Tuesday, December 30, 2008

At The End of Each Year

Just to add insult to injury, David and I spent last weekend in bed. Don’t misunderstand. Being in bed with David is not like having a wound. Under normal circumstances this would have been something to celebrate. However, we had either food poisoning or stomach flu – I’m certain no one needs further explanation. Suffice to say, it was not pretty. So there we are moaning and writhing in pain, and each time I get up to brush my teeth, I notice my whole face is becoming increasingly black and blue from the fall on Monday. (Whine, whine, whine). It was absolutely not a time for pretty – except pretty weird. We were so exhausted that getting out of bed for more then a minute was impossible. At one point we thought we might take a walk and we made it all the way from the bedroom to the living room. It’s a small one bedroom so the distance was insignificant—but the attempt was noteworthy.

When I called my kids to find out about their Christmas celebration, I learned that it was OK but on Sunday but Zak awoke with welts or some terrible virus on his torso. He’s also fine but it took me back to a time when I had a rash all over my torso. It was also a holiday weekend and my internist was gone. So, after hours of panicking I finally went to the hospital. As I said, it was a holiday weekend and there were no doctors around—only interns and maybe a resident—who was never available to me. I sat in a curtained room cubby in the emergency room for hours until someone with a white coat appeared. To this day I’m not sure if it was a medical professional or a workman because when he looked at my body all he said was, “That is really gross!” I left shortly after the encounter.

There are so many people who get sick on holidays. Maybe it’s the stress or maybe it’s because the whole family is around and the attention is irresistible. My mom often got sick (rush to the emergency room sick) on Thanksgiving. It was always when my brother and his family were in from Seattle, and we were always convinced that it was curtains for Mom. It wasn’t, and for the last few years she has made it through the end of year celebrations without incident. Curious times these holidays.

At the end of a each year the newspapers, TV networks, radio and I suppose Face Book, My Space and the blogs share their favorite moments of the past year. We all look back at the celebrities who died, the children born, and moments remembered, and are filled with many complicated feelings. The memories can bring tears, smiles, regrets, joy, and even promises for the future. Looking back has always been difficult and picking events I liked or despised not an activity in which I can participate. Not because there were so many or few, but I can’t remember much past yesterday. For example, my favorite moments of today (this is easier to do) were on Morning Joe when Dr. Brezinski called Joe “stunningly superficial” – he didn’t want to say stupid --and he’ll never get asked back even if he is Mika’s father. And when the report of Bristol Palin’s (in case you’ve forgotten --the ill fated Vice President’s daughter),having given birth included a description of the young woman as having been tired of “that high school dating scene so she was ready to be a mother.” What’s wrong with those family values? Sorry, I had a momentary slip into commentary and all I meant to do was try out my memory.

Foolish as it seems, at the end of each year, all I want to do is remember and look forward to good times. Try as I might, I have a problem savoring bad times or, for that matter, sad movies. A friend of mine once said that when you go through a horrible time and live to talk about it, you become a better person. I don’t need to be better. I’m absolutely good enough. And I don’t feel better watching a movie that has an indefinite or “this does not bode well” ending. But these days, it’s not easy to find a movie that ends on a happy note. They all have a pithy important message. Have you noticed there seems to be a plethora of movies with those kind of endings. Even the “Tale of Despareaux” a cartoon about a heroic mouse (who is no Ratatouille or Feivel), is the only thing I’ve seen where the end has some clarity. I’m not even a romantic but I like it when the lovers are not star crossed and you can tell the heroes or heroines from the villains and villainettes. The loss of a friend, the passing of a family member. a serious illness, or saying goodbye to a career or lifestyle takes care of any need I might have for some misery. Quite simply, I need happy.

Goodness, I have changed the subject of this blob any number of times, but scattered is acceptable in a year end wrap up. (I hope I remembered to take this morning’s dose of Metamucil). In conclusion, what I’m trying to say, in a rather circuitous way, is that bad things happen to good people, (good things happen to bad people but we don’t care about them). They happen mostly when it’s inconvenient—like at holidays, and with what’s happening in world, our fantasies (hopes and dreams) should always be about happy endings and delightful beginnings. Have only a very Happy New Year. We’re just sayin’…. Iris


Anonymous said...

Geeze Iris i thought that this was going to be your first porn entry,

then it took a turn for the worse. thanks for all the mental images. I'll call my shrink tomorrow...

im going to go get drunk now...must stop the pictures...must stop the pictures in my head...

Happy New Year, now go brush your teeth...


Pam said...

Dear Friend,

Sitting through the ENTIRE dvd of Rinpoche's teachings could shed a new light on the "happy" you say you need and shape a new course for the stream of blobber-rama.
I'm just saying.
Love you.

Anonymous said...

My sister traveled hundreds of miles to share a nasty cold with me. Its hard to think how to thank her. This is my first trip out without a box of kleenex. Sorry you and Davie were struck with more serious symptoms. Happy New Year.


Anonymous said...

good news - z is going to the doctor today! hopefully he will be better soon! Glad you guys are already...even if you did your best impersonation of nana with the fall. : ) happy new year! love, j, s & z