Saturday, 8 October 2011

chapter 9 : not for the squimish

In every post I suggest to the unaware reader to start from chapter (post) no 1. I also mention that it is all fictional, just to be on the safe side. I began writing this story last night on a notebook I found on the pavement outside of my house, in which I also wrote my shopping list for the supermarket. In this particular post I would like to say a couple more stuff: A) if you don't feel comfortable reading about blood, needles, hospitals and patients then please avoid this chapter and B) if you get sad easily, just keep in mind while reading this that Mr BooHoo does not have cancer and he is not going to die, at least not from that, at least not for now. Cheers! Share and enjoy!!!

Chapter ( (9): celebrating life

Mr BooHoo is a birthday person. This means that all year long he looks forward to his birthday. This is partly a result of arrogance, vanity and a deep-set belief that he is a gift to this world that is plainly too stupid to appreciate him- a theory that is greatly supported by his mother- and partly because he always aspires to fresh starts and the idea that his life might become less crappy. He also like new year's Eves, the first day of each month and most mornings (but not Mondays). These times fill him with optimism; they make him think that maybe he could draw a line on time and leave yesterdays jinxes and mistakes behind, perhaps even get new opportunities. Once he made an object he named "day-reboot pill: to be taken before midnight on a particularly bad day and provide your self with a second chance". No matter how great this idea was, Mr BooHoo is a craftsman and not a pharmaceutical genius, thus, the pill was not really functional. As a matter of fact it was neither made of chemicals nor time particles but a pink and a white sock, sewn together and stuffed with polystyrene balls. Further on, it was almost 30 cm wide, a thing that made it hardly swallow-able. To be perfectly honest, one could argue that the pill in question is just a representation and should have been named "a cuddly representation of the day-reboot pill" but this is not the subject of this text. Mr BooHoo's 28th birthday is.

Mr BooHoo likes to spend his birthday alone. No badly organized surprise parties and hastily bought presents (for Heaven's sake if you don't know what to get a person just buy flowers.They are nice, they make the place colorful and fresh and after a while they wilt and can be disposed off without guilt). The previously mentioned ordeals were the cases of his 23nd and 23rd birthdays, when after having spent a lovely day undisturbed he was invited to a house and had to act surprised and pretend he liked his presents etc. His 24th birthday must have been nice because he has photographs in which he doesn't look bored. Some of the presents were very much to his taste! The year after that he was abroad and he blew a single candle on a cupcake after having cooked musaka for a bunch of foreigners. Some of the presents were very nice and some  were totally bulky and useless and he had so many pints at the local pub! That day has a thumbs up in his mind. A day before his 26th birthday he came back home and met with his special friend. This way it became a double anniversary. He blew ample candles on a huge cake that his aunt, who is a pastry chef, made especially for him and a huge candle that looked and smelled like a cake made by his mother and reserved for the occasion. On the morning of the first day of his 27nth year he wrote a note to himself describing how bad the previous night had gone and that is was probably the worst birthday ever with the most unwelcome and annoying visitors. No friends were around but one, the same life-saver that had provided the cupcake two years before that. This account leads to the subject of this text: Mr BooHoo's 28th birthday.

He had let his 28th birthday pass almost unnoticed. He had received 28 (funny coincidence) wishes on an on-line social network, a few telephones, two more personal messages, a very nice specially made video that had touched his heart and no presents at all. (Candy and panacota don't count as birthday presents, not if the receiver get to consume less than a third). He had let it go like this because within a week he would go through another experience, after which he would celebrate being alive. So, a week after his birthday he filled a small suitcase with pajamas, towels and underwear, left the house very early in the morning and went to a hospital just a few metres from the one where he was born. After an x-ray, a urine sample and a blood sample he went into the operating room. There, nurses installed small tubes with cannulas inside his veins and he was laid spread eagle on the surgical table. His doctor was a very, very tall old man with thick spectacles who seamed to know well what he was doing. He helped Mr BooHoo feel safe. He could not stop shaking, in part because he was so afraid and up to a certain  point because it was freaking cold in there and he was naked. Soon he sunk into anesthesia.

Five hours later he woke up in the intensive care room. The door was open and there was a sign that said "first isolation room". Various cables were connected to patches stuck on his chest and various tubes directed liquids and blood into his veins. His blood pressure was measured every quarter of the hour. He could not breath well, so they installed another set of thin tubes to his nostrils. He was visited by his mother, his father, his sister and his friend. All were wearing silly transparent green robes. They were not allowed to stay there for long and he was soon left alone. Nurses would drop by quite often to check his vitals and change the little bags of liquids that went in and out of his body. They told him they had used a kind of anesthesia that would not allow him to feel any pain from the incision. His lower abdomen was covered with thick bandages. He got an allergic reaction from synthetics, but it soon went away, when they changed them with fabrics and paper. Towards dawn -he knew because he could see the clock of the central room from his bed- they informed him that they would help him get up and transfer him to his room. A nurse helped him but it hurt. As soon as he was standing he felt nauseous. A nurse held a tray under his chin and he puked green stuff.

They let him sit on a large hospital armchair and covered him with a sheet. From there he could see outside his room, as far as his post-surgical blurry vision allowed him. He saw a very old patient, with a complicated set of tubes around the face and shoulders. He could not understand if it was a man or a woman. Soon a male nurse helped him sit on a wheelchair and took him to an ordinary hospital room. He still had small cannulas attached to his veins but he was alive. In pain but alive. A metaphorical weight had left his chest and a literal weight had left his abdomen. Luckily there were pills, injections and suppositories to take away physical pain. He knew that within 20 days all this would be just a memory and who knows? perhaps his 28th year might turn out to be a little less harsh. Whatever he had left at the hospital should better stay there and he had ticked off one of his worries from the list. Soon he would even be able to sleep on his tummy, again.