Thursday, August 26, 2004

Breathe

The universe was trying to send me a message today. I found myself in traffic, feeling as though I would never get done all I needed and wanted to get done, amplified by the knowledge that tomorrow will be a total loss (more on that later). The little white car in front of me had a vanity license plate that said...

BREATHE

I was impressed. Impressed that I really needed to hear that right then. Impressed that someone plunked down the $50 for a custom plate and chose to put out such a positive message for others. BREATHE. And so I did.

Surreal moment #2 happened on the return trip as a bus passed by in the opposing lane. It had a billboard along its side that said, "You have the right to be you." Or something like that. It was selling identity theft insurance. You know how they say goatees are the new mullets? Well, I say "identity theft insurance" is the new bomb shelter. Scare tactics can make some buy it, but when the chips are down, will it really help? In any case, apparently I have the right to be me. BREATHE.

But the weird moment of the day award goes to Stephan, who makes me laugh often to where I can't breathe. Last weekend he made a pilgrimage with Craig to the newly discovered hardware store nearby. And yea, they cast awed gazes upon the many wares upon display and proclaimed their joy at such a find, and fear that the wives would change the locks if they purchased all that they wished. Verily, it was so. Stephan made a single, reserved purchase of a small vernier caliper, used to make precise measurements. Unbeknownst to me, the new caliper held the place of honor, bedside, so as to be last gazed upon at night and first in the morning. I know this now because I was typing away on my computer, long after all decent folk are asleep (and after some are awake again), when Stephan's alarm clock went off. He shut it off and I heard him "mumph!" and turn over. OK. I give it 10 minutes, then go check to see if he really needs to be up yet. I see him, sitting up, carefully measuring the tip of a mechanical pencil with the shiny new vernier caliper.

"What are you doing?" I ask.
"Just checking if the lead is really .7 millimeters."
"What?"
"You know, they say it's .7, but I thought I would..."
"First thing in the morning?"
"Well, I just want to measure and see."
"If it really is .7, as advertised?"
"Yeah."
"Before you have even gotten out of bed?"
"Uhh... yeah."
Silence, only broken by my snorting laughter.
"So, is it?"
"Is it what?"
".7?"
"Oh, yeah. It is."
I tried to say something like, well, that's good then, but I found I could not talk and laugh uncontrollably at the same time.

Tomorrow will be interesting, if my last dental appointment is any indication. For those of you who have not heard this yet, I have had to see a specialist because of this one tooth that won't go numb. So this dentist is a specialist in "problem cases" (always an apt description of yours truly) and can administer serious anesthesia. He decides to give me halcion. He also gives me a brief and colorful history of halcion along with the usual warnings about operating heavy machinery. Halcion came out as the new wonder sleeping pill to replace those pesky addictive drugs, like valium. I am sure there was the usual extensive testing - 3 college freshmen (all male) and six hamsters - and then the beta test of wide release to the public. And it was great! People slept! Or, thought they did. Until one day a guy went berzerk and shot a bunch of coworkers. Turns out halcion is the source of the phrase "go postal." Halcion creates temporary amnesia. So if you are sleepy already, yep, you go to sleep. But if you are not sleepy, you walk around, do the laundry, regrout the tile, and eventually pass out. In the morning you have no memory of anything, are probably confused by the fresh clean grout, and you assume you slept all night. After a few nights of not actually sleeping, you go insane (legally, and in truth). So, the dentist gave me halcion because a big part of experiencing pain is the memory of having been in pain a moment ago and anticipating pain to come. Halcion wipes the slate clean. Very very clean. Last time I had no memory after sitting in the waiting room until that night. On our way home, somewhere on the 520, our truck's accelerator pedal fell off. Oh yes. FELL. OFF. Stephan pulled out of traffic and called a tow truck. We rode in the tow truck to the dealer. Memorable, right? The only memory I have of any of this is the doughnut Stephan brought me at the dealership. It was plain with chocolate frosting on top and I was soooo happy to see it. Then, nothing until I woke up that evening at home.

Tomorrow I go back to this dentist. More halcion. No Friday for me! I will try to remember to BREATHE.

5 Comments:

At August 27, 2004 at 12:42 PM, Blogger Rachel said...

Lilly,
I guess this blog means your Dad and I shouldn't wait for your cards and phone calls to find out what's up with you and Stephan.
Keep on breathing(oooooooohhhhmmmmm)...and keep writing!
Love, Rachel

 
At August 27, 2004 at 4:06 PM, Blogger Kim said...

Well now,

That halcion stuff works! I can attest to it as I was able to have a great convo with your husband about your experience today. And you, uhm, are still sleeping...

Instead of those AWOL things in the news lately, maybe we should have Halcion bars? Kinda like oxygen bars with a kick. And let us know if this leaves you with a hangover... I need to submit the papers for the proper clinical trial at the local university so I need to be aware of possible outcomes so I am not surprised. If you wake up, for instance, and have this need to stand on your roof and clean gutters and sing drinking songs in Esperanto, let me know. Much appreciated... :-)

Kim

 
At September 10, 2004 at 10:54 AM, Blogger Sandi said...

Thank you for your insight on ADHD. You're probably right...

 
At October 23, 2004 at 1:13 PM, Blogger Robin said...

Hi Lilly,
Just reading some of your previous stuff to catch up.
When I had my foot surgery many years ago I got some IV drug that was lovely. Not sure what it was but I guess I was awake for the surgery but couldn't remember it. How creepy.
So here's the doctor at the beginning of the surgery tapping on my foot, "Can you feel this?" he asked."YES!" I answered. So he said we would wait a while longer. A few seconds (?????) later I said,"I still feel that! Don't cut me open yet!!!!" He laughed and said, "I'm done." OH! Hmmmmm....ok then!
Then the staff proceded to tell me I talked through the entire surgery and had them all laughing. Oh crap! What the hell did I say? Damn drugs!!

 
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