Monday, May 22, 2006

5.22.06b, Meeting Doctor Melfi & Double Injustice

Meeting Doctor Melfi & Double Injustice

Granted, I do not think of this situation, my situation, my stepping into the Big Casino as they might say in Soprano-land, as one having anything to do with justice. That means both from the positive and negative sides, it’s not just, it’s not unjust — to imply it as either is to impute a higher power to the workings of the universe and I stepped past that a long time ago. (But remind me to tell you the chaplain story at some point. G -- I haven’t told you this yet but when I went to see my own Dr. Melfi [the shrink, if anyone’s slow on the draw today] today, she said, while looking at some report-like records, “Oh, so I see you’ve spoken with our chaplain.”!! Can you believe this? Suddenly I have visions of Bush, Cheney, and the other national insecurity monkey boys giving SCCA chaplains instructions in privacy invasion, deception, and spiritual coercion. Apparently “my nurse” requested the chaplain stop by. Hm. Something fishy in Seattle.) Point is, I’m dealing not with justice in or out, it’s just not an issue thereof. Still, I was stuck for a title. What you gonna do?

Her actual name is Sylvie (sp? Sylvy? any ideas?), Dr. A, and fortunately she has no hair stuck in any orifice, as it were, about titles. Today’s meeting was essentially uneventful, just preliminary questions about demography, background, some medical clarifications, the basics of my “diagnosis experience” — i.e., the moment I “found out” (another blog topic, another day?) — and similar groundwork items. One point she made, thus the title above, that rang true and has been rattling around my brain a bit today is that my specific case involves a double diagnosis, or rather double shock. She may have used the word “injustice,” or it could be a screen memory. Does it matter which? Being told you have cancer is part one; being told you have an especially unfriendly type is part two. Hearing this helped, for whatever reason, and it partially explains why I get internally pissed off when some people work at being empathetic with me by discussing the Cancer of a person they know, usually in an inspirational way, but in almost every case it’s a cancer that has, let’s say, an 80 percent survival rate. I want to respond, “Well, yeah, technically we both have cancer, but that’s like cancer with training wheels.” Yes, it’s upsetting. Yes, my thoughts might be rude — at least I keep them to myself. The finality involved with this metastatic pancreatic cancer however is unavoidably hard. Just sharing.

On an entirely different note, here’s a poem for today, one from me, . . . makes me feel like Garison Keeler when I write that, yeck. . . . and I managed to find something at least tangentially related. If I post any more, poem related to the Big Casino will soon exhaust themselves. Poetic fatigue. Rhythmic anemia.


“The Kissing Grandmother”

His mother, my grandmother, locked in place
now only by memory and funerary conversation,
discomfiting exchanges between father and son,
Do not ever let me end up like that,” he says,

a reminder from my father, whose mother,
now finished slowly clawing her way out
of life from — or into — painfully smooth oblivion,
is visiting coals of fire upon my head,

twenty-one years and yet no preparation, to
watch forgetfulness tread with heavy boots
across her mind, footprints left behind,
once-known names, gadgets, recent associations

long linoleum halls, septic-urine smells,
three-day-old shit caked under her fingernails,
false teeth forgotten in a glass, lipless kisses, reading
poetry to her, she will say my name just once again.

We all knew her as the Kissing Grandma —
and with her last kiss she says my name too then
Get the hell out of here!” she says. So much for “Gerontion.”
I walk the seamless hall seeing only her empty eyes,

to holiday barbecues, too much food, family, and house,
handing my father “that thingamajig, wou’d’ya” then sitting
alone I see, already, that he’s lost the word for “plug”
and it’s just about time to pull.

4 comments:

spacely said...

hey spot tricia...remember who loves you every minute every day..all of sending good vibes.
I'm sorry you had a bad day yesterday but hopefully today will be a good day you are the best!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

spacely said...

Obviously after I read my blog comment i see I can't put a stinking sentence together or spell it must be because it is my 21st anniversary today. Can you believe I've put up the keretinsky for that many years .... just kidding. Keep the verticle smile:)

Slarry said...

WOW-- Two Dr. Malfie's / Melfi ???? !! Well, actually, three. : )
Many thoughts and well wishes sent your way yesterday and today. Therapy is tough-- and I do remember the pact we made about "the plug" and "he" has, unfortunately lost that word. Doesn't seem fair, really.

Great poem, by the way. Actually one of your best writings.
We are getting prepared and have already started packing for our trip to see and be with you. Remember, anywhere you want to go and anything you want to do. We are easy. Well, not like that. : )

Happy Anniversary Stace/Spacely.

DZD our thoughts are with you, as is our love.
Mr. Jones, when you are up for it , I will want to go into more depth and detail regarding the shrink experience-- if you want to. Sounds like she is at least empathetic --- and I hope it helps.
To Ms. G., thanks for your support of Mr. Jones. We will be there soon and can't wait to meet you.
Spot, remember to breath ..... and that there are people from all over the world, interested, invested and cheering you on. People who love and care for you. Hope you can feel it. Can you feel it?
Love you more than words can express--- and wish I could take away this "double whammy"-- dammit. Hopefully, more people understand then their unconscience insensitive sayings suggest. Perhaps they are too caught up in their own fears.... whatever, it doesn't matter. There are plenty of other people who do "get it" and can appreciate the difference, and are here for you, in every sense.
You are HUGE, my brother-- courageous and strong.

In our little corner of Zion, we remain in awe of you.
IV infusion today-- take a good book, a good friend, and take a big fat nap. Pleasant and sweet dreams. We will be their "in spirit." : )
Love, as always,
Sheri and Steph

Mr. Jones said...

Spacey: Bad day yesterday? Did I have a bad day? We must have our wires crossed, I don't remember posting on a day like that, not recently. Hm. Happy anniversary, btw!

-Mr. J.