I almost died, once.
First I woke up at 7 in the morning to beat the traffic and get to the day hospital on time. I needed blood drawn, I had a clinic with the oncologist and then there’s the whole 7-hour infusion thing, so it was going to be a long day.
This is what they’d been singing about the whole time, this springtime lemonade world I didn’t know about before this drive.
You wait in the MRI machine. Cold contrast dye splits your veins into arctic and tropic currents. Metals clang together. The whole thing sounds like accessing America On-Line in 1998 at a New York City subway stop. You’re on sedatives because fuck this shit. You think, “This dubstep concert sucks.”
Just like that, I went from a 32A to a 32Nothing. My chest became an arid wasteland, an Afghan desert littered with emotional IEDs in the form of new scars, new bumps, new tubing, a new geography I had no map for and no idea how to navigate safely.
His shin folded under him like a toothpick snapping, and I am not exaggerating when I say it was the most grotesque spectacle of human fragility that I have ever witnessed.
It’s been three days since chemotherapy, and my nurse called this morning to ask how I was feeling. I told her I was feeling alright, and she congratulated me, saying that today and tomorrow would probably be my worst days and that I’d be on the upswing soon.
I know that the idea of monogamy is really kind of crazy and it’s super insane that there could be a person out there I could fall in love with right now and not get sick of over the next sixty-something years slash eternity because I totally expect scientists to develop immortality before my time is up.
I wouldn’t call it hopefulness, exactly; it was more like last minute, panic-induced mania, probably induced by the same biological response that causes all your capillaries to explode in a futile attempt to warm you moments before you die of hypothermia.