Monthly Archives: November 2001

crazy weekend

i rushed to NY to visit with my family on Wednesday.. well, rush, sorta.. 8.5 hours to get there (cruel & unusual punishment, i tell you) apparently AAA said that like 85% of its members were on the road!! (i think that if AA was looking at its stats, it would find that 85% of those who should be their members were also on the road..) i was in a lot of pain by the time i got there… i hadn’t sat up straight for two weeks so sitting in a car for hours was like agony. it was made worse by the fact that i couldn’t take my pain medication and my lovely mother, in all her preciousness, was kinda anxious and i must admit that tension and anxiety continues to make thing worse… stupid body parts.. so anyhow, i got to NY for the family thing, spent time with my oh-so-large family of 8, peacefully endured the conversations about Afghanistan (all pro-war, of course), and did a good job of keeping my opinions to myself…

after about 24 hours of familyness, i took a look at the traveling situation and decided to head to Wilkes-Barre to meet up with my friend A… i had decided to go to his reunion, barring any more pain from my ever-grumbly ovaries… although i wasn’t feeling perfect, i felt good enough to go so i got to his silly mountain by the middle of the nite. funny thing is that his family is born-again-Christian so i knew that i would have to be on best behavior (hell, i even had to put away my current reading material – Satanic Versus)… but they were sweet and nice to me (his mom even made me a cake on my birthday!!)…. A & i spent the first nite up chitter chatting about a variety of things, mostly because i was so bouncy from driving…

the reunion was utterly ridiculous… completely in fact. i got to meet lots of crazy strange folks… all of the punk-rock-trouble-makers now have kids and are going through divorces… girls who looked like madonna in their 1980s year book pictures are now wearing plaid dresses that do not become them. there were really only three of us girls who looked like we were still partying and living life. one was a guest of a new divorcee from Chicago.. another was A’s cousin who’s still partying at the same level that she was in high school (which she never graduated from).. she was a bloody riot, coming up to A immediately telling him he’s lost weight and obviously got the good-looks genes of the family (then proceeding to tell him all the problems that the family has – diabetes, heart problems, cancer this, cancer that)… she was a trip. another good friend of A’s was this overly sarcastic boy who’s given up on people so he doesn’t go out of his house in Pittsburgh… another boy was this cop who had been in love with the same girl since he was 15.. she finally paid him attention just after he graduated high school, he got her pregnant, now has a 9 year old, cheats on her, does a lot of drugs and is a cop ::sigh:: another kid works border control in Mexico… needless to say, everyone was trashed, drunk for free and smoking weed out back.. good to know that middle america never changes.

didn’t do anything on my birthday, ‘cept recover from the hangover, change my car’s oil and drive back to Boston… back now, trying to recover… ::sigh::

is it that foolish to expect that i should be able to get an academic education at an academic institution? i definitely set my expectations way too high for what i thought i would get out of the Lab, and it’s just disappointed me over and over again. that, plus the lack of support or kindness by faculty members. i feel as though i have bosses instead of teachers or advisors. i am treated like a 5 year old or an employee in a nasty hierarchical system, not valued for my opinon, punished for being too sick to attend class, treated as though i don’t choose to go here. i want to be a student; i want to learn; i want to do good work, but when i am treated with such disdain, i shut down… i just thought that an elite educational institution would be so different…

so at least i have a diagnosis now.. i can handle that. knowing that it’s cysts and that all i have to do is lay back, take my birth control pills and hope that it goes away in the next few weeks. it’s not much of a luxury, but at least i know what’s going on. the only prob is that this means not going out, not doing much of anything. i feel like a lump. and i can’t take concentration medication so i can’t really work much (sad, very sad).. so i am stuck at home, doing nothing, trying & failing to focus… but at least i know what’s going on…

some days, i genuinely wish i could just buy into that blind faith thing.. have blind faith in something, anything. and not just a substance, not something temporary. i want long term blind faith. i want a purpose in life. a religion maybe. i wanna wake up blissfully ignorant and go about my life in pursuit of the higher purpose. maybe blind faith in the idea that capitalism is good for all humans. or that God is the purpose to life. why can’t i just have some blind faith please? and it doesn’t come in a tab or a pill, nor in weekly therapy visits or avoidance. i think too much. i am my own disease.

i despise modern medicine; oh let me count the ways.

i decided to listen to others’ advice and seek out medical help for the blasting pain that i was feeling in my abdomin. for the umpteenth time in my medical career, i walked out of the hospital 14 hours later with thousands of dollars in debt and a kind diagnosis of “unknown cause”. i am ok with systematically being able to stump computer programmers as i crash their software, but i am not ok with constantly being able to stump the medical system. how about the time that i threw up continually for two days? or when i used to pass out randomly? unexplainable causes, immense tests, no success. irritating.

i thought that i had this one down pat. hell, i had every classic symptom of ovarian cysts – locational pain, bloating, nausea, hot/cold rushes, pain during penetration (including by me with my fingers). the pain had evolved over the last 6 weeks; i had my period twice; numbness had evolved in my legs and my bladder felt so much pressure that it always wanted to pee. school put me on UTI medication but that did nothing (not like i had the secondary characteristics for that anyhow). at the ER, had tons of different doctors, surgeons, nurses feel around my belly, put pressure on things, notice the bloating. in the internal examine, the doc said things felt peculiar and that there was definitely swelling. anal probes suggested that it was not a problem there. appendicitis specialists said it didn’t seem like that. ultrasound showed slight cysts on the other side, but non-related and _nothing_ on the right side. wtf? it would be one thing if i was imagining my symptoms all by myself but the doc noticed some of them. where do you go with this? what’s the next step?

i’m in pain, can’t walk comfortably, am unable to laugh without pain or otherwise cramp my muscles. but, the hospital couldn’t see anything wrong. so they discharged me with “unknown cause.” can’t wait to get the bill for this one, reminding me once again that there’s no point in seeking medical help.

is it possible to affect societal change? what does one need to do this? how does one avoid being just another cog in the system? it seems to me that the system is really well stabilized so that i either have to accept my fate as cog or suffer severe consequences of rebelling. i think that reading a lot of philosophy these days is depressing… i really appreciated one of my modernity texts stating that modern life is inherently depressing because we’ve taken away religion, we’ve restricted escape tools and yet we continue to point out that individuals have no power or control over their lives. plus, by stressing self-reflection, we only magnify this problem… maybe i should stop self-reflecting.

what is the definition of community? i think i totally pissed off a professor in one of my classes because i refused to buy into his definition; i refused to agree with a “social networks perspective.” but it gets me to think.. what is the definition of community?