warriors.
~ Adrienne Rich, Sources 

I am not alone.

Damn it, how will I ever get out of this labyrinth?
~ Simon Bolivar

One step at a time – that’s how.

Only when we face the impossible, and experience the unbearable, do we find out who we truly are.
~ Vironika Tugaleva

Life might prove difficult—was evidently going to; but meanwhile they had each other, and that was everything.
~ Henry James, The Wings of the Dove 
 
I have Ten, Jen, Coco and Oni here at home – thank Bast!

come celebrate
with me that everyday
something has tried to kill me
and has failed.

~ Lucille Clifton

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Another

Do one thing every day that scares you.
 
I got out of bed this morning. That counts.
 
So, I made it through another night here at home versus MGH – yea me. I finally get to wash my hair today, one week and one day post-surgery too. Damn, I feel nasty.

I thought recovery from this surgery would be easy – just mebbe some afternoon naps. Nope.

My speech is coming back finally. I'm remembering words again though my voice is now very weak.

I have accepted fear as part of life – specifically the fear of change... I have gone ahead despite the pounding in the heart that says: turn back....
  ~ Erica Jong  

You can't make decisions based on fear and the possibility of what might happen.
~ Michelle Obama 

I'll go for a walk down to the water today too.




Friday, January 17, 2020

Seizure

The first night I got home I couldn’t sleep. Because of being in the hospital? Mebbe though prolly not.

Anytime I tried to get out of bed at night in hospital, I set off radically loud alarms (that even I could hear with my sound awareness hearing aid in) and three nurses would come zooming in. They were always stunned at me being awake. I had to explain, “I’m a 61 year old woman – I don’t sleep through the night ”

The first night I came home I woke at 11 – getting back to sleep wasn’t happening. At two AM I figured I’d get up, go downstairs and read. I didn’t make it. Fell out of bed and and had some kind of a seizure – not unheard of after brain surgery, I guess.

Ten tried to get me back into bed but was unable and called Jen who called 911.

Apparently the Fire Department arrived first and put me back into bed. Which I don’t remember AT ALL. Then the EMTs came, put me in a wheelchair and transported me back to MGH via ambulance. I recall bits of this only. Just FYI, it’s no fun to lose time, no fun at all.

I saw the EMTs by our bed. It was weird – “who are these people and what are they doing in my bedroom?!” Yes, I saw their uniforms but it still baffled me. I was just going downstairs to read after all! I remember thinking that they both had nice, caring faces anyway.  I don’t recall going down the stairs via wheelchair at all.

Back at MGH, I spent much of the day on a gurney in a hallway of the ER before being moved to a room for overnight. A room with an awesome view!

Now I’m home, on anti-seizure meds and I got through this past night just fine. I could handle LESS excitement for a bit…ya know?!