fictional: (jenny)
Hi guys. Thanks to all the commenters on The Deep That We Shall Never See; I'm sorry I haven't responded yet, but I will. It's a problem of... not knowing what to say, and being... on a weird page, I guess. Anyway, I do sincerely appreciate it. And luckily [ profile] rm has been holding down the fort.

I've been taking a computer break. Saturday, I had to watch CoE again, with my darling [ profile] faris_nallaneen who had not yet seen it. And the lovely [ profile] magnetgirl came over too. spoilers )

Today I left the house. It was exciting, maybe the most gorgeous day of summer we've had yet, with not a cloud in the clear, blue sky. D. and I drove down Riverside Drive, and had dinfast at the Boat Basin Cafe -- a big juicy charred burger, with juicy red beefsteak tomato, and red onion and sharp green lettuce. It tasted unbelievably good. Then we walked through Riverside Park, stopping at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial to watch two guys practice the fencing scene from Hamlet. (Which I discovered just now through a little google-fu is for an actual, free production, to be performed on the North Patio there from the folks at Hudson Warehouse.)

And then we wandered over to Broadway, and D. bought me a copy of The Demon's Lexicon by [ profile] sarahtales.(I've just finished it, and I loved it, actually. If you like YA, and/or watch Supernatural, I strongly recommend you give it a go. Two brothers, demons, snark, magicians, betrayal, love in odd places and of odd kinds... it's quite lovely. I knew what the deal was before I was a quarter of the way in, but it's not really an "oh what a twist" book -- the fun is in watching it unfold to the characters, and that part is done really beautifully. It's the first entry in a trilogy, but absolutely satisfying as a standalone.)

After that, we sat in the sun for a while, reading, and snuggling, and laughing, with the breeze in our face. Ten minutes at a time went by that I didn't say something about Torchwood. (I think it was at least half an hour, but D. disagrees.)

Then we drove home.

Life, it goes on.

Also, sex is nice. Note to self: Do not get so wrapped up in bloody Torchwood that you forget this simple fact. *grin* I don't know how D. puts up with me. But I thank all the small gods for it. spoilers )

I have stuff to say about writing and stories and art. But that will wait for tomorrow later today. I really need to get to sleep.
fictional: (dr. who family)
OMG, so happy to be out of the hospital. AND on the internets again.

So first of all, my dad is now home! He is recovering from the brain surgery really well. Every day I see more improvement; he can now stand on one foot again (though still a little wobbly) and his cognition seems really close to normal, aside from a little forgetfulness. He has definitely lost some vision, but as he says, if that's the worst side effect, they can keep his peripheral vision as a present, gift wrapped.

We are now waiting to hear from the oncologist (regarding the mass they've found in the lung; we need to do some scans to see where else the cancer has metastasized to, and what stage it's at, etc. etc. and what the treatment should be). We also need see the neurosurgeon for follow up visits regarding the brain surgery. (Every time I type or think or say brain surgery, I keep expecting it to end in a joke/maxim/cliche of some kind. It's weird.)

We are also dealing with insurance related fuckery. [Yes, we have now been dumped into the toxic waters of the American Healthcare System; IT IS EXACTLY AS CRAPPY AS EVERYONE ALWAYS SAID. Try to avoid, if possible.] The social worker at the hospital, Victoria [called Vicky; when she says it, you can HEAR that it is spelled "Vicki" -- 'i' dotted with a little heart, natch], was remarkably unhelpful to me in negotiating the insurance stuff [she also proved deficient in many other respects, including consistently showing up after four hours when she kept telling me she'd be there in ten minutes.] However the lovely and amazing [ profile] faris_nallaneen who is a social worker of A Different Stripe Entirely spoke to her, and [because she is made of awesome] managed to uncover what she [Vicki] was refusing to tell us.

Vicki, you see, didn't want to explain things to me herself; she apparently thought it would be much better at this time for me to go to the social security office, and various other gov't offices to waste several days in hell, and get my answers there, in a much less clear fashion.

It turned out, as well, that she -- and many of the other hospital workers -- thought that we were a) indigent and desitute, b) could not speak English [even after speaking with all of us], and c) [because of these facts???] didn't need good quality care or assistance in navigating the system.
I mean, c'mon? Poor people? They don't deserve good care, right? It's just like natural selection, isn't it? [After I understood this, many previously unclear exchanges suddenly became comprehensible. For instance: Them: "You live in {area that is crappy/kinda ghetto/has govt. assisted housing projects}; Me: Um, no. My parents live in {neighborhood north of there; frankly kinda yuppified/gentrified}; Them: "Really? Are you sure?"; Me: "bzuh?!?!?!"1]

They assumed this apparently because we are a) BROWN and b) I spent most of my time at the hospital dressed with relative sloppiness [jeans & t-shirts etc.] This conclusion makes perfect sense because when you're spending nights in the hospital and your father has a BRAIN TUMOUR, you really feel the need to show up in heels and a suit. It's really comfortable when you're "sleeping" in a chair. Especially when there are catheters and blood gushing everywhere, and you're the one in the fucking barrel because you're an only child, and here you fucking are.


Let me not even start on the PASTORAL CARE people who would NOT leave us alone [her: "Hi... I speak... mostly English"; me (accentless for the record): "We speak English"; her: "Okay, I'll speeeeeak veeeereeeeyy sloooooowly. You're (looks me up and down) Catholic, right? You need (now loudly) A PRIEST? PRIEST? PADRE?"2] And the neuro ICU nurses, who I STILL want to stab in the brainpan, so they can experience their own care themselves and see how they fucking like it. Let's see how non-irritable they are. Charming!

HOWEVER it is not all terrible. My dad's neurosurgery team were AMAZING. Gorgeous hands, one and all, brilliant and thorough and quick and no nonsense, and all had good senses of humour. The resident at the first hospital, the one who rushed through the surgery, was so kind and so smart. (She was cute too, and Indian, and when I was dithering about going through with the surgery, she looked me straight in the eye and said, "if this were my father, this is what I would do." I believed her implicitly, and I'm so grateful.) The nurses in the regular neurology unit were so kind and competent and compassionate, that after the N-ICU people, I almost burst into tears at their awesomeness.

While I'm talking about awesomeness -- you guys! All your good wishes! I will reply to each and everyone, as soon as I have some more time; till then, please know I was touched to the heart by every single comment. Y'all rock so hard.

And as for the folks who've been going through this with me on this end, and helping so much, making food, helping me make decisions, doing driving and transport, communicating for me when I haven't been able to, taking time off from work, just chatting with me to keep my spirits up -- y'all know how much I love you.

Right now my dad's hovering over my shoulder, asking me if we can go on a walk to get him some potato chips. LOL. When I think of how he was on Thursday and Friday... it seems like a miracle. (An annoying, fiesty, curmudgeonly miracle who won't do what I tell him, and keeps trying to order me around and IS REALLY GETTING ON MY NERVES, but a miracle nevertheless.)

And now potato chips. Possibly also, (again as per his suggestion) a melon baller/ice cream scoop in case we need to scoop out any more defective head meat. Why hire other people to do what you can do yourself? Since we're going to be outside anyway.

1Yes. This really happened.
2This too. I kid you not.
fictional: (dr. who family)
Last night, I was sitting in a hospital room, gazing out at the Hudson River. The span of the George Washington bridge is framed perfectly in the window. Underneath there is a little lighthouse, still red, still working.

I had a book about it when I was small, about four or so, The Little Red Lighthouse and the Great Gray Bridge. I read it over and over and over.

(Something about the Little Red Lighthouse and its low self-esteem must have resonated? I don't know.)

One day, my father seized me by the hand, and told me we were going for a walk. He wouldn't tell me where. That was pretty par for the course; he was always sweeping me off on some crazy walk or lunatic adventure -- it would seem entirely aimless at first, and then suddenly we were at the forgotten sunken bridge, or up in the Cloisters, or seeing the Strauss House, and being told the tale of the Titanic for the very first time. Or climbing rocks, and having a good hunt for mollusk shell imprints -- found a few too -- while he described the slow march of glaciers through all this space, and what speed they'd be moving at, painting me a picture with words that lived, with colors and sounds. Or pretending we were birds for a week, so we could figure out how they lived. Or turtles. Or telling me he was secretly a (very well-preserved) Leonardo DaVinci -- that's when I learned about aerodynamics, and the relationship between sculpture and anatomy, and mirror writing. Or mulberry picking, every August. Or taking me to a church, and a synagogue, and a mosque -- my dad is a militant atheist -- and sitting inside them for a while, just to get the feel of these things that move people to such great extremes. It was a long time before I realised every game was a lesson too. It didn't matter; they all came alive. Anyway, he'd never tell me where we were going before we got there; I just had to wait and see. (Maximum drama, don't you know.)

Anyway, on the day in question, we'd walked all the way from our house on 215th st. to the foot of the G.W. Bridge, and then sure enough --- there was a enormous grey bridge, and underneath it, a little red lighthouse, which at the time, you could even still climb up to the top of.

"There it is," he said to me. "From your book."

I stood in awe.

Stories, I had just discovered for the first time, were real.

You know those chicken-soup type stories about the one teacher you have that inspires you, is special, makes a mark, inspires you, et cetera, et cetera? I never had one. Never felt the lack either.

That's because my father has been the best teacher I have ever had. Brilliant and crazy, and so much fun. He taught me physics and calculus, how to kick a soccer ball, to recite poetry and plays, how to arch a single eyebrow, matrices and probablity and logic and base numbers. When I had trouble with math as kid -- fractions and word problems -- he took me home, sat me down, handed me a notebook and a pen, and told me to write down what he said. And he started at the beginning of the history of mathematics -- with cavemen, and learning to count. We started there and I filled at least a hundred notebooks, I think, just writing paragraph after paragraph as he dictated. We started with counting, and by the time we were done a couple of months later, I could differentiate and integrate. He made it into a story.

I was ten years old.

Four days ago, my father was in perfect health. Three days ago, he went to bed, woke up in sleeping in a different position than when he'd lain down. On the other side of the room was a broken vase. He had lacerations on his arm, and his glasses were twisted. He couldn't remember anything about what might have happened. He finally told me about it, and I forced him to go to the ER with me. After a billion hours, he was admitted to the hospital... with a brain tumour, and an (as yet) unidentfied mass in one lung. He had brain surgery on Friday the 13 (!!!); it has gone as well as could be expected.

Now, we are in for what looks to be a long haul.

This is all very hard. We don't yet know anything regarding prognosis. I will be online... not that much -- I'm spending most nights at the hospital, as he can't be left alone, and I want my mother to be able to sleep. All of my friends -- not really friends, more family -- have been incredible through this. You guys are all stars, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. For those of you, whom I only speak to online, I hope you're all doing well. I miss you, and hope to be back... soon. I know I'm missing moments in your lives, while I'm so busy with my own. It sucks. I hope to catch up with y'all soon.

I want to write another post later with more details, but I must get some sleep before I head back to the hospital.

I'll go back to that same room tonight, propped up on my chair, staring out the window at the flow of the Hudson, watching the little light atop the little red lighthouse flash. It's like a beacon.

Remember, I think, remember. Everything. Every moment. Horrible, petty, grand, small notes of grace and kindness, frustrated rage, fury. Everything. All terrible right now. All precious.

fictional: (sam&dean)
D. and I were emailing back and forth regarding the Colt. [He has a bunny regarding Samuel Colt, and Yellow Eyes/Azazel... which I am desperately trying to convince him to actually write.]

So we then have the following exchange:

[ profile] hofnarr: It says, "Enoch portrays Azazel as responsible for teaching people to make weapons and cosmetics, for which he was cast out of heaven."
[redacted because he might actually write the thing!]
[ profile] kalichan: Dude, that's awesome. It's like it's REALLY TRUE.
*has inappropriate visual of Yellow Eyes teaching Sam to put on makeup*
But seriously, that is freaking cool.
Spoilers for Season 4 )

I would just like to say that I love my life.


Jan. 29th, 2002 11:40 am
fictional: (Default)
i have just gotten an evil e-mail worm entitled "my party". grr. the computer tells me that it's been quarantined, and i have visions of the worm locked up, barricaded by sector walls, banging aginst the hard drive prison trying to get out. hey, i never said i was good with computers. or understood them. anyway, i think the problem should be fixed. this is a work computer anyway, but it's still quite annoying.

last night was fun, i had plans to sit down and do my homework and whatnot (why does the phrase "homework" always sound so kindergarten? we didn't even have homework then!)but instead i went down the hill to accompany the Dandelion-Head furniture-store-ward. naturally, it being us, we never made it to the furniture store. or the grocery store. instead, we watched many episodes of buffy the vampire slayer, and ate really good (if expensive) food that we really couldn't afford. i had artichoke soup and chicken satay over wild rice. and ginger beer. mmm. and sour cream deep dish apple pie. ate way too much.
it was great except for the fact that the waitress was tweaking, hard and was thus a little frightening. she kept looking at the Dandelion as if she was going to either devour him, or snort him whole. she could have too, her nostrils were certainly large enough.

anyway it was a pretty good night. which entails that i spend this evening locked in my house doing work. possibly pausing intermittently for cleaning-house breaks.

woo hoo!
fictional: (Default)
globally: everything is fine. right.

locally: the problem with getting what you want. is it's never exactly what you wanted. and even if it is, that's not how you pictured it somehow.

i wouldn't trade it for anything, you know.
but still.
fictional: (the look)
the video store was out of all the delightfully depressing movies that i thought i might inflict upon us this evening. so i settled for Shakespeare in Love, and the Matrix on dvd. d. wants to test his "new" DVD player (housewarming present, courtesy of kittie i think) and flat screen tv (just bought yesterday!)

i got Shakespeare in Love on video simply because he also still has the VCR that we bought together in san diego. and i remember the night that we got it. it was probably about ten pm. and i really wanted to watch a movie. (probably it was one of those evenings in that apartment where the silence was too deafening for us to even try and break it with words.) and i told him i wanted him to buy me a vcr. right that second. and he did. from (ahh, weren't those the days) and it was delivered to our door, in twenty minutes, along with two movies.

the vcr will probably break at some point, and then i'm going to take it from him, and stuff it in a closet somewhere as a reminder of those halcyon dot-com days. and more importantly, so that i remember that even the most desperate nights can sometimes be saved.

and now, off to movie night...

love hurts

Jan. 13th, 2002 02:35 pm
fictional: (dark pixie)
there are certain people whose voices can make me want to cry with a simple change of inflection.

my throat gets all choked up with the tears that i have no concrete reason to shed.

and i'm not even unhappy. i just suddenly realize the potential of how much i can be wounded. my skin feels tender all over, all at once anticipating being kissed, or killed.


fictional: (Default)

August 2009

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