Not so Ho, Ho, Ho

I hate the time around Xmas and New Years.  Have for decades. I resent the fact that as a Jew, I have to bear the burden of 2,013 yrs of Christian hegemony. It seems unfair. 

To be sure, I am grateful not to have to scour malls, downtown shops or quaint yuletide markets, for just the right thing or something that’ll do, then pay for patterned paper only to have it torn apart. But in the grand scheme, this benefit does little to lift the weight of the season.

What is it about this time of year that gives it such a smell of disappointment?   

A little retrospection might lighten the years gone by. Wasn’t 2012 great by comparison? The last year before cancer. But I’m hardly going to waste time revising my assessment of Christmases past.

I thought a few episodes of Sherlock would fix or dull my grumpiness. I was wrong. A little too somber, perhaps. Too in sync with my mood. Great show, though.

Almost anything can exacerbate the kind of blue that blankets late December. Crises of varying magnitude are equally capable of taking me down: a pimple, an hour on hold with Bell to get anything resembling an explanation for why the technician didn’t bother to show up to install the new modem after 5 hours of waiting.

The light bulb on the front porch going out. Last time this happened, it took me months to drag the ladder up from the basement and fix it. Now I have cancer, and I don’t feel like changing the fucking light bulb again.

Knocking over a glass of really nice scotch.

Getting stuck on a waiting list for chemo...

“But call back on Monday and check the list.” That’s what the nurse told me on Friday, when he said it was a no go for the 30th. On the bright side, I get New Year's Eve free of toxins and exhaustion.

I left a message with the Hematology Nursing station first thing yesterday morning, in case a bunch of people chose a hair cut over chemo and left a spot open for me. 2:45 pm is when I got a call back from someone claiming to be a nurse who might as well have been a clerk in the lingerie department at the Bay. Or better yet I could have had the conversation with myself at 8:00 am.

“Do you know when the chemo might be?”

“Well hopefully sometime this week,” pulling out that hope skill she learning in nursing school.

“How likely is that?”

“I don’t know.” Better not to make it up.

“Is there a risk to waiting?”

‘I don’t know. But sometimes patients can’t go ahead because their blood levels aren’t back up.”

“Yes I know that. But that’s not the case for me.”

“No it isn’t.”

“Should I call every day and ask?”

“Yes, that’s a good idea.” Good idea, identification – another skill.

“I’ll do that. Thanks. Also, I’ve been having these little sharp pains in my abdomen. Might that be related to the chemo?”

“I don’t know. Sometimes patients get shingles.”

“This isn’t shingles.”

“Good. You could ask your Oncologist at your next appointment.” Yes indeed I could.

So, between the light bulb, the pimple, Bell, no chemo, no answers, and the weight of 2 millennia marking the birth of Christ, It’s been a hard few days

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