About Me

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Los Angeles, California
I am 47 and thriving in Southern California. One day at a time.
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Monday, June 27, 2011

the good, the bad, and the urinary...

like myself, the owl by nature is nocturnal...

"the owl awakens its higher self at night. it comes to those who are more scorpionic (ca c'est moi). honored as keeper of the spirits who had passed from one plane to another...owls represent wisdom and knowledge, because their nocturnal vigilance is associated with that of the studious scholar or wise elder...insightful, wise, protective, mystical...symbolism of the owl is deep and intense...in some cultures, their symbolism revolves around guardianship of the underworld and protection of the dead...

[take that, you morning people...]

who knew i had a muse in a bulging-eyed, feathery, avian compatriot?

is it wrong to be jealous of a bird? they prey, they swoop, they eat, they poop, they sleep, they prey...well, you get the idea...

that is their identity.

but for several weeks now, i have been struggling to diagnose my new identity.

["good day, sunshine..."]

flutter, flutter, rub, rub...dig mr. sandman's gift from the corner of eyes, roll over onto throbbing incision and squint obstructively upon bedside's florescent numbers..."12:11 pm...oh, not bad"...wait. rub, rub, rub..."2:11 pm".

[insert: george carlin's forbidden 7...]

feel heart blisteringly plunge more swiftly than the pocketed stones that careened virginia woolf downstream to her demise...

granted, i am the anthropomorphic version of the owl...for better or for worse...my racing brain, palpitating heart and a body brimming full of drugs galvanize this soul during the oddest hours. i circle the coveted ring of REM for hours, until the first rays of sunlight shyly peek their beams of hope above the mountain tops...


the irony behind my recent search, has been the loathing i felt for "the biz's" necessity to do the same. i always held in lowest regard, it's incessant need to pigeonhole your look, your voice, your body...as if these superficial factors determined your authentic capabilities/talent. assigning an identity was their lazy way to eliminate.

so why am i so obsessed with identifying mine?

for so many years, societal identification pegged me as a chronically ill wannabe. an addict, on disability and tripping to cedars more frequently than i pop pills...
yet curiously, i am not a person who embraces society's opinions. the law? sure. but the chronological, "proper" route we are required to abide by...thank you, but no...

but when the only identity you comprehend is lying sweltered, curled up in the back of a stuffy, filthy station wagon; desperately waiting for a number that will delay yet another test...yeah, you crave an altered state...transformation...feverishly squeezing through alice's miniature door away from limbo...

but for now, i am simply stripped. stripped barren of the healthy life i cherished for so long and jammed unyielding between illness and redemption...

[so, analyse this...]

strip your life of every role you hold dear. being a parent, a friend, slogging away at a challenging career, volunteering (oddly, picking up after 100 + hounds, is frowned upon for the immunosuppressed) and physically thriving down to your core.

in the alternative, insert frequent hospital trips, pharmacy runs, swallowing medications 4 times a day, sleeping 12 hours a night, engaging more frequently with your doctors, nurses, transplant co-coordinators and technicians' lives, more than your own, beloved friends.

this is not about being positive or negative. i am positive. i don't believe i would have survived 30 years of kicks, punts and punches to my kidneys, had i not embodied that spirit. as my toronto nephrologist so bluntly articulated, renal failure is a life long issue. but there is an enormous difference between reality and cynicism.

and reality is where i groove.

a couple of weeks ago, as i sat in the transplant clinic waiting room, k and and i engaged in one heartbreaking conversation. post-transplant, this elderly dame had been released for a mere 4 days, before rejection set in and tossed her back into the hospital for over 3 weeks.

i feel annoyance that society's simplistic impression is "insert kidney, do not collect $200 and do not pass go"...for this is no a game. and as physicians hold brilliance within the palms of their hands, i remain the guinea pig who must humbly and vulnerably nibble away for my survival. i am the rodent who must scurry home and run endless, mindless circles within my caged wheel, 24/7, while physicians escape their patients, their stories and the hospital with all it's chaos and confusion...

yes, rejection has the potential to be controlled. and for now, that remains my entire identity. dreaming and hoping and wishing and praying...but whether it's the spectacularly agonizing wait at home, or the trapped existence upon a hospital bed; no sleep, no privacy, no peace; you are always aware that you are part of some bizarre alien experiment...

["tell me why i don't like mondays?"]

and so i conjure up my recently departed bedstemor...whose infallible attitude continues to inspire me. she coined the phrase "just do it", long before nike patented it.

do you know that song?

the one that you deliberately play in order to indulge your sadness during those 3 am moments. the ones that propel your emotional snowball as it hurtles down your mountain of sentimentality...

well, i played that song today. over and over and over..."the other side of the world" (k.t. tunstall)...and i cried, and missed her and eventually became inspired...

inspired to stay realistic. stay firmly cemented in positivity. and hold her example close to my heart.

perhaps there is an end in sight. but sometimes i wonder if the means to this "end" is worth the struggle.

but, i know bedstemor would have thought so. and that's good enough for me.

[monday. a new week. a new test. and renewed hope that my creatinine will fall faster than the tears i shed.]

i wonder if owls like mondays?

1 comment:

  1. xoxo. So many people love you and you are still more than your illness, my darling.