Sunday, September 27, 2009

It's a beautiful fall day.

I was on Facebook a moment ago, and noted a comment on my friend Jeanne's status by a local writer. I haven't actually read any of this author's fictions, though I've certainly heard of them. I also dated her brother a couple of times; for this reason more than any other, I clicked the author's name and started scrolling through her Friends list. I figure her brother will be there somewhere -- a very nice man, married now I know, probably kids. Amusingly enough, this turned into an exercise in What a Small Town, or Just How Many Guys DID I Date in College? I found (between the A's and J's alone) not one but TWO other fellas I also dated -- one just a couple of times, like the brother -- and the other one a man I actually lived with and dated for years. No, I will not Friend any of these men -- there are zero reasons to do so -- and yet. I am tempted, for egotistical and administrative reasons, to go BACK to this list and finish up the alphabet. Just to see, you know? And maybe, in a very backhanded way, it's a kind of compliment -- the author being an intelligent and not unattractive brunette. Maybe I can claim a pathetic shadow of her fame, like the groupie girl who sleeps with the tour manager (not even the band.)

In other news, there is...not much news, yet, about Dean.

I spent half a day there Friday, at his wife's request, sitting by his side while she attended to some really pressing duties to herself and their child. She has been with him nearly non-stop, and has passed the point of exhaustion. I won't say how he looked, or what his condition was then, since this is a blog and I've probably divulged too much. I just sat and held his hand for hours, and sang to him, and read out loud a little and prayed a little. He surfaced a few times and seemed almost to focus on me, the nurse said she was sure he could hear me -- and I know he tracks who is in and out of his room to a degree, though he is not allowed many visitors. He gets very upset if he knows his wife has to leave for a time. After several hours she returned, and rested a little before resuming her vigil. I got her and the kid some lunch, and then went to work. I'm glad I could help. Hospitals and sick people aren't a problem for me in terms of proximity, though it's hard not to cry when you see someone you love completely dependent on machines for survival. He looks much better than my father did though. Dean is in there, he's trying to come back, trying to find level. It's staggering how much effort it must take for him to simply breathe right now.

It's a beautiful fall day. How much time will he have lost, when he finally awakes? Every few hours the nurse yelled into his ear: "Mr. ____, today is Friday the 25th of September. It's about (Noon, 2pm etc). Your friend Jennifer is here. It's raining out today..." The nurse says sedation over many days can lead to ICU psychosis, a condition resulting from lack of normal sleep cycles and REM sleep. Sedation isn't like a long nap -- it's more a constantly submerged removal from clear time and conscious perception, distinguished from rest, not complete relaxation, not deep sleep. It must be something like a nightmare, at times. But he doesn't deal well with the ventilator, so they're keeping him under. Even his waking will be hard. I hope yesterday was a better day.

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