I have hesitated to post anything since Halloween. I had mentioned that a family member was in the hospital at that time. It’s my youngest brother and the prognosis is not good. Apparently he is in late stage Liver failure and it’s more than likely due to his lifestyle when he was younger. I know he does drink regularly but many people do and don’t have this happen to them.
He has been a heavy drinker most of his adult life especially when he was in the lead singer in a Heavy Metal Band many years ago with a lifestyle that went with it. They played in many of the rock and roll clubs in Detroit and the suburbs.
I was originally told that my brother was injured when he lifted something heavy and tore his esophagus. This happened due to the thinning and weakening of the membranes making bleeding a huge danger. He must have already been quite ill for some time but never said anything, as many of us don’t until it’s too late. I have heard of cirrhosis of the liver before but never knew that it actually can make your body sort of deteriorate where you have bleeding all through your body, sometimes severe enough to cause death. I have been reading up on this condition to find out as much as I can.
He had emergency surgery on November 1st for esophageal bleeding, was in the hospital approximately one week recuperating and having more tests, was released and collapsed a few days later at home in a much worse condition with more widespread bleeding. He was in a coma for approximately 11 or 12 days and started waking up a few days ago. He has been in ICU because it does not look good, he could pass at any time. He was just taken off the ventilator a few days ago when I was there on Thanksgiving and it broke my heart to see my brother with tubes all over his body knowing any time might be the last time and having him plead with me to bring him back home.
He has no energy and kept saying “help me” and “take me home with you” in the tiniest whisper changing from lucid one minute to not making any sense the next. The nurse told me this was common due to high blood ammonia from the liver. When I had to leave due to the 2 hour drive back home before dark, he kept saying “don’t go.” Until a pretty nurse came into the room, then I could leave.
One of my daughter-in-laws was able to feed him a tiny amount of thickened liquid yesterday as well. He has a feeding tube and is not supposed to have much by mouth right now, anything can cause this bleeding again but since they can’t just have him stay this way in ICU, they are trying to see if he can tolerate stuff so they can eventually get him out of there and he can actually come back home.
One of the nurses said if he can get through this crisis and follow Doctors orders there might be a possibility to get on a transplant list if he gets stronger. If I qualify I would not hesitate to donate part of my liver. My liver tests looked good a couple months ago. I have hardly ever drank, smoked or took drugs my entire life so I am hoping that it’s a possibility though age is also a qualifying factor. I forget the older you get the less valuable your life becomes in our society.
Wondering if I should move again. Just not happy here but not unhappy either.
I think I need to start drinking, lol! So jealous of those that can drink, enjoy it. I never have. It burns my mouth, I start to feel tired after a few sips, too many calories and a waste of money.
Love it out in the country, but sometimes I miss the noise, pollution and crime of the cities. Wait, no I don’t. I do miss the ability to shop and socialize with certain people that were always too busy for me even when I lived near them. To be fair, I was always too busy myself.
As a writer and an artist, I am an introvert and empathic by nature. It’s actually painful for me to socialize at times. I love a good conversation with the right person but frankly most people bore me to tears or scare me. Very few know how to actually converse about anything interesting, myself included unless I’m in the mood. My sister was the extrovert and how I met some in my life that I would not have made the effort had she not been a part of my life and reached out to them.
Soon the summer will end….
and fall will begin….
My favorite time for some reason. Maybe all the pretty colors?
There’s that, Autumn colors, Pumpkin Spice, Pumpkin everything, warm woolen sweaters, bonfires, apples, cool crisp air that is so welcome after hot, humid summers.
Was going to write a pleasant, congenial blog post about trees so I didn’t have to be real about what I have been feeling as of late. I have decided to go another route completely and make this “branch” prompt about branches on my family tree. The heck with trees, I just want to talk some truth today. I’m actually allowing my brain to “regurgitate” all kinds of krap that I hold inside of myself. I think getting my DNA tests back and researching various family is causing me to feel things that I usually choose to push way back as I live my life on automatic. I was in such a bad mood yesterday after a distant relative “innocently” made a very thoughtless and incorrect comment about my life to me and I flew off the handle. My mood has not improved as I have had time to reflect on many things.
Some of you might have read some things I posted about a year ago when I was finding out more things about my family that I had not known or was not sure about. That is when I received a few things from a family member regarding news coverage of the vicious crimes my father was involved in before I was born and that he was only captured when the police shot out their stolen car and stopped he and his “gang.”
My parents marriage was a freak show that lasted 19 years with many hiccups along the way. They were separated many times for various reasons such as other women or incarcerations. There was that one time that my father was actually one of the Detroit 59er’s but that was a complete “bust” as well. A person with a positive brain would concentrate on this story, but that’s not what I’m going to do since my father decided to get drunk and give up as usual. He has so many opportunities I could only dream of and threw them all away for whatever reason.
My mother had a chance to divorce him when she was incarcerated while pregnant with me as a possible accessory to his criminal actions and a few times after that but she wouldn’t let go. It wasn’t until recently when I heard someone explain the psychological make up of those that choose to stay with narcissists did it make sense to me. They were a perfect fit. She hated herself and he agreed with her. He continued to commit various crimes in between infrequent employment, running around with other women, drinking and brain operations to help ease grand mal seizures caused by scar tissue received falling from a horse as a young teen.
Never heard any stories about my father because neither of his parents cared about him or their grandchildren. I never knew either one of them. I met his alcoholic father a few times but he never said a word to me the times we were down to their farm years ago. His mother took off because of his father’s drinking and refusal to hold a job and she never looked back. She didn’t want her son, because he cramped her style trying to find another man. I don’t really know what she was doing but she managed to move all over the country for a while until she came back to Detroit to fulfill her dream of marrying a wealthy man.
I saw her for a short time while we lived in an old farmhouse in the country nearby owned my her new hubby. He owned a number of businesses and homes in and around metro Detroit. My father was running one of the businesses until he began stealing from his own father in law because whatever he was being paid and living in a free house was not good enough for him. He was fired and we were kicked out, forcing him into yet another mediocre job to survive and moving into a very run down, rat infested home in Detroit.
My dad was nice looking and could be very fun and charming when he wanted to be. I will say as abusive as he was when he was drunk, I still preferred him over my mom. He taught me to play the guitar, banjo and the piano, loved animals and shared everything he had with me like his collection of records including John Lee Hooker and Johnny Cash and his only guitar. With my mother everything was “you don’t need this, no you can’t have it.” My father was never good with money and sometimes even at our poorest, he would say “hey kids, let’s go down for some ice cream.” My mother would say “they don’t need ice cream” because she knew we couldn’t afford it but my dad would say he knew we didn’t “need” it but he wanted to get it for us anyway.
My mother was an odd, inhibited, beaten down person that didn’t like to cook or clean house and completely ignored her family unless she was fighting with my father about something. She had to be suffering from depression but was never treated for it. She would vacillate between being lost in books and newspapers completely ignoring us to lashing out if you provoked her and we loved to provoke her just to get any kind of reaction. My brothers still talk about how we knew our mom was not paying attention to us so we would ask or tell her outrageous things to hear her pat answer of “that’s nice kids.” Stuff like “mom, Bryan just set the house on fire.” “That’s nice kids.” We would laugh! “Hey mom, Bob just stabbed Bryan.” “That’s nice kids.” Course we stopped laughing when he actually did it one day.
My mother was also a victim of a closed head injury when she was hit by a Trolly in Detroit as a teen, suffered a severe concussion as well as fractured skull. She was is a coma for quite some time according to my grandmother but fully recovered having to relearn some things which put her back a year with no memory of the incident. My mother’s intellect never appeared to be affected and she love to put the rest of us down or laugh at my dad because he was not very bright. Can’t imagine why he chose the company of other women to her and always spent as much time away from the house as possible.
As I write this out and edit so many things are becoming clear like why the chip on my shoulder is so large and why I have so much pain and emptiness inside of me. I never had the love that I needed so desperately. Many of us don’t. I was never invited, never felt welcome, was always considered a misfit or an outcast, just like the rest of my sad, loveless family. I never meant for this post to develop as a bitch fest about my parents but folks have to realize we are all victims of circumstance no matter what our station in life.
Years ago I finally told my mother that I never felt loved by her or anyone in my family. She was half-assed defensive about it but I told her our family was unGodly. The Word of God was NEVER spoken in our house and where there is no God there is no love. I truly believe that. I believe the only reason I survived this freak show somewhat intact was that I did get to live my first four years with my Christian Aunt and those years are the most formative even if you cannot remember everything that happened. My sister and I used to stay with her and my maternal Gram on weekends after that because it was too hard for my parents to take care of us all. I am not a well-adjusted person nor do I cope with things well because I feel every slight or disappointment that happens is just another reminder that I will never win in my life and I am right. It’s not a good feeling. When I was younger I could convince myself that things were going to get better. I was wrong.
I can pray all I want but I know the spiritual truth of this evil world because I’ve lived it. The more good I do, the worse things that happen in my life. God only knows why because sometimes good things do happen to good people but more often than not “no good deed goes unpunished.” That saying came about like Murphy’s Law, from real people living real lives and seeing certain things in action, not in wish-fulfillment. I believe in praying to God to thank Him for each day and for strength and mercy but I have given up on the dream that I will ever have things the way I think they should be in my life and in the world. I have seen such suffering and pain in others as well as myself that defies any logic of spiritual reciprocation. The great thing about that is that is does not discourage me because that’s not why I do things. God knows my heart that when I do it, I do it freely for Him, not for a favor from Him.
Those that have many trials have to decide to how they wish to respond to those trials. I just saw something the other day about the load some have to carry is not about the weight but how you choose to carry it that will break you. I know some alcoholics that bitch and moan and cry about the same thing all the time because for some reason they cannot mature enough inside themselves to understand that this is life and sometimes there’s not a damned thing you can do about it no matter how hard you try. Which means grow up and deal with it instead of feeling sorry for yourself. Develop a grateful heart, a heart for God. A heart for revenge if you must. Revenge against evil and that is in doing good. This type of thinking helps me cope with my reality.
Some of us have had to leave our homes in the past and go on to other adventures in our lives.
Sometimes it’s people we love or used to. Sometimes it’s the life we used to live.
Sometimes we are leaving actual “things” behind. Things we paid for but of no real value. The false importance we placed on the “thing” due to some great marketing campaign and the idea of keeping our economy viable. Truth is, the more things we leave behind, the more we can actually start living again. Many born past 1980 never got to live, they have been “consuming” since birth.
Like many low middle class families back in the 1950’s, it was a much simpler and happier time. Not many years out of the great depression, there weren’t a lot of distractions from the real world. The waters were much cleaner back then and even the birds sang sweeter to me.
I wanted to share some of my early vacation pictures in Michigan. The oldest of six children, one of my Aunt’s loved taking pictures of me when I was little so our family had a glut of baby and toddler pictures of just me or me with another family member. We don’t have many pictures of my father because he took off when I was a teen so we don’t have any pictures as a family after the one where we at the park having a picnic. My father was so fun and talented, but very impulsive with a drinking problem at times. I wanted to post the few pictures I had of having fun with my father for Labor Day.
We used to camp all over the state of Michigan when we were not visiting my Aunt and Uncles cottage on Black Lake. I only feel good when I am out in nature and still find myself walking the trails as often as I can taking pictures of the beauty I find.
Dad and me at the cottage.
Not sure what game we were playing.
In my wading pool in our Detroit backyard.
Got dad to play dolls with me!
Dad and me cooling off.
Swimming in my undies missing dad.
Dad and me playing on the Seesaw. I used to be so scared of those things!
Dad with me, my sister and my oldest brother probably in Lake Erie somewhere.
From our ages, we are probably somewhere in the Upper Peninsula.