Friday, January 04, 2008

A well-organized group of women and men motivated by love is a magnificent thing to behold, scary in its primal ferocity and devotion. Granted, we should live in a country where if someone gets a serious illness they do not have to worry about disability insurance, medical expenses, the expenses of orthotics, or having to work when they are sick to maintain their benefits. We should live in a sane society where people can live and die secure in the knowledge that their basic needs will be met whether they can work at regular jobs or not.

But since we don't, as yet, live in such a country, thank God for love, which pulls gifts of service and devotion out of us which we didn't know we had.

Last night I sat in the circle, humbled by the skills and willingness of the mostly women and a few men around me, Carla's support group. People had thought of everything, from getting her a health advocate to funding a trip to Mexico so she can boogie board with her son while she's able. Carla and her 15-year-old son had made individualized T-shirts for everyone in the "Driving Miss Crazy" support group with our face silkscreened next to Carla's. Mine is bright burgundy, my favorite color, and sexy and low-cut the way I like. Every other person's was an appropriate cut and color for them. Carla also had a T-shirt made for her ex which reads, "My estranged wife got ALS and all I got was this fucking T-shirt," which perfectly captured one amng many of the supreme ironies of the situation.

Laughter and tears. There's been a lot of both. Right now it's storming outside and I'm so grateful C doesn't have to go to work, but can stay in and annoy me by reminding me to clean up the dresser top on my side of the bed, repository for old coffee cups, glasses of water, half-empty bottles of medication, and assorted earrings, pennies, and stray buttons.

I am caught between the mundanities of life--extra cups of coffee, cleaning the room, trying to finish the plays and the essay I started, and the hugeness of this thing I cannot put my arms around.

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