ME: “You don’t know what I’ve been through!”


ME: “First, my daughter was coming from Atlanta to help me with speaking out at the Court House in Columbus about the disability funding settlement and someone ran into her and she totalled her car the night before she left for the airport to fly to see me.  She caught the plane the next morning, however, still bruised from the wreck,  drove  2 hours in another car to my place and the next day she drove another hour to pick up her little sister from a state facility to spend the night with us. She had set up a Christmas tree for her little sister to decorate, but turns out the little one (now 48) was too tired and slept 15 hours.  Upon taking her back the next day they stopped at Bob Evans and then saw Frozen Two. Well, I stayed home, of course. What did you expect at 84?

“Afterwards we went to an eatery with handmade jewelry on its walls but two women were sitting under the showcase of the necklaces we were interested in, so we waited for them to leave. And waited. They didn’t leave til closing.

“Meanwhile we were sorry we had left our Boggle at home so in desperation we made one up, using an algorithm. She still beat me.

“The next day I had a funeral to attend at 3 pm, and afterwards we rushed the hour long drive, together this time, to my youngest daughter’s  state facility to attend a Christmas Party,  where many good folks, including my eldest daughter,  caught an intestinal  virus.  I was proud it skipped over me, until the next day, in Court. After 2 hours sitting in a packed court room in Columbus,  it struck.  I had still not testified, if that’s the right name for it.

“I spent the next hour ensconced you-know-where and my eldest daughter testified for the family. Plans were for her to catch a plane back to Atlanta after Court and for me to make the 2-hour journey home on the GO-Bus.

“Well, you can imagine a 2-hour bus ride while being vulnerable to an intestinal attack.  I had been  stuck in a booth at the Court House in Columbus and my daughter’s plane for Atlanta was to fly away a little more than 4 hours later.  So, she pointed the car back to my place and drove the full speed limit. When we arrived she didn’t bother to get out, and we couldn’t even hug because I was virulent. (I had been sitting on an opened Time magazine during the entire dash home).

“The next day I ate a banana and applesauce and the day after I figured I could go back to eating regular. Wrong. Another round of intestinal upset. In the meantime my Spectrum wasn’t working, my cell phone’s battery was dead, my new computer hadn’t been fully installed, I had to make a visitor stand yards away from me, and I fell twice rushing out of bed for my landline.  And I guess it’s kinda my anniversary—been retired 20 years  and one side of my fanny is twice the size of the other because of the fall.  I guess it’s what I deserve for wasting that 20 years.”

CP:  “You’re right, but think about your eldest daughter, would you?…And look out the window at the lovely white snowflakes falling onto our winter wonderland…”

ME: “Yes, but my Spectrum still doesn’t work, my cell phone’s still dead, and I can’t post this on my blog…”

CP:  “You sound like a yes-butter to me.”

P.S. The hearing was in opposition to kicking people out of institutions.  One woman who spoke said both her parents had Alzheimers and she was caring for them at home.  When she asked for a placement for them she was put on a 10-year waiting list.

About Nan Mykel

I used to think I would be a child prodigy, but then I got old. Formerly I had fantasies of rubbing elbows with cultural and academic leaders but that did not come to pass because I did not become a cultural or academic leader or any other kind of leader, for that matter. I am not even an "Alpha Dog," a term learned from a friend who had to become "Alpha Dog" in order to influence her own pet. (When gazes lock, she never looks away.) For years I expected to become a published author, but in passing I could not avoid the fact that I had little to contribute to the world's bulging dumpsters. I'm embarrassed to report that I also considered my primary process artistic productions powerful, rather than mildly neurotic. Which is not to say that I disrespect myself, only that I am beginning to doubt my potential for making a mark on the world. If I focus on strict self discipline I may be able to keep my garbage removed on a weekly basis, to keep the kitty box changed, the clothes cleaned, the dog watered, fed and walked, but that just catches me up to the starting mark again. When writing I physically grapple with words, wrestling them from their indifference into attempted chunks of awareness. I sit heavily on my chair; I breathe in artificially cooled air; my ear drums note the tap tap of the keyboard and the steady uninterrupted sound of the air conditioner, What is that sound? The roar of the ocean from 30 yards away...Inside, my thoughts are are balls in an electronic game machine, bouncing hither and yon from lever to lever. I am a little grim and intent until I recall a dream related by a black man in the prison where I once worked. He said that when he was a small boy, back home, he dreamed he was standing on his front porch pissing, and that he suddenly found himself pissing stars...
This entry was posted in A mixed bag, Crosspatch and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Rivera says:

    Ummm… “Like” (?????)
    Take a few days off… get some much deserved & needed rest.
    Be well…!!

    Liked by 1 person

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