Coming up soon is my anniversary, of a couple of things.
May 9th will be my 7th wedding anniversary.
On May 7th of last year, I went into the hospital with pulmonary embolisms. I don't think I've ever really dealt with that. For example, I've never written a joke about it. Never turned it into a bit. I almost died. May 9th I was in the hospital. Gary made me a card and ate my tray of hospital chicken. I ate a toasted bagel and cheese and some Hershey bars my brother brought me. For not eating my hospital food Gary later called me a princess; even then his annoyance was apparent. The card was pretty, all watercolors, I still have it. A month later, he was asked to move out and he did. We were already on the outs, already in counseling. The night I came home from the hospital I stayed alone, numbly allowing him to go to the bar after he, or my mom, went and got me ginger ale and vanilla ice cream, Breyers I think; the next day I went and got my $1200 injections of LMW (low molecular weight) heparin because I didn't want to see him screaming over the price because I couldn't fight, and I knew I'd have to deal with the insurers later, and it never did get resolved, dear god I'm still paying for those, and he would watch me shoot 4 needles a day into my gut because my thighs were still muscular (not as much now) so that he could "feel pain" about my situation. My stomach was mass of bruises and I tried to eliminate the scars with pricey Mederma scar gel which I don't know if it quite worked because I didn't want any "new" guys to see what a mess I was in case I ever had sex again, because those were a lot of needles and the coumadin makes you bruise easily. Mark brought me a ginormous smiley face balloon that freaked me out, I didn't take it home, and a cool book, a psycho-sexual crime thriller I still haven't finished. I was supposed to do "school night" the night I was released, and had to cancel on advice of my physician, I frantically called Susannah and she was kind enough to take care of it for me, but it took a long time to get booked again and I was crushed to cancel the gig. I saw my friend Diana a couple days later in Chelsea, she gave me some DVDs, I was pallid and bruised and I asked her if I looked like a heroin addict and she said "yes." In Bloomie Nails they gave me a seat far far from the window, and didn't make me get up for my manicure. I must've looked junk-sick. That weekend I tried to go to dinner, Italian food, on 10th street, I live on 4th and exit my building on 5th, with some friends. It took me nearly 20 minutes to walk the 5 blocks, holding on to street signs because I couldn't breathe. I almost cried half the way, but it took too much energy to cry. I'm still scared, sometimes. I've developed panic attacks, confounding it with the lung thing, which is what i call it, I think. I can now go back to the gym. I've gained a few pounds, lost and gained, but haven't progressed with it, haven't regressed much either. I'm allowed to swim again but I'm a bit scared. I may want to sue the radiologist for misdiagnosis, I'm still within the statute, but haven't decided yet, I think I'm going to, because the rush job sonogram was inexcusable, but it's another thing to do, you know? I'm scared, still sometimes, I used to not be. I almost died. Maybe it helped me end my marriage. Maybe it helped me full-tilt my commitment to being a performer. But goddammit, I almost died. I think I made one joke about it, at Variety Underground the next time I played there, (wasn't so much a joke as a reference) because the first time I played there was the night before I almost died, I did ten minutes there, after hyperventilating....almost everyone thought it was stage fright, and I was embarrased. Some people oddly thought it was a bit. One person thought I was ill, and he was right. But damn it, I did the set that night, May 6th, and the next day I almost died. I remembered leaving VU and finding it so hard to cross Houston Street, why was it so hard to cross Houston Street? I couldn't breathe, even then. The next day I went to work, but cancelled dinner with a friend, because I was so tired. I ordered sushi. I walked to 42nd and 2nd, and couldn't walk anymore. Couldn't. Froze. I called an ambulance because I couldn't breathe. Maybe, just maybe, it was a panic attack. Just incase, let's go to the hospital. Just as I'm writing this, I'm feeling like I'm having an actual panic attack, Dear God, and I'm crying like a madman. Okay. The sushi place kept calling, like the baker in that Raymond Carver short story about the Baker who called the parents whose little boy was hit by a car who died, but the baker kept calling about his birthday cake, and the mother went to the bakery and yelled at him, and he made them sit and eat with him till the sun came up. "A Small, Good Thing" I think, was one of the versions of the story. Except I'm sure no one wanted my old Maki Avenue A (with soup) and tamago sushi. I stopped using my cell phone number at Takahachi for a while. I didn't call Gary until about 4 am or so, for some reason, I spent from 8 PM or so till then alone, he assumed I was out messing around with the comedy folk, as usual. I was wondering if he was gonna answer the phone. I figured I'd better call him. He did. He came. He said he felt "attached" to me when I asked the sonographer (radiologist? I don't remember) if I was gonna die. He brought my sweats and some stuff to read, 100 mystery stories, I think. I don't remember if we argued. I think I tried to send him home. He was going to go to the opera that day, get up early and try to get SRO tickets to some Wagner opera. I tried to tell him it was OK to go, I didn't want to ruin his day. He didn't end up going.
So. That's my story. For now.
I feel a little better, I think, in a weird way.
Still can't write jokes about it. Still, not funny.
Now, the anniversary....Nah. Next time, maybe.