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Thursday, March 22, 2012

In Memory of Dorothy Baron Kaplan

She was my maternal grandmother, but she was so much more. For over four score and eight years, she brightened the lives of everyone fortunate enough to know her. Yesterday, my sister's father commented, "They don't make 'em like that any more. They broke the mold when they made Dorothy." He was absolutely right.

Dorothy lived a full and amazing life, the kind I might dream of living. She was always a force, a viable presence wherever she was. I could go on about her accomplishments, her physical legacy, but I think I would be missing much of what is of the essence here.

Dorothy was a force because of the way she affected the people who where fortunate to love her, know her and to be loved by her. No one could every deny her ferocity, her bark, and her insistence on control, but in essence, she was the embodiment of love.

When I went to sit by her bedside yesterday to say goodbye, there was evidence everywhere of just how much Dorothy is, and was loved. All of her close, local family took turns huddled in her room to speak to her as she drifted away. We stroked her hands and forehead, they were so soft. Even in her advanced eighties, grandma had beautiful skin-- so smooth and nearly unwrinkled. Even while struggling to breathe, lying in bed, she was beautiful. She was always beautiful to me.

Family and friends called and we held the phone to her ear, even as she slept. We could tell she heard their words because her face and body reacted in the embrace of their loving words. She smiled when my little (ok, younger) brother called. As I looked around at the faces of Dortothy's loved ones, I could only think, "should we all be this lucky to find and know so much love in our lives. Dorothy was love.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Slightly bitter

As I stare at the pile of ten, huge prednisone stacked up in front of me, a favorite phrase of one of my students comes to mind, "Fuck my life." Pardon my French, I'm just quoting and thinking, "little girl, you have no idea."

The truth is, none of us really have any idea. I'm feeling sorry for myself because I have been flared for almost two weeks, and the only apparent solution at this point is a massive dose of steroids, but my more rational mind knows that it could be much worse. Still, I am having myself a pity party and my readers (at least those who can relate) are invited.

Ever taken 500 miligrams of prednisone a day? Then you know. I don't even think that a Solumedrol user can fully relate. This is one of the most disgusting ways of medicating ever invented. I find that Copaxone injections have nothing on the Prednisone. The pills are huge, they taste terrible, they hurt your stomach, rob you of sleep and make you insane.

When I do take steroids, I always must weigh the lesser of the evils, my symptoms or the disgusting chore that is steroids. I always wait as long as possible before giving in. If I didn't need to work or pay bills, I would continue to try sleeping this off, but I have already been in bed for 3 days, and I think it is time to take steps so I can go back to work (it's overrated but so is eviction).

End of pity party, bottoms up, here goes the first of ten.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Sick and tired of feeling sick and tired

I guess the title says it all. Really I can't come complain (comes with the territory) but this year I have been spoiled. Up until January, my health was almost spotless for a very long time. Now, like every one else, I have actually been getting sick again.

I got sick and had to call in at the last minute in January. In February, I got a bad cough and cold that lasted over two weeks, and last week I was rather flared. Basically, everything just seemed to be painful and inflamed. I slept most of it off, but I still keep getting twinges. For me, these seems to manifest in extreme, nauseating exhaustion. Needless to say, I am ready for the last of this to pass. I am blaming the fickle weather (gotta blame someone).