I had lunch in Oakland today. I took the bus there, and I walked home. As I walked home, I thought about all of the other times I made that walk, most of which were when Bob was in Presbyterian Hospital having open heart surgery back in the fall of 2000 (for some reason I didn't have a car then - I don't remember why or what happened to it).
Sharing these little glimpses of Bob is not about exorcizing demons ... it's more like setting small birds or insects free.
At any rate, I just got home from the hospital. My Grandmother has been there for a little over a week now, and she's been on a ventilator for a little more than a day. Knowing about it was one thing; seeing it was another. That she has all of these tubes and gizmos, and that she can't speak... Feeding tube down her nose, IVs running everywhere ... just awful. She's tiny - under 5 feet and under 100 lbs on a good day - but she just looks so unbelievably small with all that stuff coming out of her. It was like The Count of Monte Christo, and the old man who could only communicate with his eyes (I haven't read it since 7th grade or so, so forgive me if I get it wrong). She kept furrowing her brow and I could tell she was upset about something, only it was like trying to read a language that I never learned. It was so frustrating and awful that I barely stayed 20 minutes, and I felt like a heel for it.
Last night my Mother and I had a fairly long discussion on a single morbid topic: Is it worse for it to be sudden and unexpected and horrible, or to be long and drawn-out and horrible?
What does everyone else think?
I was having a conversation with someone today about which one of us would outlive the other one, and, by extension, about how the first one to go would die (this was sparked by my assertion that I always knew I would outlive Bob by a lot, although I always expected he would die by overdose, or, barring that, that something would go wrong with his mechanical heart valve. Shows how much I know). Anybody out there have any sense of when I'm going to die? When you're going to die? My friend Courtney is sure she's going to drown (because she dreams about drowning a lot, apparently). I always wanted to go by overdose, but I'm not sure that's how it will happen.
Ah, opiates ...