Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Mysteries

 I was kind of thinking that Chip would get up out of that hospital bed and go back to his previous life. Part of me is still in shock that he didn't. When he wrote about being in that bed, how amazing it is, how it automatically adjusts to your weight and inflates and deflates so that you don't get bedsores and how the BP cuff is always on and how your pulse ox is always being read and how the Foley catheter is in place at all times that took me back to the five days I spent in CICU back in 2005. Based on that I figured they would make him right as rain and he would be back to cooking the food that he loved so dearly. I got up, went home, why didn't Chip? I guess there are many things I don't understand about medicine.

Anyway, those beds are way cool and ever since my stay in one I have wanted to get one for my house. I have a feeling they cost more than a Sealy Posturpedic.

One's personal medical history and one's family medical history play roles in all this. Just today I was recounting much of those histories to my own doc, told him how no male in my family has made it to age 73 yet, how all of my predecessors died, what carried them off this mortal coil and that got me to thinking about such things. Morbid, perhaps, but reality, nonetheless. Each and everyone of us reading this blog could tell stories about illnesses, close calls, NDEs, and so on. I know I could. So far no apparitions or spirits or angels or imps of any manner have showed up to usher me one direction or another. Of course, for an old dude such as myself to talk the rheumatiz or arther-itis is just annoying to everyone involved. Organ failure - been there, done that, but like so many things in life, timing is everything. Don't do that all at once. 

Today the doc told me no more salt. "No salt for you!". He must have gotten me confused with Trooper - that's a natural mistake, the resemblance is uncanny. So no more salt for me. So it goes. I am going to miss salt. Salt was one of my major food groups, along with water, bread and meat. Once again, I will adjust.

I am still out there, still trying to outrun the grim reaper, the doc said that I am probably better off running rather than not running, so I will keep doing that.

We have lost a valued member of our blog community. That time comes to us all. It would be nice if we could all leave as big an impression as Chip did - but he was truly exceptional.

One of my brothers drank himself to death.

I can see the Chatham county line from my house.

When they want to run some tests.

Play this one as they carry me away...


This is a bit more somber:


As the years have passed I have become the spitting image of Mr. Natural.


I don't know whether or not I concur, but that seems to sum up what I know.


Also, keep on truckin'.

20 comments:

chickelit said...

There's tiny cemetery up in the hills maybe a hundred miles east of me where many of the headstones have my last name. It's been closed for burials now for a long time now -- 1968 is the the most recent that I can find. I's nearly impossible to find without prior knowledge and isn't visible from any road. This is where my pioneer family buried their dead beginning in the 1850's for a hundred years ago or so. The patriarch (my GGG grandfather is buried there along with his wife who bore him nineteen children. Five of his sons fought in the Civil War -- all returned -- including my GG grandfather who did lose three small children to disease while he was gone. But they made more -- including my great grandfather.
My brother and I were back there last weekend as we scoped out where we are going to take our sons turkey hunting in a few weeks. As we walked among the tombstones - some now illegible - my brother said "They can feel us -they know we're here...I've never felt that before ."
"It's because there are two of here now stemming from the same father who stemmed from them." I offered. I believed his feelings were real even though I felt nothing. "Imagine how strong it will when we stand here with our sons."

We both want our ashes scattered there.

Sixty Grit said...

That is a great story, CL. My cousin recently visited our family plot in Kentucky and noted the same sort of thing - first, many, many children, many of whom never reached their majority, and kind an odd sense of family and communion with those who have gone before.

And just a word from someone much older than you, hold off on the ash scattering for as long as you can, okay?

chickelit said...

Was that place in KY call Grit Holler?

The cemetery is actually atop a hill or rise near a stream valley. There's road through that valley and many years ago it was actually called a "hollow" with our family name. I have this from an old local newspaper. The part of Wisconsin that my forefathers farmed is of geological interest: It's called the Driftless Area -- so-called because the last ice sheets missed this area while flattening the rest of Wisconsin and the surrounding states. The region is characterized by rolling hills, bluffs, steep valleys.

Sixty Grit said...

I read a bit about the Driftless Area - I find geology interesting, especially features caused by the recent Ice Age. Lakes all have their own history and places like most of Maryland don't have lakes because the ice stopped north of there. The forces that created so-called Carolina Bays, the round or elliptical lakes down east of here have caused a lot of conjecture, but as near as I can tell, no definitive proof one way or the other.

And yes, there is a hollow in Kentucky with the family name attached to it. It's near Jellico Creek and we were thick on the ground in those parts once upon a time.

Dad Bones said...

No more salt? I like my salt but I'd gladly trade it for a little more time in this marvelous and mysterious world, mean as it can be it still has more to teach us than we could ever learn. Chip was awash in mystery and miracles as are yourself and others on this blog.

The Grim Reaper is the hunter and we're the prey. If he isn't chasing us he's up in a tree stand like a bow hunter waiting for us to walk by. And so we do our best to avoid him, outsmart him or whatever it takes for a little more time to make ourselves into something the Reaper will be proud to hang on his wall. Knowing he's stalking me is what keeps me going.

When he finally caught up with Johnny Cash he loaded him onto the 309.

chickelit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chickelit said...

"The lack of glacial drift and the ancient landscape here are clues to geologists that the glaciers somehow missed this area, yet surrounded it."

That in itself is a mystery.

chickelit said...

An old post linking R. Crumb, The Grateful Dead, and Walt Disney: link

ndspinelli said...

Great anecdote chick. I conducted many a surveillance in the Driftless hollers of Wisconsin. Almost all were challenging, mostly due to the terrain and rural venues. Worked a case in one of my favorite town names..Boaz.

chickelit said...

I've been through Boaz many times but never stopped. I know the next town over on 14, Richland Center, quite well. Growing up, I thought that we came from Richland Center because my grandparents lived there. My dad never said a word about the old cemetery near Viola. It wasn't until 1997 when my grandmother passed that we (my brother and I) learned about the old cemetery which is near Viola on the Kickapoo River. My aunt showed us.

ndspinelli said...

The Kickapoo River is prone to flooding. I reckon the cemetery is on high ground, or the bodies would have washed away.

chickelit said...

Yes, it's on high ground. Probably for the reason you give.

XRay said...

Don Juan said death comes from over the left shoulder and as the days go by I feel myself glancing that way more and more often. But, as you have said so well, SG, we do just keep on trucking. After all, Chip may have got out while the gittens good the way the damn country is going.

Sixty Grit said...

Dad Bones - thanks for the link to the Johnny Cash song - I had never heard that one before. And I just checked and Mr. Cash died at the age of 71. Somehow he seemed much older. Also, 71 used to seem much older. I will be 71, knock on wood, in a few months. Hmm...

Sixty Grit said...

And XRay - now you have me flinchin', lookin' over my left shoulder. Aw heck, what did Don Juan know? Oh, right, he knew much. Sheeeit...

XRay said...

He did, actually. There is mystery there, and truths.

ampersand said...

Who knew this was a thing?

MamaM said...

After listening to the 309, I too wondered how old Cash was when they put his box on the train; and I was also surprised to learn he was only 71. I was grateful the next song up was Folsom Prison Blues. That familiar pulse and tune helped put me back "on track" again, as encounters with some of life's truths and mysteries tend to overwhelm. I also appreciated the description of the Reaper in the Tree Stand.

SixtyG, I was kind of thinking the opposite of you when I read that post, with a sense of dread coming up. And that may relate back to unexpectedly losing two loved ones in ICU and having to walk out of the hospital they'd entered only hours earlier, into a life without them. I hadn't realized how deeply that had affected me until an emergency with one of the SonsM brought me back to the same hospital a year later. And when we were finally able to walk out that hospital door together (with everything intact), I was surprised to find myself crying with relief, feeling the joy (and lingering sadness) of leaving with a different outcome.

What I summoned to replace the dread, was hope; while also holding the awareness that multiple organ failure is difficult to reverse. In the end, it sounded like his body, under severe siege for several years, wore down to the point where it could no longer support life. In the post written two weeks prior to his final one, a series of unusual dream sequences and pictures about life, death and transfer are described, with this as the close: ... then all your transfers can expire, and you finally let yourself go.

Dad Bones said...

I was unaware of Chip's post, MamaM. Thanks for pointing it out. It's one to bookmark as I'm sure I'll return to it.

As for dying at the age of 71, that's when my father went. The closer I got to 71 the more I wondered if that would be my jumping off point too. It didn't happen, though, and I'm up to 76 now. Deer rarely bother to look up when making their way through the woods and don't see their personal Reaper pulling back his bowstring and letting the arrow fly.

So many things to look out for in this world. I'm surprised we live as long as we do.

Sixty Grit said...

Dad Bones - I know the feeling. Both my father and grandfather died at age 72 so for many years my only goal has been to make it to the age of 73. That's a couple years in the future, and while I like to think that I will make it, as you say, there are many things in this world to look out for.

One day at a time, eh?