One more item checked off my bucket list: Acupuncture

I did it. I finally did it. Say hello to the human pin cushion. I let a doctor stab needles in me from head to ankle. One between the eyes, a few on the side of my face, and more down my arms and legs.

The DIY acupuncture kit from Home Depot is cheaper and equally effective.

And the experience wasn’t free of pain either. The needles in one ankle and one elbow smarted. But it was nothing compared to the pain of an IV started by a nurse fresh from nursing school.

The needles were easy. Having to lie flat on the exam table for 30 minutes  – not so easy or fun. I don’t like being horizontal and unable to move around, and 30 minutes of not being productive was torture – until the table started spinning and I had this strange floating feeling. That was a bonus.

But I can’t say I really felt any different during the procedure or immediately after it. I was a little disappointed and didn’t think I would return for another session.

And then I got home.

Yes. Home. And I started feeling . . . strange. My wife’s green eyes seemed greener and her hair darker, with more texture, richer. She looked amazing.

Luckily, my daughter was busy Skyping with a friend and too busy to notice her parents sneaking off to another room. I grabbed my measuring tape as my alibi, just in case, as we may redo the bedrooms when we remodel the kitchen.

[CUT TO: black and white movie from the 50s and image of train going through a tunnel, followed by fireworks and rockets blasting off.]

I have my moments. I don’t have many of them, but I do have them.

Then the rest of the day I felt high. And if someone had offered me another session of acupuncture, I would have jumped at the chance. In fact, I felt like a junky needing a fix.

Euphoric? Is that the correct word?

I’ll be returning for another treatment. I can’t really explain what happened during the first one, but something did. And it’s worth exploring to see if there’s more magic in those needles – or if the doctor is dipping them in a solution made of something very unique and illegal in most countries.

Either way, one more item off my list – with a bonus experience. It doesn’t get better than that. I heart acupuncture.

Caillot de sang sur mon derriere

The Universe tossed me a bone this week.

Hello, Universe, what do you have planned for my backside today?

And yet, at the same time, it delivered another painful lesson to remind me how stupid I am and that I am here for its own amusement.

I visited the cancer hospital, which was an experience in itself and humbling, and met with the colorectal surgeon to fix my rectal prolapse, or what two doctors agreed was a rectal prolapse – first the ER doctor, then my gut doctor, whom I wish had taken a closer look. Maybe he’s dealt with one too many assholes, me, to deal with another.

So, with the opinion of two doctors, I felt confident to make the following statement to the surgeon’s young, highly-attractive doctor in training: “I diagnosed it myself before going to the ER.”

Yes, I looked right into her brown eyes and I said it, selling it with confidence and pride. I should have added: “Give me a mirror and scalpel, hot stuff, and watch me repair it right now. Yes, that’s how awesome and brilliant I am.”

Hello, I’m the Universe. I love it when this idiot gets overconfident. Nothing like a good backhand to the head to teach him a lesson. Wait, it’s about to happen. 

After five minutes of talking about my medical history, it was off to the exam room and getting on my knees and bending over a custom-made, tilting exam table for having your rear-end examined or praying. Or both.

Now I have to mention at this point, as a reminder, as if you needed one, I’m a polarizing person in medical situations that some might consider to be stressful. People either think I’m Mr. Funny Guy dealing with a life of doctors, hospitals, and medical tests, or, on the flip side, the biggest jerk in the world.

Door number two, please.

Many doctors find Home Depot’s tools useful for surgical procedures. And they include a 2-year warranty.

Is there a more appropriate place than an operating or exam room for a joke to lighten the mood? I think not.

Like when the doctor tipped the table forward and my ass raised high in the air for the crammed, standing-room-only crowd of nurses: “Where can I get one of these for my bedroom?”

Dead silence.

Or, how about this classic to the doctor after the scope went in and out and I pulled up my shorts up and faced him: “Well, that happened.” [Confused look by the doctor.] So, I tried to explain the joke: “That’s what Alec Baldwin said in the movie, State and Main, after he drove drunk, crashed with an underage girl in the car, and sent her walking home with a bad injury, then left the scene of the accident himself. ‘Well, that happened.'”

Clearly, I didn’t deliver the line correctly. More silence from the crowd.

This is the universe again. You are such a prick. You never learn. Time for your self-esteem buster. 

“You don’t have a prolapse,” said the doctor.

“What did you say?”

“You have a blood clot, not a prolapse”

“Do I need surgery for that?”


Yes, my dear reader, I’ve been walking around for three days thinking I had a backside in need of surgical repair. Perhaps, a symptom of something worse, the C word. But at that moment, happiness flooded my brain and I could have kissed a few of the onlookers (you know who you are).

However, it occurred to me that two doctors had looked at my rump, “my lovely manly rump” (hey, a similar line was good enough for the Black Peas), and confirmed the diagnosis.

Or had I, super-idiot-pretend-doctor, planted the seed in their minds and they followed along?

And then I thought of my wife following the ER doctor’s directions and trying to push it back in place two times a day for the past three days, which according to the surgeon was about the worse thing you could do for it other than stabbing it with a rusty knife.

Hey, it’s an Edvard Munch painting. Oops, it’s just you in looking in the mirror.

Put me back on the bench and whip me for being too stupid to walk the planet.

Agreed. “I diagnosed it myself.” That’s rich. You’re not very bright. That does make me laugh and it’s not easy to make me, the Universe, laugh. Good one. 

But the best, most deflating moment came when I walked out of the exam room and looked down the hall, waved to the doctor and his two assistants, only to have them not notice because they were standing around laughing.

By the way, recounting this story now makes me feel icky inside. It’s one thing to be an idiot, it’s another to know you are and not be able to do anything about it. [hands on head; head hitting the desk over and over. Thud.]

I am like watching a train full of circus clowns derail and explode into a mushroom cloud of fire, flesh, and flaming red rubber noses falling to earth like meteors.

So, it’s two baths a day, four more days of suppositories, some ice packs, and a return visit in two weeks for my next bombing performance. I can’t wait.

Well, that happened.

Yes. Yes it did.

Some days even the luckiest man in the world feels unlucky

No doubt in my mind I’m the luckiest man in the world. I believe it. However, nothing rips my luck from me, rolls it up into a little ball and lights it on fire in front of my face like a CF clinic appointment with low PFTs.

I can eat a steak dinner in front of the TV while an open-heart surgery is on, which grosses my wife out. However, there is something really creepy about looking at this plastic head model with half its skull and face missing. Me no likely. Bad dreams for me and my imaginary friends now. Creative Commons.

Kick me in the groin, stomp on my back, rub my face in the dirt, piss on me like a dog, CF

Yes, after finishing IVs a mere 6 weeks ago and much improved PFTs in the hospital during the IVs, my PFTs were way down. Arghhhhhhhhh, someone stick a Drano IV in my neck and end this misery.

It doesn’t make sense – both my doctor and I thought this at the same time when light-bulbs appeared over our heads.

Then we talked about the problems I’m having with allergies and my sinuses. He thinks the post-nasal drip is draining into my lungs at night. And he heard wheezing in my right lung, which is the side I sleep on at an raised angle.

Then after a look at last year’s CT scan of my head, which showed dozens of loose screws, broken glass, two fat gerbils smoking cigarettes next to a rusty training wheel, rocks of all colors, shapes and sizes, and McGriddle-shaped clouds, he told me it was time for sinus surgery.

And like a good coach, he told me to hit the saline rinses and dual nasal sprays.

And, as a bonus, I got an Rx for oral steroids for only the third time in my life. Now, the three readers of my blog may remember that when they gave them to me in the hospital in 2010, I experienced hallucinations.

Oh, happy days, more imaginary friends to meet the imaginary friends I already have when I’m not downing prednisone.

It’s about to be party time in my head. See you there.

Yours truly,

Still the luckiest man in the world

I experience a perfect day

Saturday night, at 1:30 in the morning, as I wedged myself onto the dog couch with a yellow lab at my feet and a black lab on an adjoining ottoman, I realized I had experienced a perfect day.

Yes, with who knows how many days left to go in my life, I did it.

Jackpot. Hole in one. Full-court basket. An elusive occurrence indeed.

It started Saturday with the first day of my three-week vacation from work (future blog post). I woke up with relief that I didn’t have to think about email and projects for Monday. And what a difference that makes in enjoying a weekend.

Great game and the Xbox equivalent of Wii's Mario and Luigi.

I took the dogs on a long walk in 70-degree weather. Other than making the mistake of wearing my flannel-lined pants and having to strip off a couple of t-shirts during the walk, it was April in December, with the sun’s low angle the only difference. And maybe the brown lawns. An no flowers. Nevermind.

I returned and played “Rayman Origins” with my daughter on our new Xbox. The 9-year-old monkey is testing me on video games now. I’m the king of video games but she’s playing with a faster network of nerve impulses from her brain to her hands than I am and it’s everything I can do to keep up with her.

Later that afternoon, we did a parent doubleheader when our daughter played guitar at a recital, followed by a soccer game.

She strummed Silent Night and some other Christmas song I can’t remember because I was doing my best to keep tears from spraying from my eyes like a broken fire hydrant. Something about the experience knocked up my emotional cortex, and watching her up there, dressed up and concentrating, made me feel so lucky to experience the moment it was hard to maintain my composure.

At the end of last year’s soccer season when my daughter’s opinion of her effort didn’t match reality or our opinion, my wife and I had what was one of the hardest conversations we’ve ever had with her. We’re not of the school that we tell our child she’s great at everything-but we’re not about destroying her self-esteem either. However, we gently told her we didn’t think she gave the season very much effort.

And boy did she grumble. And she may have cried a bit. But to her credit, she came back this season and played with more effort and skill than ever before. And it culminated in the last game of the season where she played a great game. She’s not the best player on the team, but it’s about being engaged and trying hard. And she did that. So, we celebrated by going out to dinner and letting her pick the location.

I am a sherbet freak. This is one of my all-time favorite flavors

At the Argentinian restaurant she chose – she likes steak – I stole some of her rib eye and ordered a black and white lobster ravioli in a pink sauce that was mind-blowingly good. I followed it up with a dessert at home of Tropical Rainbow sherbet and Oreos. Perfect finish, a foodie touchdown.

After more Rayman where my daughter and I ran circles around my wife, who spent her youth studying and listening to Tom Petty and Bee Gee records and not hanging around 7-11 stores playing video games, we put our little superstar to bed and watched Friends with Benefits. It was the perfect “I don’t have to think hard to watch this movie” movie, and got me out of the doghouse for choosing Melancholia a few weeks ago.

Then came SNL with Katy Perry hosting and more laughs. And at 1:30, when I went to bed, I realized I had achieved an elusive goal – make each day great.

Saturday, December 10. Check.

Lucky rock

An ocean rock attacked me this summer. I wrote about it here.

This is the police line-up of beach rocks. Which one hit me? Creative Commons: Gastonmag.

Quick recap: I was standing in a foot of Malibu surf searching for rocks and shells with my daughter when the water churned a stone into my ankle. I developed a large painful lump and thought, “what bad luck getting hit by a rock while enjoying a day at the beach.”

I went to the doctor and had my ankle x-rayed. Hematoma was the diagnosis. Good news: Nothing serious. Bad news: plaque in the arteries. “Go see your heart doctor right away,” the ankle doctor said.

And I did, leaving a copy of the x-rays with him for an expert to examine. And I was given orders for several blood tests, which I didn’t get because my teeth were being pulled out or cracking and I was busy paying for my dentist’s new fishing boat.

Now we’re back to the present, almost.

The day before Thanksgiving my heart doctor called and confirmed atherosclerosis showed up in the x-ray. I wasn’t happy about the timing of the call before a four-day weekend. However, I didn’t let it get to me. I didn’t think of it once until today when I went to complete the blood tests, and tonight writing this post.

Instead, I spent the holiday weekend looking for ways to have fun each day and not worry.

A new Xbox is in a UPS truck with my name on it right now because 1) I’ve always wanted one, 2) it will be fun for the holidays, and 3) I’m not sure I can play any more Mario and Sonic at the Olympics games.

More rocks to be identified. Creative Commons: Henkster

Again, the keyword here is “fun,” as in, “it’s better to seek fun out than wait for it to find you.”

And the rock I thought was bad luck? It’s now my lucky rock sent by the universe to let me know about a problem that might have gone undetected until the day I yelled at my Denver Broncos to crush the Minnesota Vikings, felt a pain in my chest, and face-planted into the wasabi cucumber dip. End of my story.

So, let’s toast to the writing of a new ending, the endless pursuit of fun, and a lucky rock.

What not to do when someone tries to break into your car at 2:30 in the morning

[As if readers of this blog needed more proof of my stupidity, here’s more evidence. Clearly, I could place “what not to do” on most of my posts, but this is more glaring than the rest.]

I was having a bad dream, which is not to be confused with the parts of my life involving cystic fibrosis. This one happened while I was sleeping and woke me up at 2:30 a.m. I’d also been fighting a virus all week and my body temperature was screwed up, which made me feel more discombobulated at that hour (building the excuse for my idiot behavior right now).

What's a leek?

As I am the most paranoid guy in the world, I looked out the window of the front door on my way to the bathroom, as I always do, and noticed a white SUV in front of our house. Double take, it’s really there and the door is open.

Unfortunately, I’d been too lazy to replace the bulbs in the fixtures near our garage because I would need to find the step-stool, and because the light fixtures are a pain in the arse to unscrew and there are spiders in them and I didn’t have bulbs and hadn’t gone to Home Depot to buy any because even though I’ve passed the store 50 times in the last two weeks, I was too lazy pull into their parking lot, get out of my car, lock my car, walk into the store, find the bulbs, pay for them, get in my car, drive home and find the step-stool.

So, the driveway was darker than it should have been thanks to me, creating the perfect environment for thieving scumbags to go to work. Oh, and I didn’t have my eyeglasses on either.

So, I moved to the bathroom window to get a different view and I saw someone standing next to my wife’s car with an object in their hand – a tire iron? I don’t know what it was. All I know is after all the years of people stealing shit off of my car at night, I was pissed. A spark ignited in my brain, or what there is of one, and any chance of rational thought fled it as I walked with pace to the front door.

I didn’t disable the house alarm when I opened the door because I wanted the high-pitched squeal of the 30-second countdown to start in case one of them came running at me and I had to shut the door in a hurry. I can’t hear the sound anyway thanks to years of IV tobramycin, but I figured they would hear it loud and clear in the dead quiet of night.

Geek does Rhyme with leek

I opened the door and in what my daughter would call my “big voice,” I yelled “Hey you guys, get away from that stuff.”

I had to confirm this is what I said with my wife at least a dozen times because I couldn’t remember and I thought I must have yelled something like “get away from that car, low-life scum, before I come out there and rip your bowels out of your throat” or something cool like that.

But no, I didn’t say that. I said “you guys.” Not “you scum sucking criminals’ or “demon-spawn from hell car thieves.” No, instead I said, “you guys.”

Oh, and by the way, while I was using my big voice, my wife disabled the alarm because I’m always activating it by accident, which she thought I did again, unaware I was having a conversation with criminals.

At about the time I opened it door and yelled, it occurred to me at the very second the words left my mouth that I was yelling at exactly the kind of people in Los Angeles who worship and carry guns. The kind who probably don’t like being told what to do in a loud voice.

And there I was standing in my t-shirt and J. Crew boxer shorts covered in a charming “carrots and leeks” pattern (picture included) in the glowing light of the porch.

Could there be a more perfect and easy-to-shoot idiot in the history of targets?

I’m a lucky idiot because the perps ran to their SUV like the vermin they are and pulled a U-Turn in front of our house as my wife and stood in the doorway watching like dopes – defiant dopes – providing yet another possible double-homicide, target-shooting opportunity for the crooks, and headlines for tomorrow’s newspaper, with our daughter growing up parent-less.

And though I was calm during the incident, after I shut the door I was wound about my stupidity and it took me two hours of replaying my missteps before I could go to sleep.

Now the hindsight part of the story.

Though everything turned out okay, I’ve been flogging myself daily for not calling the police as the criminals did whatever they were going to do, which is a mystery still stuck in my mind and a question I can’t answer for friends who hear the story. What did I really see in the street-light dim of night?

I would have loved for the police to catch these guys. I love stories like that. But I blew it. I blew it. I let my anger overcome my rational thoughts and even endangered my family by opening the door, a key defense (the sound you hear right now is the whip hitting my back).

Though I may have saved the $500 deductible for my car insurance, it cost me almost a grand to have an electrician, locksmith and our alarm company come to the house on Friday. We now have new motion detector lights around the house, stronger locks in the doors, and a soon to be upgraded alarm with a panic button for my wife when I’m not home – and a different tone control panel I can hear when I am home.

Oh, and I did drive to Home Depot to buy five bucks worth of light bulbs. And I did take out the step-stool and climb up to unscrew the tops of the light fixtures to reach in past the spiders and cobwebs to unscrew the bulbs and replace them, which had they been replaced may have stopped all of this from happening by causing the criminals to go to a different house with a different idiot lording over it.

The silver lining: when I’ve away, I’ll feel a better with my wife daughter at home with improved security. But I’m not done yet. Soon to be installed: a fence or wall. A good fence may make for good neighbors, Mr. Frost, but an electrical one with barbed wire makes for a big FU to criminals when they’re flat on their backs unconscious waiting for the police to scrape their electrocuted, bloody bodies from the sidewalk.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. This is a lesson is what not to do when criminals pick your house to rob. Call the police. They like to catch bad guys. Unless you own complete body Kevlar®, of course, which means you can walk right up to them and beat them with your flail, which would feel pretty satisfying.

Stay safe.

Letter to my daughter 06/13/11

[To my friends: I’ve been tinkering with this post for almost two weeks. It’s the most frustrating of my letters to my daughter and makes me wish I had told my wife about my blog so she could edit it. I’m posting it so I can move on to new posts. However, I’ll probably revise this one forever. ]

Dearest Daughter,

The mistakes I’ve made in my life haunt me. Probably more than they should. But I can’t help it and I can’t forget them.

I wish I could take what I’ve learned and transfer that knowledge directly to your mind, helping you avoid the same ones. But I know you need to make your own.

Perhaps, I can help you in an unusual way.

Creative commons: Photo by Chefranden

If a butterfly flaps its wings in Hawaii, will it affect the weather in California? This is my version, by the way. And, my answer is “no, it will not. Or, there is no way to prove it.” However, if a nuclear power plant melts down in Japan, will it affect California? Yes.

So, there are obvious, major events we can measure – radiation – and events we can’t – the influence of the butterfly’s wings.

But when it comes to your life, the butterfly flapping its wings, or the small event seemingly with little impact at the time, matters a great deal.

Think of the timeline of your life, past and future. Actions or a lack of action in your life, especially early on, will change your life when you’re older – for better and worse. In my case, worse.

I think of my life now and believe it should be easier than it is. I should know more than I do. I should know how to do more things – play the guitar, solve harder math questions, identify more plants and trees, make more money, have the perfect career. I should be in a better position to take care of you and your mother.

And when I look back on my life, my situation now is a creation from simple actions I took or didn’t take when I was younger – when opportunity presented itself. I hung out with the wrong people and made the wrong choices, and never factored in the future.

Here’s the simple equation: (here and now + anything goes) – an eye on the future = the hole you’ll have to dig yourself out of for the rest of your life.

Creative Commons: Photo by shark001

This doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, or must work yourself to the bone. Have fun. Enjoy life. Just remember little events and choices have potentially big consequences later on in life. You’ll have to live with the good and bad decisions. No matter what though, don’t beat yourself up like I have. Let the bad ones go.

I’ll leave you with this. Until you know exactly what you want with your life – what makes you the happiest – open as many doors as possible, try as many far-reaching experiences as possible. Play the guitar, the piano. Learn karate. Skeet shoot. Make a quilt. Study as much math as possible. Appreciate science and nature.

Better yet, ignore everything I’ve listed and go your own way, but always love your Mother no matter what.

It’s my hope one day when you’re in a tough situation, on your own, with someone leaning on you to do something you know is probably not the best choice for you to make, this post will remind you to imagine the butterfly and the air currents its flapping wings displace. And strength will come to you from the knowledge that those currents can only travel a long way into your future if you allow them to.

Love, Daddy

CF Bones and Benihana Redux

It’s all in the bones

“You look skinnier,” one of my co-workers said. I had just arrived at the office and “POW,” in my face. Cream pie, yum. It amazes me when someone comments on how I look when they greet me. I don’t understand it and never will. “Yo, Unknown. Hey, is that a new mole on your neck? I hadn’t noticed it before. It’s gotta be a centimeter in diameter. Wow, look at the curly hair coming out of your left ear. Oh my. And look at that nasty looking suit. Is that lice?”

I’ve heard comments about my weight my entire life. They used to throw me into a tailspin and send me to the vitamin store for a jumbo can of weight gain powder. Now they don’t bother me as much because my skin is elephant-thick. And my scale screams when I step on it these days. But sometimes people say “thinner” because of my CF bones and the look CF etches on my face. What my co-worker probably meant to say is “you look sick in the face,” which makes me think a bag over my head at work would be a good idea. But later that night, when another coworker told me I was looking well, I got confused. Does anyone else get this many comments about their looks? Supermodels need not answer.


Don’t pick up the phone when he calls

Why does every local work dinner I go to culminate in a trip to Benihana? What is the allure of the place? Instead of my thoughts on it tonight, let’s hear what Stacey of Confessions of a Cyster thinks of Benihana. She gave me specific instructions to give her credit (in a funny, charming way like only Stacey can do).

You have to constantly act impressed with the stupid knife-slinging show…then ohh and ahh at the onion volcano.  Seriously, how many onion volcanos do you really have to see in one lifetime.  All this while trying to avoid being in the path the one time they slip up.  Oops, everybody makes mistakes, right?

Exactly, Stacey. You’re right on. Nothing spoils a good night out like a hibachi knife to the chest.

I once posted this photo for CG. It's good luck. So, perhaps the screaming chef shouldn't knock it over. I don't want "Brady Bunch finds lost Tiki statue in Hawaii" bad luck. Sorry, Lucky Kitty. Please don't curse or hurt me.

The food was good, but the applause for tossing a few shrimp tails into a hat was non-existent. Suggestion for improvement to the Chef: toss a few flaming shrimp tails in your paper hat, let it catch fire, and run screaming from the restaurant, knocking over the lucky kitty and aquarium as you go. That will earn you the standing O you used to receive in the 1970s when your table was filled with onion-volcano virgins.

I did, however, think Benihana would benefit from Stacey’s constructive feedback. So, I emailed her blog site and home phone number to the Head Chef at Benihana. (Stacey, he wrote back and said he’d like to make you dinner one night. You’re welcome. Enjoy. Your pal, UC.)

Stay happy and wear a Kevlar vest when eating out.

Raindrops on Roses, Crushes and Bromances

Today started off in a dark place and improved until I coughed up blood streaks tonight. Add that to the back pain I’ve had for the past four days and I feel like I’m playing the game where you place your forehead on a baseball bat, spin around it, and then run to first base. How did I end up in the stadium parking lot?

Photo by Angela Sevin, Creative Commons

This is my mind on CF

My “monkey mind” is lighting up like a fireworks factory fire. Will I be in the hospital tomorrow for the bleeding? What if my kidneys are damaged? I can’t get comfortable. Am I peeing too much or too little? I can’t concentrate on work. WebMD says I have a rare form of kidney Ebola.

I gave urine and blood at Quest Diagnostics (QD) yesterday. I fucking hate Quest Diagnostics.

First, the waiting room is full of sick people who want to kill me (always bring your own pen to sign in with or you will catch Ebola).

Second, the QD workers always ask me: “Why the mask?” Because I have a highly contagious disease that made my ass expand to the size of a beach ball. They used a 14-inch railroad spike to pop it. Hurt like hell. Oh, and what a mess. However, I will take this mask off if you kiss me while I pee in this cup?

Third, QD bills are the gift that keeps on giving for months to come. Thanks to them I had a collection agency harassing me over a $120 invoice I’d never received. QD representative on the phone: Oops, we’re so sorry. Computer error. We’ll tell the agency to remove the medieval catapult parked in front of your house.

I’m in the outfield again. Oh, yeah, Crushes and Bromances.

I was thinking tonight about a few of my blogging and Twitter friends and how much I dig them. I admit the following: I have crushes on my female readers. And a bromance or two – don’t want the guys to feel left out. But, dudes, eat your hearts out – I have some highly intelligent women reading and commenting. How did that happen? Clearly, the bag on my head makes me better looking, as I was told it would in high school – yes, the bullies were right. Thanks guys, I thought you were just screwing with me.

So when does the “Women of CF: Mensa Edition” calendar hit stores? I am so ready to buy it. Sign me up. And I want each month autographed: To Unknown, [(I +U ) 2011] x CH3CH2OH + HLT = CF-3 ft x ∞

Strange, I never anticipated blogging would have this benefit. I do confess it’s hard to be on my best behavior in comments and email.  Sometimes, I’m biting my knuckles with Fox telling me: “Write it. Write it. She’ll take it as a compliment. Oh, you wimp.” Rule #2 in the Book of the Unknown: Never listen to Fox.

Follow-up to yesterday’s post

When I started this blog, my goal was to be as frank as possible. To lay it all out, take risks, and leave a record for my family and those who are kind enough to read it. Though it’s challenging to judge for myself how I did, I do think I came close – with an asterisk.

When year two came around, I knew I’d been holding back posts about thoughts that screw me on certain days, and have since I was 16. That’s because it’s hard to blog about cystic fibrosis and not take the whole of the community into mind and the toll the disease has taken on younger and better people than I.  It doesn’t feel right to talk of certain feelings with these special individuals and families in mind, especially when I’m the luckiest of the lucky.

But that doesn’t make certain thoughts go away or not part of my life. Yes, I’m lucky to have so much. I think of that every day, but my mind still plays tricks on me. CF has taken its toll on me over the years – the hospitalizations, the fear, the number of times I have coughed up blood. These events have damaged my brain wiring.

I think about escaping sometimes. Luckily for me, I have not chosen this path, as I don’t like pain, though I have a tolerance for it in the hospital. But I do live with the warped thinking. It would be disingenuous for me not to mention these thoughts occasionally. I’m hoping that by doing so I can reduce their power. That’s my hope. We’ll see. Feel free to skip these posts. I can tell you that the post that follows will usually be happier, or angrier in a fox-like way.

Sometimes, I fall off the Happy Positive-Thoughts Wagon and it takes me a day to get back on. But I do get back on.

Stay sane and patient, please.