Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Pity me and I'll force joy down your throat ;)

Here's a little update. I'm sitting on my couch in quite a bit of pain. Forced Kristin into bed around 10 o'clock. (By forced, of course, I mean coaxed and convinced. There's really no "forcing" Kristin to do anything she doesn't want to do.) There is no doubt in my mind that the pain I have is from cancer returning in my colon. I'm terrified.

Almost went to the ER tonight. The drugs I'm on have eased the pain back a little. Enough that I can breath again... and type apparently. Called the WVCI and talked to a doctor on call. ( [ rant ] I understand that I'm calling after 9pm and that you might be sleeping or trying to relax. I understand that some days any call is annoying. But that's when your "bed-side manner" is supposed to kick in. When I'm writhing in pain and trying to decide between the ER and a night of sleepless pain, I don't need that annoyed tone on the phone. Just tell me what you want me to do, pretend and sound like you care, and then get off the phone. For the record, I've had nothing but good experiences with this doctor before and he was probably just having an off night. We all have off nights. It just sucked. I feel like I'm bugging people when I call anyway. If I was in therapy, and I probably should be, it would have set me back weeks. Also for the record, the doctor on-call was not my doctor. Andrew Monticelli is an amazing man and physician and is part of the reason I'm still alive. [ / rant ] ) This seemed the better option, as I have an unusually scheduled appointment with my doctor tomorrow wherein I plan to discuss raising my Marinol dose and what his plans are for my treatment beginning this Friday as we try to buy Kristin and I a little more time.

The big scare for me, the terrifying thing, is that it may become necessary to do another surgery on my colon. At my weight the original surgery was incredibly dangerous. The surgeon seemed surprised it came off so well. Even bigger on my heart tonight is that the recuperation from this surgery last year took me over two months. If I really do have three months to live, I'd hate to spend it all in a hospital bed and the old green chair in our living room. I'm not sure how I would face that. There would be anger. But I'm sure God would provide me the strength I need. I'm not Job or anything. I'm more like Job's second cousin, twice removed.

I'm still farming the amazing world we live in where joy is a free, organic, fruit hanging low from a tree we all own. I still believe that seeking joy should be a priority in our lives. It remains a priority in mine. Today I twittered a half hearted "threat", "Choose joy... or have joy thrust upon you!"** I mean it. I have a friend right now who is struggling with emotional pain and fighting with himself. I can see it. I can't fix it. He has his "happy" moments but his day, week, life can become horrible for him in moments. I don't know what else to say to him. I can't tell anyone this big secret of how to choose your reaction to life. One day I just decided that it was time to take responsibility for those choices. But I had the privilege of growing up with that as a lesson I learned from my Grandfather, Grandmother, Mom and especially my Dad. It's a lesson I had learned through osmosis... and those are harder to forget. I wish I could give that to everyone. (You don't need to know his name. I wouldn't even consider telling it to you. But you can pray for him, or send him "good thoughts"*, just the same without the name.)

“I pitied him in his blindness 
But can I boast, 'I see?' 
Perhaps there walks a spirit Close by, 
who pities me”- Harry Kemp

I posted something on Facebook regarding this and mentioned something about not wanting any pity comments. I'm actually in a pretty good mood. Pain has become a part of life and if I let it stop me when I have any power to move past it or through it... I'd never get going again. But pity has become an issue lately as I've added a lot of friends on Facebook. As the "urn" story got out I started receiving tons of "friend requests" from people I didn't really know. At first I responded as I always have, with an email asking them to remind me of how I knew them, apologizing for needing my memory jarred and explaining that with the limited time I had I wasn't really going to be able to develop a lot of new relationships. Then things got overwhelming, I gave up, and just started "accepting" my new "friends". The only real problem is that a few of my "new friends" don't know me as well as they think and react to any hint of pain or sadness in my posts with what I perceive to be pity. I don't like pity. I don't mind concern, mentioning that I'm in your thoughts or prayers, or a well placed sarcastic comment. Pity just annoys me. So I'm learning to forgive all these well meaning, loving, people I don't really know and doing everything I can to not react with sarcasm and or delete my original comment.

I'm rambling a little. It's "probably" the drugs. Thanks for listening. In more fun news... the trip is coming together, provided it can still happen. Reserved a car-rental we can't afford today! I'm excited. My creditors are not. And I don't really blame them. (Donation button is on the right hand side if you're looking. If you're not... there's other stuff there. Like: All About Me which is also available, and cheaper I think, on iTunes.)

*As a Christian who prays, and I'm NOT making fun of you who do not, I don't really understand what it means to "send good thoughts". I mention such things because I know the concept is very important to many people and I don't want anyone to feel left out. I also readily admit that I don't know much and understand even less... so... while I have solid faith in prayer and that God hears all prayers... for all I know "good thoughts" do wonders and I'm sure God hears those "good words" and they might have the same, or better, effect on situations. I'm not God. If I was, I wouldn't have cancer and the tag team of Gold Dust  & Cactus Jack (I would market them as "Prickly Gold") would be headlining most professional wrestling Pay-Per-Views.

** The best response to this tweet about having joy "thrust upon you" was from a friend, @Ooh_LaLa, who said, "Ewww...yer getting your joy all over the internet!"... made me laugh out loud. Which actually hurt me at the time, but it was worth it.


Not quite the Bradys said...

Not pity. Just weak attempts at empathy. Since I haven't walked a mile in your awesome bowling shoes I can't really empathize, but I have been very, very sick and looked death in the face before. It kind of sucks. While pity is sort of crappy- it puts the one who feels it above you in a way, empathy is taught by the Savior (Matt. 25:35-40). Be patient with those who have a hard time knowing the difference. There is a pretty fine line between them sometimes. You are in my prayers. :)

~Amy Langworthy

aaron jamison said...

Of course I'm patient. Everything in life these days is taken with several grains, sometimes pounds, of salt. ;)

Thanks for reading, commenting and reminding me. :)