Thursday, December 19, 2013

God, I Hope This Has Some Continuity To It

 Yep, and shake it 'til it's teeth rattle. Somebody has to do this, I'm getting too weak to do it alone. I can certainly seize the day by the throat, but I can't shake it until it's teeth rattle. Just not enough strength left to do that. Just so we are all clear, my day now is nothing compared to what it was 18 months ago. No way, no how. I was cleared by CT and examination both, of having any cancer what so ever. I was feeling pretty damn salty every day, I was 80%, maybe a bit more, of having my Pre Cancer strength back. I was really hitting my stride at work. Home was wonderful,  but it always has been. Home has always been my island, the one place where any problem that  came up wasn't as terrible as one might think. Now, since my bleeding is accelerating, home is something I may have to abandon in order to save my children from a pretty nasty sight. And to save Liz, Sarah, and Addison the worry of watching over me as I slide ever faster toward Critical Mass. A seemingly simple decision, one would think, but that just isn't the case.
   It's not simple because the Hospice House is, unless I'm terribly mistaken, is fifteen or so miles away in Odessa. That means if they come over there to visit, they've got to travel two of the worst highways in the Midland/Odessa area.  These peckerwoods out here have no sense at all when they get behind the wheel. They drive under the speed limit on the inside lane of 4 lane highways. I assume that's a simple problem of being too damn stupid to know better, or that it's closer to "I don't give a fuck, and you can't make me". I believe it's more of the second than the first. Two people have died on the one of the highways because some ignorant cock muncher saw he needed to exit, so instead of changing lanes and going up one exit and circling back, they just cut across all the traffic lanes to make the exit. Fucking genius. The other two ways getting there and back aren't any better. So, if I factor in everything as worst possible outcome, it makes it a difficult decision. Yes, I'm going to Hospice House when the bleeding gets worse. And man, am I bleeding this morning.  So far for an hour and fifteen minutes from the time I first woke up and had to clear my trach. And I can tell before I even was close to coughing. I'm getting very used to the taste of warm, fresh blood. I feel almost like Bela Lugosi. Oh now, you know, Dracula? The first Dracula of the big screen.

  Here's the shits about this bleeding bullshit. It's not consistent in any fashion. I started out bleeding a lot from my mouth. Then more, or I assume, from my throat beneath my tracheotomy. Now it's back to both places and is nearly stopped. I'm also going to assume that my coughing spells that trigger the bleeding (from overly irritating the tumor site), are a large part of getting the bleeding started. There's also the chance that I am sleeping with my mouth open and that is irritating the back of my throat and I start to cough. Not that it matters, really, how it starts it's how it finishes that matters to me. If I get away with that very hard coughing, then there's a chance I could stay home longer. Let us not hold our breath for that, shall we? When any new symptom shows up, the first thing I do is sit down. Close my eyes, and search for the memory of everything the Doctor told me in my last visit to MD Anderson. If I get stuck, then I hunt for any type of recall device I've used. You know, going back over the day you're needing to recall, and searching for something that jogs our the specific memory you need. This one, where the Doc told me about the bleeding, was hidden in a reflection. When we were talking, I looked up and to one side and saw myself in a mirror. So I hopped up, went to the bathroom, looked in the mirror, and can tell you that yes, the Doc did tell me about how badly the bleeding is going to get. I won't go into details since I asked him for the worst case scenario, but it's bad man.

   My Hospice nurse has already told their people that I'm on the list to be there. He didn't say when, but I can say for certain, not until after the first of the year. My oldest son and his family are coming to visit shortly after Christmas. I will be here for that, even if I have to hide myself in the master bathroom for the time he is here, just to take care of the bleeding. I'll be here for his visit. There's not enough people in town to drag me off if I set myself to being home for his visit.

  I'll be doing some checking out of the Hospice House. I'll be overly pissed off if they don't have secure WIFI for me to use so I can keep up the blog easily. I will keep up with it, regardless. But man, doing it on the phone with the tiny keyboard is going to suck mule wieners. I was asked yesterday, by one of my friends in private message, if I was going to write one or two blogs to be published after I hit Critical Mass. I hadn't thought about it, but on the instant he mentioned that, I've decided to do just that. It seems only fitting, don't you think, to write one to be sent out after I croak. I'm not sure what I'll put in that last blog, though. Probably my overall thoughts of this entire process. Maybe I'll let Mr Temper out for some uncontrolled anger. I'm just not certain. I guess you'll all find out after I've hit Critical Mass.

 Sorry the blog is so jumpy. I'm riding the Morphine Train out of Fugdathurts station. I was having some lovely make my eyes water  and threatening to make me throw up pain this morning. I probably should have waited to write it, but what the hell, I only live once, right?

 So let's see now, yesterday I said I'd tell about the Lab and my fight to get rid of a raccoon on the Lab's face. Let's see if I can remember this correctly.

  The dogs and I, along with my little brother (because I couldn't go anywhere without mom making me take the little brother) had gone way back to the far northwest corner of the section the ranch was set upon. there were a couple of things back there that were pretty slick. Another pond, very deep but never stocked. It was fed by an artesian well that's walls had collapsed on and was now a pretty nice spring. The water was damn cold, too. There was also an outcropping of limestone and shale, probably 50' or more above the trail we walked. You had to keep your eyes open walking along side the wall there, the shale had places snakes could hide out in that put them about neck high on a kid, middle of the stomach high on a 6' adult. On top of that outcropping was some open grass with slabs of different sizes of limestone. It didn't look like a quarry, but I always wondered if it hadn't been some kind of fence post making place. the slabs were different sizes, but always about the same thickness of about 8" or so. the same as the limestone fence posts. There were some perfectly round stones there that Dad had taken to Fort Hays State to find out what they were. Turned out to be fossilized mussels. Pretty cool shit. I dragged one home that had a section of spine of some critter in it. Right down to seeing what I still believe to be spinal cord showing. Mom broke it throwing it at a rattlesnake in the driveway of the farm house. Very close to the where the sidewalk to get into the house started. So yes, it was a cool place to go look for shit.
  On this little trip out there the dogs had something penned under one of those stone slabs. And what ever it was was very pissed off. Hiss, growl and carrying on something fierce. I could make the dogs leave it alone, it was only a matter of time that what ever it was, was going to be dug out by the Lab (his name was Rink, long assed name on his papers the old man got when he rescued him. I'll finish that right after I finish this) and the fight would be on. When we walked out a long ways from the house, I took a walking stick that had a particularly nasty knot on one end of it, a pocket knife, and at least a couple of quarts of water. No back pack. I put the water in an old gunny sack I found and tied it over one shoulder, hobo style.
  I was right, the damn Lab had dug back far enough that the critter had had enough of being harassed and attacked the Lab. The two other dogs were scrappy, but they didn't want anything to do with this critter, and that was wise, I believe. The Lab never yelped or anything when the Raccoon grabbed his face and started in chewing on him, trying to get to his eyes. I freaked out, of course. The dog was trying to get a bite into the coon's middle, but the angle was wrong and the coon simply let the dog move his lower half around like he was chasing a water dish. On the top end, the coon was holding the dog's ears in his hands so he could chew more effectively on the Lab's face. It looked like it was working. The Lab started to try and shake the coon off, then tried to roll the coon off. No way, the Raccoon had a good place to fight from, and he knew it. I grabbed the walking stick, and used the particularly nasty knot to hit the raccoon in the side. I didn't have any real plan of what to do if I knocked him off and he started in after me, I just needed to get it off the dog. Three or four hits and I got the coon dislodged from the dog. He hit the ground, started at me (yes, I damn near pooped my pants) but the Lab got him by the neck and shook it to death. Only after the coon was dead did the other two dogs get close enough to look at the raccoon. I gave thought to skinning it and making a hat. Really? you ask. Yes, really. Daniel Boone was still on the boob tube every Saturday night on channel almost 12. But, in the fight I guess the dog got more of the Coon's middle than I thought. He was chewed to pieces, and the pelt was ruined by that and a couple of really nasty marks from the walking stick. We left it where it lay and headed home. We'd had a pretty big day, and I still needed to tend to the horse and check on the cattle in the Southwest quarter. It was along these lines that I decided no matter how cool it looked, there was just too damn much work in ranching or farming. I was beginning to think Big Game Hunter in Africa would be a good job. Around a month or so after that, the Rents took us the the Sky Vu Drive In in Russell to watch The Hellfighters with John Wayne. That was my job, I'd decided, putting out burning oil and gas wells. I mean shit, how cool is that stuff, right? Real danger, high explosives, world travel. Oh yeah, I'd find a way to do that.

 I have to get coffee later in the day. The Morphine Train kicked my ass and I slept for an hour right here holding the lap top on my lap.

 Hugs and all that goes with them.

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