Sunday, February 01, 2015

I've fallen and I can't get up

So I had a terrifying experience in the bathroom earlier today.

That opening sentence is the kind of thing I would have written as a prelude to some hilarious anecdote before (circa my first book of essays perhaps, which was full of idiot mishaps). Sadly, these days, I say it with a straight face. It really was terrifying, as it forced me to face how much my health has deteriorated, especially lately, with the added stresses and anxieties and inconveniences and self-doubt of the past few weeks.

Basically this is what happened. I was taking a shower. At some point, I went into a sort of squat, to check whether the drain was clogged with hair, as it did not seem to be draining properly. Immediately my weakened legs gave way from under me and I was forced into a kneeling position on the wet slippery floor. I tried to get up -- to prop myself up on my left leg and then push myself into a standing position -- and realized that I could not. In order to push my body up I needed to use both weakened legs and in the position I was in, I could not.

Panic. I was stuck, and my knees were beginning to hurt. Every effort to push myself up failed. There was nothing solid enough to grab onto that I could use to bring my arms into the equation -- nothing that would bear my weight anyway. I could not even reach my phone to call for help. And even if I could, I might have an attack of hypoglycemia before anyone broke in to find me damp and naked on the floor.

I uttered desperate prayers and tried again. This time my other foot slid to the side and managed to wedge itself against the wall, so with this added leverage I barely -- barely -- was able to push myself up until I was standing, at last, shaking from the effort. Never have I been more grateful that I don't have an enormous bathroom.

My doctor saw me later the same day. I told her about it. She is still confident we can beat this. She gave me twice the usual amount of injections, we did some PT-type stuff, she berated me for some minor slip-ups in my regimen over the past two weeks, and we set another appointment for next week.

Mick says we can install a bar into the wall of my shower area, for me to hold on to and to help me in case anything like this happens again. I think it's a good idea.

I would call this a wake-up call except that I've known for some time that my health is crap. Just the fact that I can barely make it up the stairs in front of my own office building tells me that. (Time to start taking the disabled ramp.)

I need to get better. Or, you know, die quickly and peacefully and soon, in my sleep. Either way. I can't handle a slow decline.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Last night I dreamt...

Last night I was with my family again, and we were moving house, again. It was, of course, a dream -- much the same one I've been having almost every night now for a long time. It's not exactly a recurring dream I suppose, since it's never quite the exact same events, but there is a definite pattern to the events.

Basically what the dreams have in common is that we are moving as a family to a refurbished version of a place we've already lived in -- Paranaque, UP, once even the old Katigbak family house in Lipa. And of course, my mother is with us. In fact, that's how I woke up from this last one -- while deep in the dream, while talking to Mom about who would get which room, I thought, "But aren't you dead? Why didn't anyone tell me you weren't actually dead? That you're back?" And that snapped me awake.

Sometimes I feel like I'm cracking up, a little.

On the health front, I've managed to drag myself to the treadmill in the gym a bit more often, and I think that's helping. (Two things I'm grateful for: the third treadmill they installed in there -- no more waiting -- and the iPod Shuffle I got for Christmas from Mookie and Sarge.) I'm getting a little sick of my diet, but even slight deviations from it have bad consequences -- coughing, vomiting, weakness, etc. Need to find more doctor-approved food and recipes. Luckily Mick makes this vegetable rice that is very good.

Still have trouble sleeping, getting around, going up stairs, and sometimes breathing. Must be careful to eat regularly, as I've had a couple of mild hypoglycemia attacks this week alone. And my vision is not very good right now (mainly due to the coughing and vomiting and not sleeping enough). Once my situation at work settles I imagine things will be a little calmer. Or not. It depends.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Sitting in His Nowhere Land

Well, it looks like 2014 isn't done with royally fucking me over quite yet. I will be pleasantly surprised if, before this new year is through, I have not killed myself and/or a number of other people. Happy thoughts. Happy thoughts.

Friday, January 02, 2015

The New Year

Let me entertain the notion, for a moment, that life and its circumstances can be broken down neatly into one-year units, because maybe then I can say with some conviction: 2014 was the worst year ever, and I'm glad to see it gone. Maybe then I can believe that things will be different in 2015, that the grief and pain and sheer damn aggravation from so many things will not carry over into the next twelve months. Let me believe that for a while.

I won't lie: When I think about it, what I really want from 2015 is a natural, quick, and painless death. I honestly don't know what I want more than that any more; I'm even having second thoughts about another book. But I know that that very specific kind of death is hard to come by. If I can't have that, then maybe I can have a year with less health problems and personal issues to deal with. Less discomfort. Less frustration. More things to look forward to, even if I don't know what those things might be. Oh, and prosperity and happiness for Mick, my family, and friends, if the universe can manage it. That would be nice.