In which every man is an islandMarch 20, 2012
On Monday morning, an elderly man put on his windbreaker, got into his car, and drove around the perimeter of the harbor and its many marinas. When he got to the last parking lot by the beach, he pulled his car into a spot. I wasn’t there, but I’m guessing he took a minute to watch the waves crashing over the breakwater. Maybe he was thinking about his own boat, which he’d just sold for a pittance. I don’t know what he was thinking, but it spurred him to pull out a gun and put a bullet through his brain.
He was my dock neighbor for years, and although I did not know him well, we bonded over the fact that he grew up in the same tiny town in Rhode Island where my grandmother was reared. Cap’t. Ron. That’s what we called him. He was a Vietnam vet, I believe a fighter pilot. And now, he is gone. In the wink of sunlight on the sea, a shot can ring out and rob someone of his life. There is no reason to it.
The news came while I had some out-of-town friends here, dear friends who understood my inability to get out of bed, and busied themselves like bees, and then settled in to gab with me. My love for these people is boundless, and I wish we lived closer.
In other news, I had a PET/CT scan today, which I slept through. Results in a couple of days. It will help me make a decision about what to do next.
Some people are saying, “What if this is the chemo that finally does the trick?” and oh, isn’t that a nasty little game to play. I think I’m going to need some pretty damn good odds before I jump into anything else that promises a lot of nausea, hair loss and other horrible side effects that I would, of course, get. I got pretty much every side effect possible, no matter the medicine. My hair has come back, but the texture is hard and frizzy. It’s unruly. It doesn’t matter what products I use — my hair screams “witch.” And anyway, it doesn’t really matter. I’m not photographed a lot, I never go anywhere, and I’m not dating.
The hair could look like anything. It might as well all fall out. If the odds are any good, I’ll try the chemo. I don’t know. We shall see. Right now, I’m going to lie in my cloud bed and doze until this cold goes away.
I hope today holds at least one moment of magic for you.
Also, today’s my brother’s birthday. (I have not shared this blog with him, and prefer not to.) He’s a great support to me, and a great person. I don’t know what I’d do without him.