Kevin's Dead Cat

After surgery sliced off an entire tumor and 1/3 of my tongue, plus six weeks of radiation therapy, I've been re-learning how to eat, drink, and talk with my newly re-constructed tongue and coping with side effects. But the cancer came back and I don't know what's going to happen next.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

I don't want life to imitate art. I want life to be art.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

If ever there was a worst morning...

I don't know if it was forgetting to take the 30mg morphine pills this morning, being out and about a week after chemo, or just being disoriented from lack of rest, but I nearly didn't, couldn't recognize myself in the mirror or in my own mind today.

I had to get new contact lenses re-filled, so it was an a.m. trip to Kaiser with James. I know I kept him up some last night with my trache, but I swear I tried to stay as still as possible. Having to look at myself in the mirror practically all morning to get the lenses and stuff was unnerving. As tiny as I was at the wedding, I felt that this is how I would look days past embalming. And since my tongue has swollen vertically, there's an unnatural elongation to my jaw as well.

I know this entry is going to be every variety of morbid. But I can't help how all this is making me feel. I'm also afraid that it's time to have that feeding tube installed as well. Swallowing solid food isn't getting any easier. Ingesting the multi-vitamin and herbal remedy pills have become its own meditation exercise. But between the phlegm from the trache and my tongue just not cooperating, it may be time to stick that tube right in my stomach... and I believe we all know what comes after that.

James is doing some much needed laundry, and I'm all alone in the apartment. I should call someone over. I shouldn't be alone right now. Considering how much money we just plopped down for eyecare this morning, I really have no business thinking what I'm thinking. God knows there's enough morphine lying around to do the trick in a matter of minutes. But it would be so rude to have James find me that way after the morning I put him through.

I love him so much. The only thing that would kill me more would be the certainty that we were cursed with an afterlife, and that I would have to endure what my suicide would do to him (remember, I'm still pissed off at Mark for offing himself 15 years ago). Then again, James has always been a more forgiving person than me. Besides, I didn't marry James so he could help me die.

This entire entry doesn't even feel like me. I've never talked about my own suicide before. Ever since I saw it, I've always hoped the afterlife would resemble that Robin Williams movie, "What Dreams May Come" where the wife poisons herself after her kids and husband die in separate car accidents. Then you could be whoever you wanted to be, doing whatever you wanted to do, in whatever world your mind could create.

I would love to start over like that. Leave all the pain behind, and just surround myself with beauty, and memories of the people I love. I may even hang out with Mark and Flagg. But somehow, I know the afterlife is going to be nothing like that for a suicide.

In a way, there is a kind of benchmark feel to the day. Beyond this point, you are no longer living for yourself alone... act accordingly. But to be brave, really brave enough to face the downward spiral with grace? That can't be for anyone but the one who matters most in your heart. I guess suicide isn't so much about letting someone else off the hook, as much as hoping they'll allow you this one last, selfish act.

But they never do. Besides, what's to be said about a lesser writer who kills herself the same year that H.S. Thompson does?


Blogger Pat Saperstein said...

I know it's hard right now, but I'm amazed and impressed at how you still find small moments of beauty in each day. I hope you can be at peace with whatever path you choose right now, and I know your husband would understand whatever you think is best. I don't know you, but I'm right over here in Silver Lake, reading your posts and wishing things were better for you.

June 15, 2005 1:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep writing Laura!
Write until your fingers want to fall off!
You have a gift with words, a gift you can give to yourself and James and all of us unknown-to-you.

June 15, 2005 8:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Tao - keep writing! Maybe you can start writing short stories to keep you inspired. Don't give up Laura.

June 16, 2005 2:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laura, I don't know you but I've been reading your posts and I am very much inspired by you. You have a way with words and an incredible ability to write about your life and those you love. Stay strong!

June 16, 2005 1:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ignore that. Vegetarians are beautiful people. Just a tad different.
See you soon.

June 16, 2005 4:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shop online today. Forget driving to the mall when you can just click the mouse and order from your favorite store. No traffic to deal with

January 10, 2006 5:41 AM  

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