May You Sleep Tonight….

*I wrote this last week…I am still trying to catch up with all my dreams… 🙂

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It’s now 11:59 p.m. In one minute today will be finished. A new day will begin. I stare at the little body in the bed. After many tosses and turns, the lil one is finally still, yet I can feel the restlessness that is inside. I look at the clock. 12:03. This is going to be a long freakin day.

I haven’t slept yet. I look down at the clock on my phone. I have officially been up for 32 hours. Matt, the nurse, comes in to check the still one who is snoring softly. Pulse is good. Temperature is normal. You should try to get some sleep.
Thank you, I will try.

3:30a.m…that’s when they bring out the doughnuts…but you can’t buy em yet…I got my eye on that nice glazed one in the right corner

3:45a.m…walking the hallways until doughnut release time. its quiet, except for the heavy footsteps of the security guards and the occasional sound of opening elevator doors. Its kinda spooky, almost like a scene in a scary movie. I should be scared because I’m black and everyone knows that the black person is always the first to go in a scary movie. Hmmm, let me go back and check on that doughnut . Just in case.

My little glazed fellow is still chillin in the corner when I get back to the cafeteria. I pick him up and gently place him in a white parchment paper cocoon . Inhaling deeply, I can smell his sweet sugary goodness. The weird thing is that I don’t usually eat donuts because they aren’t worth me getting sick, but it looks nice in my hand. I take a bite. Soft. I take another bite. It aint no Krispy Kreme but not too shabby. I want to take another bite but I don’t. I need to be there for the lil one. I toss my half eaten fellow in the trash and head back to the room.

It’s quiet when I get back except for the clicking of the medical machines.

Up for 37 hours. Wow. I feel energized. I feel like I could run a mile or two. I am so tired, my eyes burn and feel heavy but the thoughts in my head keep my body up.

I curl up into a ball and wrap myself in the thin blanket that the nurse gave me. I want to sleep, I really do, but the steady sounds of the IV pump remind me of the heart beat that the hallucinating man heard in Edgar Poe’s poem, “The Tell-Tale Heart.” All I can hear is ticking and clicking. It fills my head. It’s all I hear. I wonder if Edgar wrote because he could not sleep. Maybe he couldn’t separate his dreams from his reality. I wonder.

Time passes. The sun breaks through the sky. Shifts end. New bright and alert faces exchange places with those with sleepy eyes who want to go home. Vitals are taken as new introductions are made. Time passes as we watch cartoons. A knock on the door. A tray of food arrives. Clear broth for the lil one. Nothing for me, the remnants of my doughnut still in my throat. My contacts are dry. I blink to refresh them. A knock on the door. The Doctor comes in to see their little patient. I heard you have been up for a while, hopefully you will be able to sleep tonight? She smiles sympathetically already knowing the answer. I nod confidently. I’m sure I will…

but I already know…until lil one is okay.

I won’t.

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The 10 Foods I Would Eat If I Could Eat…

This has been a tremendously hard week for me.  I’ve been hungry…like really hungry…like an “I would even eat something that dropped on the ground and was slightly covered with dirt particles” type of hungry.  I have been dreaming, thinking and reminiscing about food.  A lot.  Logically, I know this week probably has something to do with my hormones and Mother Nature (ahem)…and I should be happy that I only deal with this type of hunger one week out of the month…but dayum, that doesn’t stop me from wanting a Philly steak and cheese…extra peppers, please!  People often ask me, “If you could eat anything, what would it be?”  When given that question on the spot it’s hard to pinpoint just one thing, because there are so many things that I could choose.  So, today, I thought about the things I would have if I could have anything that my heart desired…it surprised me that some of the items listed below were not because of a particular taste but of a particular memory associated with it…so here is my list of the ten food items I would really love to eat again…and in no particular order

Medium Rare Ribeye Steak with A-1 sauce…because it’s so freakin good

 House salad with blue cheese (no croutons…I am scared of them. Seriously)  I miss salads the most!

Pho soup (just noodles no meat) with extra bean sprouts & jalapeños and so much Sriracha Sauce that your nose runs profusely and you cry

Cherry Chip Cake (2 layers of course) with creamy white icing so thick you can’t swallow without the help of cold water or milk…I had this cake almost ever year for my birthday

Fried Cabbage with Polish Keilbasa… my Mommy made this like 2 times a week…she simmered it with butter and salt & pepper…truly comforting and so damn good!

Sauerkraut (that’s the German in me) & Hotdogs (that’s the American in me)

A Krispy Kreme plain glazed donut…the first time I ate one of these…I felt dare I say, “not poor” I was in my 20’s and went to a KK store and ate one when the sign said “Hot”…as a kid I only ate clearance half-priced old donuts…you know the donuts that were made on Monday…but now sit on the “special” markdown table on Thursday

A warm McDonald’s Filet-o-Fish with extra tarter sauce (I ate these because of the steamed bun…it was so soft, kinda like a baby’s butt)

Southern style peach cobbler with flaky crusts…reminds me of My Dear Aunt Marie…who could throw down in the kitchen

and Finally…

An Oscar Meyer bologna sandwich made with 2 pieces of soft white Wonder Bread (the bread HAS to be taken from the middle of the loaf…not the front…and definitely not the back) A little mustard, a pickle and some chips = lunch heaven for me

…and don’t judge me…you know Nobody likes the crappy heel part of the bread loaf…they just don’t admit it

Chew. Spit. No Swallow.

Doughnut

Image via Wikipedia

Today I ate a warm glazed doughnut and it was pure heavenly bliss.  Well, technically I didn’t really get to eat it, but I did enjoy the savory sweet taste on my tongue for a moment.  Chew. Spit.  No Swallow.  This is what I do.  Is it gross?  Maybe.  But for me, it’s a way of life.  I miss doughnuts.  I really do.  When I was growing up, we didn’t have a lot of money and doughnuts were always considered a special treat. My mom would get “day old” doughnuts from the grocery store and we would microwave them…to make them soft.  I never complained.  I was happy.  When I was 36 years old, I visited a Krispy Kreme store one afternoon and took a tour.  I felt like a kid again.  I spent a whole afternoon at that doughnut store…watching those little beautiful brown glazed beauties through the glass.  They were beautiful.  They were perfect. They were delicious. That was the last day I enjoyed a doughnut.  Until today.
I have sacrificed a lot for my illness. The joy of running on a clear crisp morning. Going out to lunch with friends.  Champagne at midnight on New Year’s Eve.  Sleep.  But I won’t give up doughnuts. Not ever. There are too many memories linked to them and I refuse to let my illness take another thing away from me.  Today with that doughnut, it felt like old times.
Chew. Spit. No Swallow. Gross?  Who cares.  I didn’t complain.  I was happy.  I was a kid again…at least for today.