Good Narrative Principles

Goodbye Magical Thinking


Truth is I’m sorry to see it go, because the thing it gives me is some measure of control. Absolutely the comfort of doing something a particular way, wearing my amber earrings and then anything but my amber earrings gave me the illusion of control. But last night, somewhere between twelve or one or two or three or four for that matter, I decided enough is enough.

I didn’t go so far as to throw out my prayer wheel necklace or the $333 dollars worth of dubious supplements I purchased yesterday, but from now on I just have to admit my health and the presence or absence of clear margins is outside my control. Period.

That’s tough.

It’s tough to accept this reality and not want to petition whoever is in charge with prayer. Sit on my zofu and offer up my writing as a sacrificial lamb. Doesn’t mean I won’t do it today, tonight, tomorrow when my resolve grows muddy and the need to create a coherent story out of the whole arbitrary mess overwhelms me.

But for now, I just have to admit that I don’t have a handle on what’s coming or what will pop out of the surgeon’s mouth when he reads to me the next pathology report.

When I was sitting in the room waiting, I kept stoking the positive thinking machine. I breathed. I envisioned buying a bottle of wine, and toasting the end of this phase with one word “done”.  Throughout the schizoid holiday season I toasted to “pleasant surprises” — as if flat out coming out with my laundry list of needs: clear margins, creative connection, financial stability might come across as too much and God(s), being a fickle and judgmental guy (or team) would deem me yet again unworthy. And so I sneaked in a prayer under the guise of not asking for too much. Not absolutely fabulous surprises. But a more modified and age-appropriate “pleasant”.

Each step gets a shade worse. Now it’s a possible mastectomy, because who knows what the fuck my body is up to now. It’s sloppy. Doesn’t quite work like the textbook body.

I have an image of minions of cancer cells happily growing within my left breast. Really guys, we’re just like you. In fact, we’re better. We’re the new you. Sure we look ugly under a microscope, but we’re beautiful. We cracked the code. We defy cell death. We can live forever. Yippee. Like a water slide on a hot summer day, these allegedly non-invasive cells, slip from one milk duct to the next.

Hey guys — there’s thousands more down here. Let’s go.

And my body, somnolent, asleep, weary of all the bright hopes that go nowhere, says alright. Come on. Come here. And here and here.

How to wake up the system and get it to fight back without the external assist from a scalpel that keeps looking for the edges?

And call it the end.



Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.