Wednesday, November 14, 2012

56 - Closet Case

I had become used to dozing off, often the similarities of consciousness and sleep were too close to differentiate. Given any opportunity, my mind would draw inward with a natural desire to figure out all that had transpired over the last month. The most troubling part of it all was the starting point. I couldn't be sure when, exactly, the coma arrived.

Nevertheless, I was in my mother's spare bedroom and had to focus on the present. She was attempting to help me ready the bed that I would be sleeping on until I was well enough to go home. At the time, I was unaware that I was the only one who considered this bedroom to be anything other than my last stop. My last resting place. My death bed.

However, my ghastly prognosis never prevented me from preparing for the next day. Everything I did had a purpose. No matter what dire circumstances had occurred, or what tragic end was to come, I only needed to focus on the moment I was in. Each movement that I would normally take for granted required my full attention and effort.

Now that I was on the small unstable mattress, I had to change into a clean set of clothes to sleep in. Trying to maintain some sort of humility, I insisted on changing my enormous sweatpants myself while my mother waited outside the bedroom door. Since I spent most of my time trying to keep my pants up around my swollen waste, the XXL cotton bottoms slid off with ease. Except the ankles.

While on my back, I scraped the arches of my feet along the inside of my legs, shoving my trousers down until they rolled into a ball around my feet. The elastic on the ends of the pants would not allow the fabric to move any further, and I looked as if I had been snared by a dirty laundry trap.

Only a month before this moment, I would have sat up, grabbed the ends of the sweats, and pulled them over my feet. That was no longer the case. I had no muscles to lift myself with my abdomen, and scarcely enough strength to roll myself onto my side. Using the last measure of force in my upper body, I twisted and manipulated into an attempt at a fetal position.

I stretched my fingers reaching for the confining cotton grappling my ankles. All the while my puffed-up belly left little room for crunching my torso together. When my fingertips finally snagged the waistband I celebrated with a pause to catch my breath, and then tugged with all I could muster. With luck, my less than clean underpants came off with the oversized perspiration pants.

In accordance with Murphy's Law, I assumed that once I was in a new pair of underwear and pajama bottoms I would immediately feel the pressure of a overdue trip to the toilet, however I was eager to make myself look decent. After I pulled myself together my mother returned to assist me the rest of the way. Tuck me in. She brought the portable commode into the bedroom and presented what looked like a pee pad for a small dog. It was an absorbent protector for the mattress that was placed under my danger areas. Between my waist and my thighs laid the greatest risk of bedding damage.

Since my digestive issues were dicey at best I still could not rest my head parallel to my body. I had a fear of vomiting in my sleep as my head would swim searching for a focal point once the lights were shut off. Mom propped three fluffy pillows behind my back and began to dole out my narcotics.

The idea of me having easy access to the Oxcodone and Attivan the docs sent home with me would have been the absolute wrong decision. An addict in pain and off his rocker in possession of opiates. No good.

Unsurprisingly, I do not remember falling asleep that night, but I did have a memorable mid-morning experience. Fortunately, I awoke when my bladder was ready to be evacuated. Hardly examining my options I determined that I could take care of the matter alone. Stubborn, I was confident that I did not have to utilize the demoralizing portable throne three feet away from the bed. I wanted to use the private restroom immediately down the hall.

To accomplish this, all I had to execute was a lurch from the bed that would be enough to grasp the door frame of the closet. From there the molding along the wall could be my life line preventing me from crashing to the floor. I was devising the plan in broken thought processes while I shifted myself upright on the edge of the mattress.

All I had to do was stand upright long enough to fall forward and grasp the door jam. There was obvious risk, but I was a man with intent. I dug the balls of my feet into the carpet and wedged my heals against the bottom of the bed. I tightened my torso like a broken spring and shoved my hands down into the mattress with everything I had. Simultaneously, I attempted to draw on my leg muscles.

As soon as I began my journey, it was over. I was buried face first into cardboard boxes, and hanging clothes. It took me a moment to gather myself before I realized I had been sabotaged by the bed. The mattress slid off the frame when I forced my weight into it. I pictured myself diving into the keepsakes and coats and chuckled.

"Seriously?" I asked myself.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

55 - Hunker Down

My sleeping arrangements were next on my list of tasks.  Mom had a spare room to set up her first son.  Me.  The young man who moved away to college at 18 years old had enormous opportunity, and a multitude of skills to be successful in life.  I had returned to her 20 years later crippled by alcohol.  A social habit that gradually morphed into a hellish physical dependence.

My bed was a single sized mattress and box spring that was barely longer than six feet.  The cot was nearly identical to the length of my body, and since there was no bed frame, the stack of bedding came up to my shin.  While my mother painstakingly guided me, I squatted with my fingers stretched downward like antennae searching for some solid ground.  Vibrations were gripping my entire muscular system by the time I finally reached the sheets.

I  allowed the entirety of my dead weight on the heels of my hands when the mattress suddenly launched across the box spring, and out from underneath me.  I sat on the canvas covered wooden slats, caught off guard by the bedding ambush.  I leered over my shoulder, and huffed at the pallet deposited on floor behind me.  My relationship with the bed was established on a sour note.

Monday, September 17, 2012

54 -Showcase Showdown

My home health nurse completed her first visit with me at my mother's house.  As she packed her medical equipment, she had one final task for me before she could move on to the next household.  She needed my signature to verify she had gone over my vital signs with me.  As with most people, asking for a signature is not a hefty ordeal.  However, with little control of my nervous system, it was a complicated task for me.  Luckily, my autograph typically looks like a decipherable drawing done by a toddler, so there was no need to sweat it.

From November 18, 2011 on, my mother was to be my primary caregiver.  With that, the nurse spoke to mom at a minuscule volume, as if the nurse was whispering to her confidentially.  I could hear a few truncated words, and phrases.

The nurse had a three ring binder of material, and notes for my mother to refer to, if needed.  I heard the word hospice, again, and I still did not know what that implied.  The only connection I could make was 'hospitality', after working in the food and beverage industry for my entire adult life.  I was sure I was better off left in the dark when it came to things that were supposed to make me comfortable.  It never sounded pleasant when nurses and doctors discussed my comfort level.

Monday, August 27, 2012

53 -Couchridden

Although I was no longer in the hospital, where I was provided with 'round the clock care, I continued to have a small tether to professional health care.  On November 18, 2011, it had only been a month since my liver shut down due to my destructive love affair with vodka.  A home health nurse was assigned to me, and when she first arrived, I wasn't sure what to expect.  Meeting someone new was embarrassing, unlike when I was in a hospital setting, and had given up all humility.

On the previous day, the first at my mother's house, I caught a real look at myself in the mirror for the first time since I fell into the coma.  There was a mirror in my hospital room, but I made sure I only caught glimpses of myself.  I knew that I did not want to know how frightening my deteriorated reflection was.  It was my belief that the least I knew about how dire my condition was, the better.  Otherwise, I feared I would begin to dwell on the negativity of my situation, and become more prone to accepting death.

Like most bathrooms, the one at my mother's house has a mirror over the sink.  It encompasses most of the wall running sideways along the right wall, directly across from the shower on the left.  I had to struggle to hold myself up on the sink counter to make my way to the toilet.  During that endeavor, and pausing to suck the oxygen out of the room, I was standing in front of the looking glass.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

52 -Pharmacon

It was November 17, 2011, and after four excruciating weeks at MUSC Hospital in Charleston, I was on my mother's couch in Beaufort, South Carolina.  At 38 years old, my heavy drinking, and constant partying, had come to a screeching halt.  I was not ready for last call, but my liver was fatty, and scarred from the vodka, and my irresponsible days were over. I recognized I needed patience, perseverance, and tremendous care if I was to hope for any improvement in health.

I laid on the sofa, soaking in the familiar room in my reluctantly, handicapped state.  When I attempted to focus on the large, flat screen television in the opposite corner of the living room, my eyes bounced as if I had been dancing in circles.  The dizziness only added to my mouth watering nausea, and I was unable to manage a comfort zone.  The excess fluid in my abdomen was wreaking havoc on my insides, and did not allow pain-free movement.  On the contrary, my gut felt like a medicine ball, rolled in shards of glass.

The hospital sent me home with a deluge of medications to keep up with.  Of course, I needed help, but to not sway from the norm, I was stubborn as hell about it.  I could do it myself, I insisted.  I was to manage varying dosages of eleven different medications, and supplements.  My encephalopathy was already increasing, so my thought patterns were completely out of whack, and I could barely focus on the small print on all of the bottles.

Monday, August 13, 2012

51 -Alcoholic Remourse

After a lengthy, difficult, and unexpected recovery, I am once again, a resident of Charleston, South Carolina.  In October of 2011, my excessive drinking, which had grown into a physical dependence to alcohol, caught up with me.  My esophagus ruptured, my liver failed, and I fell into a coma.  I spent 30 days at MUSC Hospital, and once there were no more tests they could run on me, I was released.  I was forced to move into my mother's house in Beaufort, South Carolina.  I could not care for myself.

The amount of knowledge I have gained in the past ten months has been extraordinary.  I now realize that when I left MUSC, the physicians did not presume that I would survive this ordeal.  As a matter of fact, when they signed my release, the hospital staff was sending me home to die.  According to my mother, I was not expected to make it through the holidays.  When the time had come for me to leave, my health was not much better than it had been when I arrived.

Two weeks ago, on August 2nd, I had an appointment at MUSC to have an endoscopy, and capture some images of the current state of my throat.  The nurses, and anesthesiologist were obviously confused about my reason for the procedure.  The only information they had about me was from my first scope in January.  Numerous alerts, and warnings were appearing in my records for cautions against a weakened immune system, diet recommendations, and a mixture of problems due to encephalopathy.

Friday, August 3, 2012

50 -Untrodden Territory

November 16, 2011

Finally, the nurses have me sitting up on the right edge of my hospital bunk, and my upper body is uncomfortably exposed to the frigid, air conditioned room.  They pull a t-shirt down, over my torso, and I feel a twinge of pain when the wrinkly fiber scrapes my nipples.

When I peek down, I realize I am wearing sweatpants that could qualify as "one size fits two".  They swallow my legs, and cling tightly around my midriff.  The waist, and legs are definitely suited for those with American girth.  I, in contrast, appear as if we are in the midst of famine, with my skeletal frame, and inflamed abdomen.

A smiling orderly arrives with a wheelchair.  My wheelchair.  The words echo in my mind, and are hard to swallow, but I will not be in the wheeler for long.  I cannot, and I will not let this end with disability.  Instead, I intend to surpass my previous fitness level, and not to be doomed to an inability of walking correctly, as my physical therapist has suggested.  First, I have to stand up, turn around, and sit my decrepit ass in the man-powered, trolley rocker.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012



Being a thin man, I am often perturbed by the double standard of mockery when it comes to weight.

Hey Skinny Boy!
Is that all you are going to eat?
Why don't you eat something?
You never eat enough.
Are you OK? You are skin, and bones.
Hey, a breeze is going to blow you down.

All of these comments are tiresome, and old. I would be completely out of line, if things were the other way around.

Hey Fat Boy!
Are you going to eat that much?
Why don't you stop eating?
You eat too much.
Are you OK? You are skin, and fat.
Hey, a breeze will stir up, if you fall down.

It would be phat to sit, and enjoy a meal without others observing, and commenting, on my habits.
That's the skinny.

Monday, July 30, 2012



Once, I had a 1984 Mazda 626 -Hatchback.  Once.

During a typical blistering summer here on the coast of South Carolina, I needed a car.  My relationship with my previous car had run its course, so to speak.  By that, I mean, I drove that sucker until it quit.  Since my job was not within walking distance, I needed transportation, pronto.

My father came across this gem that was, in fact, a motorized vehicle.  It had a tepid blue-grey paint job, that would suit any cold, and dreary February sky.  It came fully loaded with all of the gadgets of a 1984 compact car.  A throttling 1.8 Liter engine, bumpers, lights, tires, and most importantly disc brakes in the front end.

With $475, and a handshake, this beauty was mine.  I would blaze through town, pimpin' my ride, with my AM/FM stock radio, and all of the treble it could muster.  Cruising about my neighborhood, I always had the power windows down.  That was the best way to cool off, as the air conditioner was busted.  The delightful summer breeze felt as if someone was holding a hair dryer up to my cheek.  It was absolutely chilling, and my skin zings with goose bumps, when I think back to those few days that I owned her.

I ran into some girls that were renting a beach house for a week,  invited me to have some booze, and party favors at their vacation spot.  "You don't have to worry about driving home.  You can stay the night," they said.  I held out as best I could, and reluctantly agreed to go.
"I just hope this car will make it," I thought.  I didn't let that stop me, though.

In order to complete my journey, I would have to drive over The Cooper River Bridges.  On the way out, I would take the Silas Pearman Bridge  It was a rust colored steel truss bridge opened in 1966.  A relatively steep bridge by today's standards, and by far the highest climb in Charleston, South Carolina.  As I was descending the final span, I felt the brakes of my new, previously owned vehicle drag.  There was enough friction to slow the car down while rolling down the grade in neutral.

Damn.  I had to turn the car around, in hopes of getting the car back home before it completely died.  This was going to be a serious test for the blue rocket, as I had to return over the Grace Memorial Bridge.  A bridge that was opened in 1929, and deemed obsolete by 1979.  It was considered so dangerous at the time, that a federal bridge inspector refused to travel over it, in the late 1990's.

I was able to get my car motoring to a blazing 60 miles per hour before I began the first steep incline.  The car slowed immediately, as I jumped down to fourth, then third gear.  The pedal was to the medal, and I managed to maintain 40 miles an hour, while causing a traffic jam behind me. 

After much tension, and worry, I was finally approximately one mile from home.
Just then, the car directly behind me began to flash its high beams, and I blew it off.  "I know, I am moving slow," I thought.  However, when I checked the side mirror, a crimson shower of sparks was flowing  from the front of the car.  I immediately jerked to the shoulder of the road, and when I took my foot off the gas, my whip screeched to a halt.

I bailed out to inspect the source, and the rims were white hot, glowing intensely in the shadow of dusk.  Some guys were hanging out on their front porch, and come to survey the situation.

"Hey man!  You could fry chicken on that rim!", one of them said confidently, as if this were an everyday occurrence.

"Ha, ha.  Yeah, that's right," I replied.  This was followed by the sound of a gas grill igniting.  Wooofff!

The brake lines, and tires burst into flames, and we all stepped back with caution, and anticipation.  In an instant, I dialed 911, and reported the fire.  The fire station was only around the corner on the same block, so it would not be long before help arrived.

I heard the fire engines start, the wailing sirens, and belching horns, and I was relieved.  "I'm saved," I thought, as the fire truck raced past me, and my now obviously burning car.  I waved my arms at them, and the fire crew didn't even glance in my direction.

They continue to the end of the street, and returned, sans sirens.  By now, the fire had burned itself out, and was smoldering.  One of the firemen finally noticed the smoldering car, and they pulled over.  I was approached by one of the firemen, and he asked, "Hey, bro!  Where the hell were you?"

"What?", I replied.  "I was standing next to the burning car."

"Oh.  Well, what happened?", he asked.

"My brakes locked up, the friction caused a fire," I answered.

"Man, you gotta get that shit fixed", was his response.

"No kidding?", I asked sarcastically.

Afterwards, I had the car towed to the local brake repair shop.  When I asked them how much it would be to fix the car, the answer was "Forty five dollars for the tow, and $900, to fix the brakes."

"OK," I said.  "Let me pay the tow, and I will think about what to do about the repairs tomorrow."
"Aight, then," the man said.

I wonder what ever happened to that gorgeous car.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

49 -Sanitarium

November 16, 2011

I am tremendously relieved to see my mother, and step-dad, enter my room.  I have no desire to be in the hospital anymore, and the thought of how I am going to maintain, and improve my health, hardly crosses my mind.  Meanwhile, a few of the nurses are here to discuss my medical discharge, and provide my mother advice on what to do next.

My healing place has instantaneously become a whir of anxiety, an early reminder of one of the troubles that I used to medicate with alcohol.  The brief moment of comfort is vanishing in a flash with the help of my miniscule memory retention, and what ADD on LSD must be like.  There is nothing to be afraid of, and I cannot pinpoint the source of my panic.  There may be no need for fright, but my fear is real.

I understand I am losing my grip on reality, as I have been throughout this entire ordeal. Tumultuously struggling to maintain, during my incessant grind of survival, is absolutely exhausting.  I attempt to eavesdrop on the exchange between my mother, and the attending physician.  He will sign off on my discharge from The MUSC Hospital.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

48 -What Have I Become?

Mid - November 2011

For a few days now, I have been feeling as though my hospital stay is coming to a close.  I am undergoing much fewer procedures, and tests.  On top of that, all of the staff that is caring for me seem as if they are on autopilot, and going through the motions.  The somber mood of all my visitors is puzzling, too.

All afternoon, my friends, family, and acquaintances have been stopping by my hospital room to wish me well.  I am beginning to think that the coincidental gathering is occurring because I have no tests to undergo, and the doctors, and nurses have run out of reasons to poke me with needles.  Whether the syringes are for dosages of medicine, or drawing blood for testing, I am running out of veins.

I am reaching my breaking point when one of the nurses fills me in, and tells me that there is nothing more they can do, and I will leaving the hospital.  The rest of my afternoon, and evening, I am preparing to go home.  I am finally leaving the hospital, after what seems like six months.  However, I am not returning to my home where I nearly passed away, but heading to my mother's house in Beaufort, South Carolina.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

47 -Stealing Home

Mid November 2011

I feel as if I will never be released from the hospital.  From my perspective, I have been here for a number of months, but the calendar does not lie.  It is only mid-November, and I fell into my coma October 16th, and opened my eyes on the twentieth of October.  With all of my trips in and out of reality, I wouldn't be able to approximate the date, day, or time, if the nurses, and medical students didn't tell me.

As of now, the physicians are explaining that there are no more tests they can run.  The M.D. already extracted excess fluid from my abdomen during the most recent paracentesis procedure.  Today, I sense that I am retaining significantly more fluid. The treatment for distention of the abdomen, is caused by ascites, also known as abdominal fluid. 

A paracentesis is similar to releasing pressure in a garden hose.  A needle that is about five inches long, and about the size of a catheter, is inserted into my abdominal cavity.  A doctor is manipulating the needle while a nurse works the ultrasound wand to determine whether they are exporting liquid from my body, or removing body parts.  

When I suggest to the hospital staff that I could use another paracentesis, they inform me that my body cannot handle that kind of stress just yet.  This is on the grounds they exonerated three and a half liters of fluid that were trespassing in my gut only a few days ago.  My liver has already been diagnosed with cirrhosis, and my kidneys are borderline functional.  They have done all they can do.

Therefore, during my long, and drawn out stay, the doctors, nurses, professors, technicians, and medical students have simply kept me stable.  I am conscious, even if out of touch with reality.  Beyond that, I believe I am physically worse for wear.  

I have hardly eaten, and I am experiencing a nearly total loss of motor skills.  I cannot feed myself.  I am unable to roll over in bed.  More than two hours of sleeping, during a simple nap, is not part of my routine.  My paramount of success is my inability to walk, or failure to use the restroom properly, rather than soil my bed.

My mother, and stepfather have been traveling to Charleston, South Carolina, continuously.  They are here as often as they are able.  I know Mom & E wish  they could be with me at all times, however they live approximately seventy miles south of here, in Beaufort, South Carolina.  They will be here this evening, and my roommate/lifesaver is going to be here, as well.

Come to think of it, I have so many friends and family that plan to visit me today, that I feel as if I have missed something.  It is almost like they have failed to remember that I survived this ordeal.  The gathering could pass as a living wake.

Photo:  Faux Capacitor

By:  Donnie Wayne Todd

Saturday, July 14, 2012

46- Beyond 12 Steps

July 14, 2012

Present Day

I am back home this week, in Charleston, South Carolina. July the sixteenth, will be nine months since my esophagus ruptured. Since the day my liver became excessively scarred, inhibiting normal blood flow, and causing excess blood pressure in my veins. What began as an occasional drinking binge in college, eventually devolved into my complete, physical dependence to alcohol. A relationship with hooch that I never considered possible, after watching my father succumb to the destruction caused by his fixation with booze.
This is my first extended return to Chuck-town, and visit for more than one night. I have been walking around the city, and it is a tremendous relief to feel some manner of normal. This is what the physician's told me that I would never experience, for the remainder of my shortened life. According to them, I should have been dead three months ago. Yet, I have been walking for hours at a time, and while climbing a staircase, I am able to ascend two steps at a time. This is another sign of my progress, and it is absolutely gratifying.
Last Fall, my younger brother was pushing me around in a wheelchair. Looking back, I can't imagine how that made him feel. At only 38 years old, I had become immobile due to excessive drinking. My 34 year old, baby brother was touring me around in the hospital courtyard, during what could have been a beautiful afternoon, tossing the football around.
Instead, I was wrapped as tightly as Hannibal Lecter in "The Silence of The Lambs". Encased in a blanket from my hospital bed, to hold out the chilly November air. I could feel every fragment of debris on the sidewalk, and under the wheels of the chair, as we circled the park benches. A pebble, an acorn, or even a small crack in the concrete, would send shock waves of intense pain, throughout my body.
I could feel the massive amount of abnormally retained fluid in my abdomen, while it jostled, and moved my guts to wherever there was room. It felt as if something was twisting my bowels into knots, and shaking my belly to the point of nausea. Meanwhile, I had lost a lot of bone, and muscle mass, and I appeared to be much older than I actually was.
Now, that I am back in town, it is not apparent that I was ever sick, or near death, for that matter. I still appear to be underweight, but otherwise it has been abundantly clear, that most of the locals I run into are completely unaware of what happened to me. The most common greeting so far has been, "DWT! Long time, no see." Sometimes, "I haven't seen you in awhile" is added to the exchange. Furthermore, it is not surprising that some have mentioned, "You're headed to the bar, I bet." I throw an unexpected curve ball when I tell them I no longer drink.
What has been off putting, is the lack of seriousness when I drop the heavy news. "Yea, I have been in Beaufort. I almost died, last fall", I tell them.
"Ha, ha. You should take it easy", has been a common response.
Although, I reiterate the event of my near death, the conversation moves on, and is completely ignored. I don't expect anything from these acquaintances, I only find it odd that some things can be so easily brushed off.
However, I have seen some friends who were close to me over the years. Many of them haven't seen me since I was on my death bed. They have failed to be supportive, or congratulatory of my startling, and unexpected recovery. I simply cannot wrap my head around what must be going through their minds. I knew this was coming, as other addicts have told me, yet it doesn't make it any easier to deal with.
It has been a long, and difficult nine months, but overall I am extremely happy. I feel good, I am on my home turf, and actually mingling with people. Yet, most importantly, this is my first real test with being out on the town, among the ever present alcohol. There have been no urges, whatsoever.
Finally, I am staying with the new girl. She is someone I have known for quite awhile, but a real connection has developed with my sobriety. Without drinking, I am happier than I have been since...
I can't even remember the last time I was this upbeat, and lively.
Come to think of it, it takes about nine months to grow a new human body. This is my second.
Alcohol was not my friend.
Photo: Tim Todd Driving The Chair
About These Stories

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

45- Cantankerous

*This story is in my memory bank, and to me, this is how it went down.  As you read, you will agree that a lot of this is not feasible, or rational.  It involves a former co-worker, and according to my family, my most frequent visitor when I was in the hospital.  This is one of the visits that stands out.  I remember him being around a lot, yet, to not stray from what has become the norm, I have not spoken to him, since.  So goes the life of a recovering addict.*

"All this happened, more or less. The war parts, anyway, are pretty much true."
--Kurt Vonnegut

November 2011

 My private dormitory, that seems set-apart from the rest of the hospital, has reverted to its original appearance.  The room is saturated in a amber hue, and the 1960's art deco chairs are lining the left wall.  They have lime-green upholstery, and reflective chrome legs that run from the floor, encasing the dirty pattern.  Through the chicken wire laced window of my door, I can see another entryway.  It resembles a large, walk-in cooler door, and a heavy latch.  I think of the lock that Wendy used to imprison Jack, in Kubrick and King's,  The Shining. 

The length of my bed is uncomfortably lacking, and I am constantly in a hunched over posture.  I have no strength to right myself, and when I attempt to push my dead weight with my feet, an alarm sounds.  Its not a warning sound, "beep- don't do that", but the shrill of an alarm clock that could wake the patient on the floor above me.  The piercing noise does not end, until one of the hospital staff admits they can hear it.  If this were an emergency, the wait would be too long.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

44- Well Suited Disgrace

Autumn 2011

My physical trainer reminds me that I have only accomplished half of my goal.  My intention is to show the hospital staff that I am regaining my strength, so they might consider letting me out of this hospital.  I realize I will not be going  home, and fortunately my mother doesn't live far from Charleston.  Since she will be working, I must demonstrate some sort of self-reliance before they consider my release.

When I finish the trip down the long highway, and back to my bed, it will be the furthest I have traveled by foot since The Incident.  I remind myself that the best mindset I can muster should be the advice I was given by my high school, cross-country, and track coach.  He used to help us discover an extra reserve of energy during the third lap of a four lap race.  The slowest, and toughest lap.  This is my symbolic third lap and final fourth lap kick, today.

Mental anguish is causing serious doubt of whether any of this is worth the effort.  The hows, and whys of what it took to put me in this situation are upsetting, and cause for self-degradation.  Every time a rubber walker wheel is caught on a metal door jam, each instance that I drag a fattened toe on the cold tile, I question the culprit.  Me.  I did this.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

43- Making Imperceptible Haste

Autumn 2011

As I begin my trek down what seems to be the longest hallway the hospital has to offer, I have to extract all of the will, and strength my body can provide.  Right now, the source of all my determination is all, but exhausted.  I am relearning to walk.  Check that.  I remember how to walk, yet I am unable to communicate the process to my limbs.  I wonder how many drinks it took for me to fall into an alcoholic paralysis.

I was already walking by the time I was nine months old.  Now, 447 months later, my muscles are nearly in a full state of atrophy.  The combination of being bedridden, and not digesting what little food I can eat, has made my muscles vanish.  I have always been thin, but now I look as if I am a man who is sick, but in his upper 60s.  I am 38 years old, and this was not supposed to happen this fast.  Alcoholic cirrhosis latches on later in life, so I still had time to quit.  I surely wouldn't have, though.  This had to happen.

Friday, June 29, 2012

42- Pursuit of Swagger

Autumn 2011

I don't have much time to get over the recent communication problem with my cheese master.  My physical therapist has arrived, and she is chipper as ever.  It amazes me when someone who is supposed to be a motivational tool is merely another element of the hospital that irritates me.  She is like a cat burglar when she darts into the room, and startles me a bit.  I need to show some improvement today, if I ever want to get out of here.

The physical trainer (PT) is chock full of energy, as usual.  She claps her hands in front of her torso, parallel to her forearms like a college cheerleader.  I think of my time at Clemson, and all of the fun we had on Saturdays at the stadium.  She is has a bob, dirty blond wisp to her hair, and is fit.  I can tell she works out, but she is no bodybuilder.  Her black clothing is tight enough to exercise, and is conservative enough to wear in a hospital.  

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Initial Wisecracks

Initial Wisecracks

"If names are not correct, language will not be in accordance with the truth of things."
— Confucius

Throughout my life, my name has been one of confusion, disarranging, befuddlement, amusement, bemusement, companionship, ridicule, familiarity, and improper 'shortening'.

When I was a child, my family called me Buddy. It became apparent to me later that this was because I was my father's little Buddy. Moreover, I didn't like the name Donnie at the time. None of the other kids in my classrooms ever had the same name as me. Additionally, if our teacher decided to call on us in alphabetical order, my last name was Todd. As most things, this was a big deal in a child's mind, although, I didn't lose any sleep over it.

Simultaneously, The Donnie & Marie show was popular, and I was consistently asked where Marie was. Again, not a big deal, and when someone makes that reference now, I am quick to point out they are showing their age.

Unsurprisingly, when I was an early teen, the insults began to arrive. Donnie Wayne Toad was a popular one to say the least. Again, this is not something that would bother me in adulthood, but a boy going through puberty can have a bit of a time with the jabs. Unfortunately for my first girlfriend, this nomenclature stuck around a bit in high school. Since she was dating me, she was known as Toady to some.

However, during this time, my high school cross country coach began to refer to me as DTJ. It was a reference to the fact that I was Donnie Todd, Junior, and was proudly accepted by me. Once in college, the movie Donnie Darko came out, and of course it was mentioned extensively. I refused to watch the movie until this year, since I was so tired of the whole thing. Its not insulting, but tiresome.

Of course, the movie Donnie Brasco had the same effect. So much as, I learned that a bartender that served me on a regular basis thought my name was Brad Sco. That's right. Finally, in The Big Lebowski, John Goodman's character, Walter repeatedly suggests to Steve Buchemi's character, "Shut the Fuck up, Donnie", or "Donnie, you're out of your element!"

Then, working in the bar, and restaurant business, my initials were fair game, and made for quite a few laughs. DWT = Doesn't Wash Testicles, Drinks Wild Turkey, Donnie Wu Tang, and even DWTeabag. Some get the joke behind DWTeabag, some don't. It is both foul, and hilarious, in my opinion.

All of this comes to mind, since my name has been used with greater importance due to my hospital stays. These include, my initial 2 days when I was in a coma. My first identifying wrist band said that my name was Donald. At times, people assume that this is short for Donnie. This is not the case, not to mention, Donald has six letters, and Donnie has six. So, I don't get it.

One of my current gripes is the results Google provides when entering my full name. Usually, the fourth choice is a mug shot. It is dumb luck that the fellow's name is Donald Wayne Todd, and he was arrested for alcoholic mishaps. Since, almost all of my series are related to granddad's old cough medicine, this is to be expected.

Finally, this week I received a notice from an unknown company addressed to Donnie Wayne Todd, Sr. He has been deceased for nearly eight years. The notice was related to the water supply on my property. I don't own any property.

All of these are petty annoyances, but get under my skin, nonetheless.

Yet, I do have this. In English, Todd refers to a fox. Sly, clever, and sneaky.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Dyadic Life

A Dydadic Life

"The entire substructure of his brain
is eaten away with rum."
-- Hunter Thompson

For a number of years, I crossed your path, and you crossed mine.
We frequented the same places.  We knew the same people.
Maybe we sat next to each other.  Perhaps we spoke.
I cannot recall. 
I had vodka.

Some time later, our introductions came.
You were her friend.  I was his buddy.
I lumped our meeting with the rest.
Just one more face.
I had vodka.

Then, there was the game, and we were the third-wheels.
We made a connection, and smiled, and laughed.
While exchanging numbers, you were pulled away.
You were told to avoid me.  That I was no good.
We would meet again.  No big deal.
I had vodka.

On our next meeting, we tossed a football.
You threw the ball hard, and broke my finger.
That's OK.  I had vodka.

In the fall, we met once more.
You noticed something was wrong.
You told me not to drive.
I listened politely, and motored on.
I had vodka.

Suddenly, there was The Incident.
You refused to believe it was me.
I had aged twenty years, you said.
After the coma, you came to my aid.
I couldn't tell you what I needed.
My mind, and body were all but lost.
It was the vodka.

Months later, you paid me a visit.
I didn't merely survive. 
I was just as I was before The Incident.
One day turned into seven.
Two lifetimes of stories, told in a week.
We laughed so hard it hurt.
"Wait a minute", you said in stitches.
We can have fun while we are sober.
We don't need vodka.

It all seems too perfect.
It cannot be this easy.
Maybe I didn't make it,
and this is our own.
No use for vodka.

There is so much left to do,
with our second chances.

Photo: First Sunset
By:  DWT

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Limitless Sky

Limitless Sky

There has been due concern over this summer's weather.  Excruciating heat, and humidity as thick as a morning fog, are among the complaints we have here in The U.S.  In addition, the seemingly never-ending drought that has its grip on most of the nation's soil has afforded sufficient worry.  However, the late evening, and early morning horizon, never fails to impress a watercolor of artwork for all to see.

Recently, I have found my camera lens, and contact lenses, have been holding fast to the skyline.  It has not been a matter of whether I should capture any photos, but when to stop clicking.  I have always been enamored with sunrise, and sunset, and the vivid colors they provide.

Lately, I have given more attention to the moments preceding the rising sun, and following the settling light.  Dusk and dawn accommodate more than the colors of the rainbow, but a cornucopia of pigments, and blends, that only The Earth's sky can provide.

Cherry, honey, and tangerine hues are to be expected.  Often overlooked are the white, silver, and granite colors melded together.  Salmon, pomegranate, and a kaleidoscope of blue shades are always in the mix, as well.

There are numberless aspects, and perspectives of the canvas of skies on our lovely planet.  Coastal South Carolina provides an abundance of dazzling and elegant panoramas twice per day, and I find myself in awe every single time I gaze.

All in all, looking up is not a bad trait to have.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

41- Indignation Incarnate

Autumn 2011
The nurses are already waking me up, and it is still dark outside.  I can't remember the last time I had any sleep that was worthwhile.  I have accumulated enough hours of sleep deprivation, it should be illegal.  I know its not healthy, although they wake me to check my vitals, and I have to keep riding this merry-go-round until I don't know when.  I am beginning to wonder if they are ever going to let me out of this place.  "You need to show some improvement before we discuss your discharge", they keep telling me.  Discharge.  Bl-eh.

All of my oompa-loompas are in place, dancing around with their needles, washcloths, thermometers, and blood pressure cuffs.  My entourage's questions are raining on me simultaneously, while I am trying to handle my personal cloud, encompassing my brain like a thick morning fog.  At times, it feels like they have performed a lobotomy while I was out, yet on some occasions I am completely frustrated, and grouchy, and I am not a nice person to be around.  Or, I could be over thinking, I guess.

  One of the nurses discovers that I no longer have a catheter.
"Oh, they took the condom-cat off", the caregiver asks?
I technically don't lie, "I don't need one anymore."
"Alrighty, then", she shrugs.

Another nurse approaches my bed and asks,
"What would like for breakfast, honey?"
"Bacon", I blurt out.
"Ha.  No.  You're on a diet.  I just remembered."
"Shit", I mutter.
"Grits, eggs, toast, coffee..."
I cut her off, "I don't drink coffee.  I have been saying that for two weeks, or however long I've been here.  Can I please have sweet tea this time?"
"OK, sweetie.  Its alright.  We'll bring you some iced tea", she says as she crosses a word off from side to side.
"Sweetened", I reiterate.
"I gotch you, baby."

The head nurse lays out my itinerary for the day, in no particular order, as if there is any chance I will remember which scanning, stabbing, sampling, or manipulation they have planned for me.  For every RN, that injects medicine, or collects blood, there is a student who misses the vein.  During that time, the off target assistant conveniently has a superior over their shoulder watching, who seems more like the school bully teasing, "Ha, ha.  You missed it."
"Ha, ha.  That's hilarious", I say sarcastically. 

When my breakfast arrives, my expectations are low, and the food runner places each item in front of me individually.  First, one bowl of grits, that is clumped into six or seven, asteroid-shaped clusters, all on top of what looks like fire ant eggs, is presented to me.  Then, my plate of yellow eggs, with white stripes throughout, that look like miniature rubber chickens, and are about as chewy.  Followed by, my cubed, hunter green gelatin with some kind of fruit floating inside the jiggling nourishment.

To accompany my delicious, and exquisite breakfast in bed is my, "Careful, this is hot", coffee.  Damn it.  It isn't rational that anything should upset me, but it does.  Besides, this steaming cup of Joe could pass for a mug that was used as an impromptu ash tray last night.

"Hey, sorry, but may I please have some sweet tea instead of the coffee", I plea?
"Yes, sir.  I'll run down, and get that for you", she replies.
"Oh, and some cheese for my grits", I add?
"What kind of cheese you need?"
"You know.  Shredded cheese.  Cheddar, maybe", I suggest.
"What's that look like", she asks?
"What?"  I'm confused.
"We've got white cheese, or orange cheese", she says kindly.
I unintentionally smile at her, "Hm.  Orange, please."

As the request comes out of my mouth, the head nurse walks in.
"Oh, no.  He can't have the orange cheese.  He can't have salt", she corrects the assistant.
"Alright, can I have the white, please", I rasp.

Finally, we have reached an agreement, if not an understanding.  I question myself again, because so many bizarre episodes keep occurring, that it has to be me.

When the cheese lady returns, she has forgotten about the tea, but fulfills my request, "white, shredded, cheese".
As I look at it, I pinch some out with my fingers, and sprinkle it back into the ramekin.
"I can't have salt, right", I state.
"That's right.  I'm sorry", she says sincerely.
"No, don't be", I tell her.

Its Parmesan.

Appalachian Sunset 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

40- Combustible Fortitude

Present Day

 "If I have been of service, if I have glimpsed more of the nature and essence of ultimate good, if I am inspired to reach wider horizons of thought and action, if I am at peace with myself, it has been a successful day."  -- Alex Noble


Not too long ago, in Unknowingly Exhumed, I wrote about a forgotten blog that was brought back to my attention.  Below, is one of those postings.  This is where I was at the time.  Each morning, when I would get home from that bartending gig, I typically would have a couple of more hours before I went to sleep. Either to wind down from the adrenaline of the job that night, or just wait for my pulse rate to go down a bit.  This usually led to listening to music, talking a bit to myself, or posting something like this.


December 7, 2007  6:10 a.m.

Hi Senior. Happy Birthday!

     Hi there.  Happy birthday.  Already 58, huh?  Pretty hard to imagine that we got here so fast.  I've been following your footsteps.  Hell, everyone that knows me calls me your full name.  That was to be expected, though.

  Yet another year that we should be celebrating; and we're not.  Such fucking bullshit.  I'm sorry that the marker isn't even right yet, but I'm also thinking you'd be telling me to stop worrying about it.  We can't help it though.

    It still pisses me off that I'm not allowed to introduce you anymore.  However, this past Monday, Dec. 2nd, I almost repeated that shit with our family.  I am just like you.  I just used another one of my lives.  I fell asleep at the wheel - as you did- for the second time in my life.  However, this time, a 2 by 4 came through my windshield and almost took me out.  --I was going 24 as opposed to the 55 you were going.

    I completely totaled the car that you never got to ride in, but I still have my life.  "Don't matter what I got, as long as I got life!" (*I am not sure where this quote is from.  I very well been quoting myself.*)   We do miss you, but you are here.  Donnie Wayne Todd is a name in Charleston, SC, and you know it.

    Everything is not what it could be, but when is it?  I thought for a minute that I hit a new low.  That's not even close.  I've had a series of mistakes to learn from.

    I remember when you were my age, you really focused on getting yourself in shape, and trying to take care of your asshole eldest son in your own way.  --Don't forget, I knew everything.  Yea, right!

    I have met a few companions.   You met a couple.  I just wish you had seen me follow through.

    I started a new job in August.  Within a few days, I went to meet a prospective co-worker.  -- I still remember the very first words.  That's because that's the way MY family taught me.  You all made it so easy to talk to anyone, and figure out who is who right off the rip.  (She's still an amazing friend by the way.)

    Whoever I hug today will be for you Donnie Wayne Todd, Sr.  Feel it!  I know you're short, but get over it.  You were short by the time I was 13.

    Just don't forget to keep feeding me your advice, dreams, and visions of all of us at 409 South Pandora Drive.  Me, you, mom, Tim, Tinker; maybe Sissy, if you want to get real early, and that's just the beginning. (*Tim is my brother, and Tinker and Sissy were two dogs from my childhood.*)

    I'm ranting.  I miss you.

    Help me tell them all to stop sweating the small stuff, and watch whats going on.  You never know if you're not going to be able to later...

D. W. T.
December 7, 2007  6:10 a.m.


When I wrote this, there is no way I could ever imagined that I would end up on my bedroom floor, almost five years later, bleeding to death.  Yet, I hadn't changed much, the amount of alcohol it took to get me drunk had increased remarkably.
This all comes back to what I just wrote a few days ago in The Long Chat -2, comparing the ages we both were, when events like these went down.

My birthday is June 16, which occasionally falls on Father's Day.  This weekend has been an extra crunch on my mind, and psyche.  Yes, I did quit drinking, but not that long, ago.  On October 17, 2011, I was unknowingly on my bedroom floor for the second day.  I was sent home with my mother, and stepfather in November to die.

Thank God, I survived, yet, this weekend, I have a undercurrent of fear, and emotion, and worry about dying for the first time since February.  I am really not sure if I would have been found yesterday, if I my physical collapse was this weekend, and not last fall.

It would have been assumed, that I was just partying on my birthday, if I didn't answer all of the loving posts I received, yesterday.  Its human nature, and it would have been a correct assumption. 

Living life as if it is your last day is a hard sell.  I am starting to think that unless one is threatened by Death, they never will have the perception that I have.

For me, this was not just any other weekend, however my point of view is unique to myself.
It is a painful reality that all things have returned to the typical way of living.
Work, school, shopping, laundry, children, showers, sleeping, and calling your father
merely because it is Father's Day. 

If that is too big a drag,
then there is Facebook.

My mind is a firestorm, run wild,
and there is plenty of fuel left to burn.
Photo:  Carolina Wild
By:  DWT

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Nil Communication

Nil Communication

"Mr. Watson, come here -- I want to see you."

-- Alexander Graham Bell makes the first telephone call on March 10, 1876. He was speaking to his assistant in the next room.


Just imagine what auto correct could do with this.
That first phone call set a precedent in misunderstanding words.
Mr. Watson's journal says that the first words were,
"Mr. Watson, come here, I want you."

That first, simple statement was mixed up in its transition
from sound to paper.

The sound of a voice, can mean something different,
when not heard.

39- The Long Chat- Part -2

Autumn 2011

“Happy,” I muttered, trying to pin the word down. But it is one of those words like Love, that I never quite understood. Most people who deal in words don’t have much faith in them and I am no exception—especially the big ones like Happy and Love and Honest and Strong. They are too elusive and far too relative when you compare them to sharp, mean little words like Punk and Cheap and Phony. I feel at home with these, because they’re scrawny and easy to pin, but the big ones are tough, and it takes either a priest or a fool to use them with any confidence. 

-- Hunter Stockton Thompson in "The Rum Diary"

My friendly nurse who loaned me the Thompson novel is still listening.  At least, she seems to be.  I continue to speak incessantly, answering her short questions with long winded descriptions of my pathways that led me to this moment.  I apologize repeatedly telling her, "I'm sorry, I'm talking your ear off", simultaneously branching to the next tangent of an already in-congruent flow of thought. 

I am delusional because I have not seen my reflection, yet, and I have no intention of catching a glimpse of myself anytime soon.  I transition into how I had three solid relationships with three different women.  All of them, five years each, and proof that I can be stable enough to tolerate.  This is a far-fetched argument for any semblance of emotional investment that lasts with me.  It is apparent that vodka was sure to take care of any doubts that I may have had about being single.  Faced with the choice of marriage, or moving on alone, I chose the latter without exception.

I respond to her questions referring to any family history of alcoholism, or what effect I thought it had on me.  My grandfather, on Dad's side died when he was 58 years old, and I had no clue how serious the word dialysis was, but there was a machine next to his bed. I was 5 years old.  He always rested on his bed in the living room, and sometimes with me on the couch.  His breath smelled just like my fathers.

I recount sitting in the back of our car, after seeing Grandpa sleeping amongst flowers, and tears.  I was between my father and uncle because they never let anyone see them smoke.  They had miniature clear bottles, with golden corn colored beer.  The foamy bubbles stuck to the bottle's neck, that had a red X that referred to what time it was.  It didn't taste good to me. 

I fast forward to my father's sudden death brought upon him in a single car accident, although I am still not convinced that he was not forced into the culvert by his maladjusted wife, or one of her family members.  I admit I made a fateful calculation during my father's funeral that could lead to my demise.

Grandpa died when Dad was 29 years old, and I was 30 years old when my father was ripped away from us.  I wondered if my grandfather's early death led to my father's failed battle with alcoholic, and emotional dependence.  I missed his last attempt to call me early in the afternoon.  I was already in the bar, and I didn't hear my phone.  I called him back, and left a message, returning to the full day off, and time for all day drinking that bled into the early morning.  

I was still loaded heavily with red wine, when my girlfriend woke me with monumental tears.  She could barely speak through the sobs to tell startles me, "Donnie!  You're father is gone!"  In an instant, I am tuned in, to a reality that could not be.  By the end of the day, I am at a long time friends house, and his family is doing their best to comfort a man who continuously falls to his knees.

I never sobered up from the night before, and I was firing anything I could into my bloodstream.  
I remind the nurse that I was not always like this, that I really did have a solid childhood.
I don't have a single complaint about growing up.
My parents always pushed my brother, and I towards success.

We are jostled out of my narration by her phone.

"I need to go help someone, and grab your medicine", she says.
"I want to hear more of this when I get back, though."
"No, you don't.  You are just humoring me, but thank you", I tell her.
She assures me she wants to hear more, and stops in the doorway.  She snaps a full 180 degrees, like a Drill Sergeant, and aims her finger right index finger at me.

She is tapping her right toes rapidly when her pointer demands,
"Don't.  Fall. Asleep.  Don't even think about it."

She just made me realize how sleepy I am.  The Attivan, and Oxycodone are having their way with me, again.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

38- The Long Chat Part- 1

Autumn 2011

I am caught red handed.  I am trying to get out of the bed on my own.  I am not supposed to do that, but damn I have to pee.  With luck, it is my personal Nightingale that catches me with my left, big toe on the tile.  She gives me a "What are you doing look?"

"I'm sorry", I say.  "I am going to have to do this by myself at some point."
"I understand that, but you could fall, and I would be in serious trouble."
"You're right", I concede.  "Can you help me then?  I've made it this far."
"OK.  Hold on a second", she says, as she rolls over my coat rack of IVs. "This has to come with you."
"Gotcha", finally.

I slide down the side of the bed, and my hospital gown is in the way, as usual.  It slides up quickly, as if it is wired to the ceiling.  Here I am, again.  Take a gander, and feel sorry for me.  I don't care.  
When I get upright, and on my feet, I am a solid foot taller than the nurse.  She looks up at me, and says, "Wow, you're tall".
"No, you are short, and so is that bed.  Man, I need a longer bed."

Saturday, June 9, 2012


Everything says this is what you like.
Inside and out, and every attribute.
All the unique seeds that you seek.
Here wrapped in one.

You come by, and stay for a moment
on the fence. Just out of reach, you stare.
I peak your interest, but then you fly away.
You have a nest to tend to.

Be careful in the forest.
You may be the prey.

At times, I am surrounded by
many songs, and unsought showoffs.
They can be pleasant, and a chore...
they rely on me for comfort.

I may appear to be
hanging by a string.
Yet, if you study closely,
I am anchored, grounded.

I have time to wait, after all.

Raider’s Luck

Raider's Luck

One day, out of the blue, someone said,
"Donnie, we should take that dog from Grandma."
My live-in girlfriend at the time was suggesting this.
"What dog", I ask her.
"The stray dog that she found a couple of weeks ago."
Hm. I guess this is not out of the blue. Not sure, now.

"I don't think we should", I say.
"Well, Grandma is coming this weekend,
so we can meet Raider."

With that, the name of my first dog was Raider,
and it didn't take me long to fall in love with her.
She was the best you could ask for. She was easily trained,
rarely barked, and was friendly as any pretty dog could be.

A few years later, the same gf told me that
the humane society telethon was coming up.
Her brother was running it, and that meant we were volunteering.

It was for a good cause, so why not?
We just have to promise each other,
No Dog.

There were two floors at the television studio,
and, of course, the programming was showing, throughout.
I was downstairs, and my gf was upstairs, when a dog caught
my eye on the television. I thought, "Wow, that dog looks like Raider."

I was really excited, and started to run up the stairs.
My gf was running down at the same time, and we
met at the switchback. In unison, we said,
"Yeah, I saw her, too."

I tried to say no, and be the strong one, but I couldn't.
She was in the lap of a woman answering the phones.
The poor dog was shaking, and scared.

So, my second dog was named Lucky.
She was Lucky that I took her home.

We weren't quite sure how the dogs would
react to each other, but I had my camera ready.

The picture in the center of the collage is Lucky.
Raider is the larger dog, with the goatee, and red collar.
The dog that is cutting her eyes at me in most of the pictures.
She got over it quickly.

They truly were my best friends.

Not So Fast

Not So Fast

Sometimes, I am mesmerized and drawn to beauty.
Everything is cool. She has her space, I have mine.
Yet, I let myself get too close, and get wrapped up.
I'm afraid, and she seems too clingy.
It begins to frighten me.

So, I run.

Friday, June 8, 2012

37- Excess Plumbing

Autumn 2011

Its the middle of the night the next time I am awakened.  To my relief, the girl ripping the Velcro on my blood pressure cuff is my favorite nurse.  The one that loaned me the Thompson book.  The brunette shorty who is nice to me, and smiles when she speaks.  My friend, who I have grown a bit of a crush on, that probably just feels sorry for me.  She is young, and her career choice has not made her bitter, yet.  She usually visits me at night, and I think of The Florence Nightingale Effect.  I wonder if there is a Betty Ford Effect.

While she is away, collecting medicines and checking on other patients, I begin to feel restless again.  The blankets feel heavy, and I can't move around much.  I squirm uncomfortably, but I keep snagging the blankets on the bothersome catheter.  I've had enough of it, and I don't need it.  They have still been using the 'condom catheter' on me, so its not like I'm pulling one out.  Not this time.

Thursday, June 7, 2012



Although, I was invited to Cowbird only a month ago, I have become emotionally involved. Cowbird is no teenage crush. Whether it is the wordiness of my stories, or my overall time spent here, my self-government is ever changing. My constant use of pinky back-spacing could very well lead to some sort of repetitive stress trauma.

In my want to investigate where every love comes from, and all the new perspectives I can gain, my inbox is beginning to be overrun. When I see a new name, I want to see what you are up to. Its as if I'm trying to stop a levee break with a sponge. As soon as I think I am getting somewhere, a new day is here, and the flood gates are still open.

I have fessed up to a lot of things lately, but I am not a Cowbird addict. This has to be passion, and not just my addictive persona coming through. Right? Right. Cowbird has come to me with such perfect timing, I feel blessed. I appreciate every moment of my time here, and all that you share with me.

Cowbird is just beginning,
and I'm about as green as they come.


The boy in the blue shorts is my younger brother.
Its 25 years ago, but he is still a go-getter.