The problem for me with this kind of thing is that I've never been a water off the back of a duck kind of person. I can't tell you how much I wish I was. I'm sure that if I were I wouldn't be sitting here in Mexico in a hospital bed feeling like a pinata with so many people waiting to see what comes out of me. My freedom depends on my not having any more blood in my poop and that won't happen if I can't rest and remain calm. This is one of the reasons why the doctors don't want me to use my computer, they equate computers with work, but I persuaded them to see that I use the computer for companionship and write to relieve stress. Uh, not today, not so much.
And this sure this wasn't the case last night when someone who was so inflamed by my entry that they took the time to create a one-off journal just yesterday in order to flame me, came along and told me off for "daring" to ruin another one of my Mother's vacations that I was lucky enough to be allowed to go on, with my "drama." He, she, or it told me how sorry they felt for my "poor" Mother for having to put up with a daughter like me; a spoiled, privileged, ungrateful, fat, "PIG" with major entitlement issues. Oh and lets not forget the fact that I am also being cruel to a ninety year old woman in a wheelchair who was kind enough to adopt me and rescue me from a life of poverty, that kind of thing.
The thing about the anonymous flamers, and this one didn't even have the courage to leave her very mean comment up on my journal long enough for you to read, (It was deleted this morning,) is that it gives my overactive imagination the chance to seize the opportunity to ruminate on who they might be. Instead of seeing these people for who they most likely are, miserable unhappy people who pop in and out of other people's lives to judge and torment them, or maybe pimply faced teenagers who mostly use their computers for the release of sexual tension, I tend to personalize them and imagine them as real foes, people who present a real threat to me and the people I love.
Last night I worried, (when I am obviously not supposed to be worrying,) that this person might have been the woman I just bought this dress of my Mother's on eBay from, (And why the hell would someone who doesn't love her Mother be spending her days, nights, and few remaining dollars, scouring the known universe looking for lost dresses to purchase and add to a collection in order to help immortalize her?) or maybe she or he was someone who bid against me and was angry that they were outbid and lost the dress. Maybe they are someone else who knows me from vintage dress collecting, or the fashion show that my friend Mary and I worked for so long to bring about.
Maybe they are someone who knows me superficially from Live Journal, someone on my friend's list who feels slighted because I haven't updated it in over a year and haven't added them back, or someone who commented and didn't receive a response, someone who doesn't understand that I have a bad case of ADD (Ha, I originally typed this out at ASS, Freudian slip there,) and cannot, despite my best intentions, be the kind of friend I would like to be to people here. Maybe it was someone I know, who knows me and my Mother, and hates me. Or maybe it was no one who really matters because anyone who really reads my journal should be able to read enough about me to know I am not an ungrateful daughter and that mindful of all of the many gifts I have received from my Mother, material and immaterial, and despite every injury I have sustained, hitting me with a car would be just one of them, to say nothing of the anti-Semitism, racism, outright physical and mental abuse I have withstood, I remain a loyal and devoted daughter, someone who is in constant daily contact and would take a bullet for her Mom.
I shouldn't care at all about what other people think, especially not the terrible things some random stranger might choose to write to a woman lying in a hospital bed, but I'm that thin skinned and I honestly can't help it. It's what makes me me, this contrast between being brave and frightened, big and small, tough and weak, compassionate and insensitive. If I weren't complex, if my life weren't full of drama, I wouldn't be fun to read. And as far as my journal being all about me, me, me, and more me is concerned, I think it's fairly obvious that anyone writing about their own life here is clearly writing about THEMSELVES, making themselves the protagonist of their own narrative. If I didn't care about my main protagonist you wouldn't either.
These kinds of things always make me want to prove to everyone that I am a good person, that my life does have meaning, that I'm not some snotty spoiled brat who cares only for herself and her own needs. I mean for Fuck's sake, here I am in a hospital surrounded by strangers who don't speak my language, in a foreign country where I have been told not to drink the local water when that is all I am being offered to drink, having recently spewed jets of bright red blood from my mouth and other orifices, having had to make all of the arrangements to disembark my poor family from a cruise ship and find a suitable hotel for them, feeling so guilty for having inadvertently ruined their vacation, having seen nothing of the city I am in because I left the ship on an emergency boat, transferred from there onto a waiting gurney into an ambulance that brought me here, having had to endure the humiliation of allowing strange men to look closely at and prod my anus and vagina, having to show every bloody poop that comes out of my body to someone else before being allowed to flush it, having had to have an endoscopy performed on me worrying that when I awoke they might just tell me I have torn my staples and will need emergency surgery, weak and in pain, wondering if the bleeding in my stomach will ever stop, not sure when I will be well enough to fly home, and still I am endeavoring to remain friendly and grateful, an easy patient to deal with, in order to make the lives of the people around me, just that much easier.
Just this morning I have already spent time cheering up the janitor Yesika who is a single mother working hard to support her son and who is sad because the father of her two year old left her pregnant then moved and married another woman and fathered another child who she has never seen. He doesn't send any support of any kind nor does he visit her son so she works round the clock to do it all herself. And this man is a religious brother of some kind. I spent a lot of time talking to her about how it'll get better in time and how she is much better off without him.
I've also made friends with the man who runs the pharmacy; we had a long talk about his smoking and I was compassionate and kind, while trying very hard to give supportive non judgmental advice about smoking without making him feel bad. He told me that his four year old son keeps begging him to quit. I feel so sorry for smokers because I know from first hand experience how hard it can be to quit, my Mom smoked a pack and a half a day for most of my life. I have been told that this may be the reason why I acquired so many auto immune disorders, from the chemicals in the cigarettes that I was constantly inhaling, (she smoked in the car with the windows rolled up and in LA we are always in our cars), from my Mom's exhaled smoke. I also held her hand through her cancer and lost two dear friends to cancer from cigarette smoke; one who smoked and quit at thirty only to come down with cancer at forty, and another who never smoked but whose husband smoked throughout their marriage.
I've also made friends with my nurses, Elizabeth, Robert, Rossy, and Addi, and have been keeping myself busy cheering up frightened fellow patients, visiting the emergency room looking for anyone who might need some comfort. Does this sound like a "selfish, entitled pig" of a person to you? I swear I honestly don't know. I just hope not, and I hope I can continue to write through the fear of this, the fear of being judged by someone I can never really know. The fear that some of what people choose to think about me here based on what I write just might be true, and the fear that any of this could be used to hurt the people I love.
Oh how sweet, Yesika just came in and gave me a chocolate bar to remember her by. Oh oh, I can't tell anyone because I don't want to get her in trouble, but I'm not allowed to have chocolate, I'll give it to Beau. I gave her my address and told her to write to me and that we could be pen pals. I know I suck at this kind of stuff but I'll sure try.
I do this every day; try to be kind to everyone I meet, try to brighten up every person whose life I touch even just in passing. I try so hard to be good and kind, to spread love, light and laughter. I see it as a kind of mission in a way and I feel that if we all could do this all the time the world would be such a better place for all of us to live in.
I believe that people who work in hospitals are angels and saints. I admire them so much for the terrifically hard work they do and know that I could never do it, but I do try in my own small way to make a difference, to be kind and compassionate -- friendliness comes easy to me so why not share it.
However, like anyone, I can succumb to stress, fear, mood swings or a lack of the correct chemicals needed for my brain to function properly, or I might just be feeling a wee bit blue when I'm trapped alone in a tiny hospital bed in a foreign country and will have a negative thought or twenty, but these moments are passing, and like any good Catholic girl, I will shortly be swamped with guilt for having felt or expressed them, and this is what happened yesterday in short order; Mom hurt my feelings, and caused me to overload a bit by making me have to make several hard to arrange and embarrassing phone calls in Spanish, I released the stress by writing freely here on my journal, felt guilty, worked it out with her, and then came by to read the comments and found the one that hit my Achilles tendon, the one that cut right to the heart of my wounded child insecurity, the one that verified my not so secret fear that I am essentially no more than a selfish entitled fat girl who should just shut up and take it, or worse someone who would torment an elderly woman in a wheel chair, an ungrateful spoilt daughter who doesn't love her Mom. And of course, being me, I couldn't just brush this off, I had to spend the night writing one defense of myself after another in my mind.
And just to be completely willing to open a vein here and show you just how twisted up I really am; I am acutely aware of how unfair it is of me to spend this much time obsessing over some random stranger who is clearly a very mean and narrow minded person, when there are so many of you who have been so kind and supportive, totally deserving and wonderful people who I haven't given any or very little of my time and attention to. I feel terrible about this and it makes me think that maybe this person wasn't so far off, maybe I am completely selfish and narcissistic, but then again, nah. Why give credence to someone who doesn't even have the courage to show their face?
Okay, well, that's about all the insanity I can stomach for one day, literally, I just had to get this off my weary shoulders, or belly as it were. It's always all about me isn't it? Sheesh.