Saturday, October 31, 2009


Here's a special edition of what I've gleaned from I Can Has Cheezburger efforts.




I've written a scrap of action from my sci-fi novel in progress, Pya, that will take place several months from now in the book. If you don't want the unfolding of the narrative to possibly be ruined for you, don't click on "Read More" below.

And Blue, it's not bad news, I promise.

To begin reading this sci-fi novel or for background information, go to my Chapter One post here. To read about the background of the first novel, read my post here, which will also direct you to appendices.

For more detailed information, posted elsewhere on this blog are:

Pya Dictionary from Skenish to English (complete up to present chapter), with some cultural notes included
Pya Cast of Characters (complete up to present chapter)
Map of Pya with Description of Each Island
Map of Skene (but not Pya)
Map of Saya Island and Environs When Pyosz First Arrived
Skene Character Lineage at Start of Pya Novel
Skene, Chapter One (With Cultural Notes in Links)

Pyosz would ever after remember that first night with Maar in flashes of pure sensation, not in clear chronological order. The most vivid was opening her eyes to the light of one and a half full moons silvering the new wood floors around her bare iron bed, pooling in her second-story room through her generous Dvareka-facing windows. She was ravenously exploring Maar's melt with her wide mouth and vigorous tongue, but even the flood of her own pleasure could not keep her from looking to watch Maar's surrender. Maar's knees were bent so she could lift herself to Pyosz's demand -- as if that was necessary -- and cords of muscle in her thick thighs were visible in Pyosz's periphery. Her head was arched back to the mattress, her mouth open for one shrieking moan after another. Through Maar's red thatch, Pyosz could see that Maar had hands clenching the iron rails of the headboard for traction.

Later, they guessed this is how the headboard weld was rattled loose from the bedframe.

Pyosz's second most intense memory was when the bed fell. She was on her knees, Maar behind her and in her, thrusting with a throaty yell at each push. Suddenly Pyosz was pitched forward at an acute angle, and she put her palms flat against the wall to hold herself back from it. She barely registered the crash, though later she would mourn the deep gouges left in her precious floor from the bedframe edge. She gasped only "Don't stop."

Maar closed the brief gap between her and Pyosz, and continued with measured abandon, trusting Pyosz's powerful arms to keep them both on the sloping mattress. When they both reached temporary release, they climbed out of their crevasse, laughing hysterically, and pulled the mattress flat onto the floor before flinging themselves back onto it, now flat but drenched in sweat.

Qala and Lawa downstairs and at the other end of the house, however, were awakened instantly by the crash. Lawa said "'Did a tree come down?" Qala pulled on pants as Lawa rushed past four curious katts to the front porch. Before she'd crossed the main hall, she heard the thumping from above and returned, scarlet-faced, to tell Qala "It was them" with a jerk of her head upwards. They decided to make tea and toast, talking over the intermittent sounds from Pyosz's part of the house. Clicker the kitten begged for a treat and Qala gave her a sliver of cheese as she remarked "She'll do the milking, nothing stops her from that, but they'll be worthless otherwise tomorrow."

"Not just tomorrow" agreed Lawa, grinning. "Good thing Maar has the day off."

"Remember that night in my little room off the Lofthall office?" reminisced Qala. "I fell off my cot more than once."

Giggling, they returned to bed for a few more hours' sleep.

When Pyosz's alarm rang, she and Maar had dozed off in a tangle of limbs only 15 minutes earlier. She struggled upright, then turned to meet Maar's kiss. "I'm going with you" said Maar hoarsely.

"You don't have to, my darling, you can sleep until -- " began Pyosz. But Maar was trying to find her otos, and Pyosz realized they could not separate, not right now.

Because of Maar's help, despite the heavy yield from a maximum number of does who had just kidded and the new lovers' easy distraction into passionate clinches, they were done before full light. As Pyosz led the swollen herd and frolicking kids to pasture, she turned to Maar and said "I've always wondered why this is called a kissing gate." They found a place to lean safe from Molars' reach, though not Killer's bewildered scrutiny. By the time they were done, the sun was over the horizon.

Pushing her cart down the streets of Koldok side by side with Maar was a thrill for Pyosz. Kolm took one glance at them and began laughing. "Finally" she said. "Does this mean we'll have Thleen among us permanently, then?"

"It does" replied Maar fervently. They took extra cheese and yogurt with them, and stopped at the grocery only to deliver bread, no shopping. Still, it was enough time for Gitta and another customer to grin at each other knowingly about the new couple.

Lawa was in the tillage when they climbed up from the dock. She called out "There's oatmeal and sausage on the aga." Qala had also vacated the house for the orchard. Pyosz and Maar ate heaping plates but did not linger to even rinse them afterward. Qala had to scrub the oatmeal pot half an hour after lunch to get it clean. Her grumbling was mild.

copyright 2009 Maggie Jochild



Posting small updates throughout the day on my Twitter account, URL to the right.

The Invader (the sleep-destroying night tech) upped her ante this morning at 3:00 a.m., wearing perfume so strong it left me coughing.

UPDATE: Just spoke with Dr. Brode. He didn't mention discharge, again urged me to DC my Foley (told him I was considering it) and work hard at gaining endurance. For sure I will. So to me sounds like I'm here for today but the Evil Caseworker has not been heard from yet. Will she work on a Saturday, I wonder?


Friday, October 30, 2009


In the sci-fi novel I'm currently writing, my main character Pyosz has a growing love interest, Maar. I'm having a lot of fun shaping Maar into my own heart's desire. I've been aware that my buddy Blue, who is avidly reading/living each installment of the book, also has a desperate crush on Maar.

Blue called me yesterday to chat. After medical updates, amid kid interruptions on her end, I told Blue that Pyosz and Maar have been popping into my dreams, asking for action to proceed. I wondered if I could discuss a future plot point with Blue. I could hear the eagerness in her voice as she said "Absolutely."

So, in a serious tone, I asked if I should allow Pyosz and Maar to become fully lovers before Maar is tragically killed by leviathans (the monsters in my made-up world) or if it would be less cruel to have her die after they have shared only a kiss.

There was a ghastly silence over the phone. I couldn't keep from laughing, and confessed I was messing with her. Blue almost shrieked in relief and told me if she was near me she would smack me in the head for that. We laughed and laughed -- AS IF I'd do anything to my heartthrob Maar.

I can tell the lack of privacy and autonomy here, not to mention the constant doubt about whether I will be discharged before I can quite be safe on my own, is rubbing me raw.

The tech who comes at 3:00 a.m. to take my vitals throws open the door with a clatter, puts on the brightest light, and sings to herself loudly (and offkey) the whole time she is nearby. If I don't yell after her, she leaves my tray table (with phone, water and call button) out of my reach, the lights on and the door open. But when I do remind her, she acts offended.

I've tried to remind myself if how bored she must be, what the circumstances she might be contending with to make her so utterly devoid of empathy. Almost all the other night techs and nurses go out of their way to not awaken patients. However, at this point I simply hate her. I want her to never enter my sphere again.

There are too many people out there doing as much as they can to help me for me to actually feel sorry for myself. I have been saved in a spectacular fashion. But today is a hard day.

Yet another new PT just came to give me a workout. I'm now sitting up on a bedside toilet, waiting for lunch. I'm dizzy and sweaty. My abdominal binder is not in the right place and hurts a fair amount, but there's no point in trying to adjust it until I am prone again. I'm pushing my endurance as far as I can, to build it back. The PT says she will be back this afternoon to work on getting me to the point where I can wipe myself. Whether I can or not, no matter my endurance, it seems at least 50/50 that they will discharge me today -- the Good Doctor is off and the Evil Caseworker is seizing her chance.

We'll never have universal dignity and respect for individuals in our world until safety and well-being are uncoupled from income and class. Today I am sick and tired of being an object lesson. I want to lie down in the arms of someone who knows me and weep until I fall asleep, secure and seen.

Here's the nurse with a pain pill and lunch (fried fish, cornbread dressing, carrots). That will have to do for now.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

"Mama's On The Job"

The Nursing Home reviewed Maggie and said "No."

The Good Doctor is now (there was some question) IN CHARGE of Maggie. This Good Doctor makes the decision as to if/when Maggie will be discharged. Earlier today, while the Nursing Home was still up in the air he said, "If it were up to me you would not be discharged." Heh. Good things come to those who wait.

Once control of Maggie reverted back to the Good Doctor, i.e.: once the Nursing Home was no longer an option and thus the only option was keeping her in the hospital v. discharging her to home/the street, the Good Doctor took firm control and wrote orders consistent with his speaking earlier today (and the days before.) The wonderful part of this is, before it could have just been talk -- who knew, really? It isn't as if shining on a poor fat female patient costs you anything. To the contrary, with hospital finance breathing down his neck, the Good Doctor is putting his professional self at risk when he steps up and insists Maggie be cared for as if she were rich and had insurance. In doing so he demonstrates the value of the Hippocratic Oath. He's putting himself on the line for Maggie; she's a real person to him.

The Good Doctor wrote orders: 1. Maggie is to stay in the hospital till at least Friday (which not only means she can continue to get better, it means she can relax for a few days without worrying where she'll wake up the next morning); 2. Maggie is to have two (2) physical therapy sessions a day (double what she has now); 3. PT is to continue to note her ability to perform the functions of daily living (as she can't be discharged in the Good Doctor's view till Maggie can perform the functions of daily living...He said to her this morning, "I know you can't perform daily functions yet. If it were up to me you would not be discharged." And then everyone got the word it IS up to him *laughs* But really, thank the Gods it IS up to him. Just like University Hospital being on ER diversion, the Good Doctor being responsible for Maggie may well turn out to be one of those key turning points which we look back at and say, "This, this right here, this saved her life and/or made a HUGE difference in the final outcome"; 4. Reevaluate on Friday to see how Maggie is doing.

*is oh so happy*

Maggie requests a reliable person to run random errands in Austin; if you're that person, please contact Jesse Wendel.

Maggie's Mama has come through. 'Cause this morning we were damn sure either Maggie was going to a BAD nursing home (the one they were trying to send her to really blew; it was -- and is -- especially bad for bed sores and pneumonia. Not to mention it keeps screwing up patient meds and can't quite keep the sheets clean and sterile. All this according to the latest report I've read/of which I have a copy.) But charity-case Maggie wasn't good enough for the nursing home.

Or Maggie was going to be kicked out of the hospital entirely like to her home or the street and they didn't care where, which, given she can't even climb into bed after getting out to use the toilet and she doesn't have a bedside toilet, would have been an utter disaster. But that didn't happen either. We didn't (quite) panic. We kept cool and waited, waited for a miracle.

The closest we came to doing something is a) prepping y'all to make phone calls (thanks y'all) and b) when the Good Doctor stopped by yesterday while Maggie was on the phone with Liza, as Maggie got off she said, "That was Liza, a friend of mine from back East. She's checking in for this large group who want to know how I am." The doctor went, "Huh?" Maggie smiled and said, "Yeah. I'm a nationally known writer and blogger. People all over the United States are trying very hard to find out how I am. It's a really big deal." And then she dropped it and moved the conversation on. However, Maggie reports, she could see it got through. That was yesterday evening. And now today we have this. To be fair, he's always been the Good Doctor, being wonderful with Maggie, standing up for her. But in the last couple of days he's really come around, taking a clear stand for her in a way which he was not three or four days ago.

Maggie's in the hospital till at least Friday. *smiles -- is happy*

Cross-posted at Meta Watershed and Group News Blog.


Maggie Jochild Wednesday Quick Report

Fast report.

This may be the only report for today, not sure…

The hospital has asked a not-great nursing home to accept Maggie; the nursing home is evaluating her (either via a records review or perhaps in person, we’re not sure) which will probably take the rest of today and maybe even into tomorrow. Till we/the hospital get a yes/no on accepting Maggie from the nursing home, she’ll stay in the hospital. The odds are well into the 90th percentile she’ll be discharged, either to the nursing home (if they say yes) or to her home/the street (if the nursing home says no) within at most 24 hours of the nursing home saying one way or another, which could be as early as later today but more likely will be tomorrow morning.

While Maggie has half her stitches out and healing continues to go well, and while this morning she managed to get OUT of bed on her own, she could not get back IN to bed. In no way can she perform on her own the tasks of daily living. We now know who has the discharge authority yes/no over Maggie. We are sure he is under enormous pressure to discharge her from the financial people, even though she is clearly not ready to be on her own. Even so we are NOT going with the massive phone call storm to the hospital (which I mentioned over at DTWOF), at least not yet. We’re still waiting to see what the nursing home says; Maggie being accepted to the nursing home is the best bet.

Thank you for the emails and subscriptions. Please keep them coming $200, $100, $50, $20, $10, $5, mix and match. Maggie told me ten minutes ago to tell you how much she loves and appreciates you. And that she’s getting better each and every day. Later today she’s got a big PT workout. She has faith everything will work out.

For folks whom have asked about applications for welfare, Medicaid, and so on, good news (although it will take quite a while.) All of those applications are in or in the process of going in for Medicaid, welfare, and other appropriate programs.

The first time through, everyone gets turned down. But on the second application we are told, Maggie should be approved without much trouble.

The hospital is working closely with the person handling Maggie’s finances while she’s in the hospital, to see that this happens successfully. (It’s the only way for the hospital to get paid at all. They have a good track record with this as their own self-interest is at stake, so I’m quite optimistic in the long run.) In the short-run, Maggie has no money, no job till she’s well, so for the next two months we and the donations we raise for her are ALL that she has. *sighs*

Next time some damn Republican banker tells me that donations are the answer instead of government aid, I’m taking him to Austin and showing him Maggie as exhibit A. After two weeks of asking and begging and with Maggie being relatively well known nationally as these things go, we’re still only at half what she needs. And now the Republicans & Sen. Joe L (Ind-CT) are trying to blow up the Public Option on Health Care. Arrrrrgh!

Next update no later than tomorrow; sooner if there’s a major change. In the meantime, please contribute $200, $100, $50, $20, $10, $5, or in any combination.

Cross-posted at Meta Watershed and Group News Blog.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Swapping Class Lessons

Entitlement is a concept which has been misunderstood and criticized in feminist/liberation ideologies. It’s an attitude we are born with, as is altruism, but just as altruism has been distorted by American mythology into “self-sacrifice,” entitlement has become conflated with selfishness and arrogance.

An authentic sense of entitlement, however, is not selfish. If you believe there is enough to go around for everybody (which is possible when capitalism and Christianist lies are snipped from your brain,) and if you have achieved enough emotional maturity to love yourself/your community without depending on power imbalances for security, expressing entitlement is an act of mass social empowerment.

Unfortunately we have meager examples of what this actually looks like in our current government or pop culture representation. Those of us trying to define it for ourselves -- say, a fat crippled family-less poor dyke currently receiving high-level care as an indigent -- must stay in continuous conversation and exploration with those we trust to keep identifying the next best refinement of definition.

And of course the major obstacle to clarity about entitlement is class conditioning about which America is in deep denial.

I have been/am being kept afloat daily by a network of middle-class institutions, working-class smarts, and a few specific individuals who will not let go my hand.

One as you all know is Jesse Wendel, raised middle-class Mormon who used the military to escape LDS paranoia and family violence. This is not the most obvious ladder to use, but someone who can manage to stop panicking at the sounds of hounds in his own head long enough to carefully select the next solid-looking hummock can pick his way across any bog. Plus there is a basic Mormon value of service to the deserving, and if you buckle that onto a new template of who is “deserving” you get the Gilliard kind of liberal that Jesse is. His instance of my value was in my head when I finally staggered to the phone last week in the middle of the night and gave myself up to the machinery of possible public humiliation and loss of autonomy. I left the Gillchrist Peninsula; I hitched a ride west from the 9th Ward, into the care of strangers. But I knew Jesse would find me wherever I landed, and I acted like I mattered to everyone I met. To do so meant completely betraying my class training and my families’ choices.

Equally crucial has been Martha Chesnutt, my friend since 1980, who is handling all the finances and working on getting me disability long-distance from Atlanta. Martha and I lived together years ago and she has been the older sister I would have chosen for myself. Our ancestors arrived in North America via Jamestown, and our shared southern roots are tangled. Her line had been as consistently owning class as mine has been poor. But we came out into the crucible of lesbian-feminism where, despite revisionist rhetoric to the contrary, many of us learned to deal with class and race in a way I do not see being done as well now.

Martha is a class ally to me whom I trust more than anyone else on earth. She’s done the work, keeps doing it, translates across the boundary as earnestly as I do, and for over a year she paid my rent, until her own difficulties kept her from doing it any longer.

Martha and I also bore witness to one another as we each in turn fell in love with and partnered to women who, despite all efforts, became abusive. We stayed close friends as these long-term lover relationships degraded us and challenged our ability to self-love. Imperfectly, mentally, we figured out how to just have faith in one another despite watching the other make self-destructive choices. We somehow kept returning to “any difficulty I have with your difficulty is still my difficulty.” The friendship survived where all other connections did not.

I can tell Martha anything. However I use this gift sparingly, because I see the wound in her when she faces some of my reality.

Martha has refused to ever give up her sense of entitlement. She blazed a trail in that regard and continues to often take a machete to the underbrush a few yards ahead of me.

I once wrote in an essay that I felt like my family and I had been left for dead. I still feel that way about them – I mean, they are all dead now.

But because I’ve chosen to reassess every class lesson handed on to me by my people, rejecting toxic beliefs for those of the middle and owning classes where I could see the sense of it, I’m the survivor.

About a month before I called the paramedics, Martha said to me, with all the courage she could muster, that she was afraid I was repeating my mother’s pattern of hopelessness about individual survival. It was an extraordinarily difficult talk, but I have to admit the seeds she planted helped me call those paramedics instead of dying alone.

Thank you, Martha, Jesse, Liza, Genia, Kat. Thanks for getting close enough to see/hear my truth and letting me see yours so I might learn from it. Thank you out there who believe I matter.

And thank you to my family, for taking me as far as they could before their own sense of shame dragged them underwater.

Cross-posted at Meta Watershed and Group News Blog as dictated to Jesse by Maggie.


Maggie Jochild Still In Hospital Monday, Barely

Windows Netbook Donation Needed. Financial Donations Report!

Just a quick report as I’m in so much pain in my right hip I’m not at work today (this was written Monday afternoon, even if I’m posting it Tuesday morning.) Hurts to sit up, hurts to write. Hurts to do anything but sleep.

Maggie was NOT discharged over the weekend. One of the great things about the hospital she is in, is they apparently are big believers in what is called the TEAM Concept of Care. This means that in this hospital -- the best surgical hospital in Austin where the rich folks go for their surgeries if they don’t fly in their G-Vs to Houston -- unlike all the other hospitals which are not nearly as highly ranked nationally (oh yes, this hospital is NATIONALLY RANKED; what, you thought I’ve been pulling your chain, polishing your knob, yanking your Petunias, these last 10-12 days when I’ve told you Maggie is in the BEST surgical hospital in Austin? Oh, say it isn’t so Gentle Reader…)…unlike the other, not nearly as highly ranked nationally hospitals, the hospital our dear Maggie Jo lies recovering in, does everything in TEAMS. A Team consists of everyone involved in the medical care of a patient, plus a representative from the financial side of the house. Everyone gets a fairly equal voice in what should happen. This method of care compares to the less successful hospitals (so far as patient outcomes go) where the Doctors and the Finance People (and more and more it’s the Finance People) make the calls on what happens. Not so in the nationally ranked facility where Maggie is working so hard to recover.

That Maggie is working SO damn hard impresses the hell out of everyone. Today for example she walked 50 feet with a walker, her PT person right next to her to try and stop a fall just in case, but she made it! Totally wiped her out, she told me as 50 feet is an amazing (and very tough) distance for her to walk… Her stitches remain in (nope, the surgeon changed his mind last Friday and left them in. And today he decided to leave them in till at least Friday this week) with the Binder which is like a large corset still constricting her abdomen tightly keeping the surgical site intact, the stitches from coming out, and everything all good and clean and perfect.

Because Maggie is working so goddamn hard, because she’s working harder -- in the judgment of her nurses and the PT/OT and respiratory folks – all of the aforementioned TEAM members and even some of her doctors are all LOUDLY saying, do NOT discharge Maggie. Why, they say?

“Maggie has no support, no one to take care of her. If we discharge her for, let’s face it, financial reasons” -- and they glare at the financial guy who is pretty much coming around to see things from our side anyway, but they still glare at him we’re told – “we’re only going to see her again inside days to a week when her sutures come loose, the incision bursts open (the surgeon gets all stuffy at this point), she gets a massive infection and that’s if her insides do not spill out all over the floor, and of course with the massive infection she’ll get an even larger fever and become dehydrated. Hell, she isn’t even able, no, scratch that, she is UNABLE to even get in and out of bed by herself let alone make it to the toilet. Without any money to hire a nursing aide, no charity bed for rehab for the hardest working most deserving patient any of us have seen in forever. How can we possibly expect Maggie, with a Foley Catheter in place no less, to take care of her self all alone? It’s impossible! Hummph!”

This opinion is slowly gaining weight in the TEAM approach. *smiles*

On the other hand, finance still wants her out, although he’s being less adamant about it all. That said, there is a genuine, real chance Maggie may be discharged Tuesday. No promises or predictions one way or the other. It could go one way or the other. *sighs* I’m not going to panic. We will see and what happens will happen. But I think (and hope and pray) we have enough medical weight on our side, that with the TEAM being pretty damn pissed off at this point about Maggie’s overall condition, that a discharge won’t happen till Maggie’s truly ready. Furthermore, Maggie is ready to very respectful and appreciatively, strike, should anyone try to kick her out before her body is at least able to handle the basics of living alone: getting in and out of bed without ripping her stitches out (including NOT straining her abdomen which her PT person insists upon, as does her surgeon); since she doesn’t have a pull thingy above her bed to haul herself in and out of the bed with, that will be hard; cleaning herself; going to the toilet. Also walking to the kitchen; watching back from the kitchen; making a meal; feeding the cat; going all the way from her bedroom to the front door, getting groceries, taking them to the kitchen and putting them away before the cold stuff rots, then getting back in bed, all without falling over and hurting herself or ripping out her stitches or splitting open her abdomen.

If she can not do ALL these simple acts of daily living, she can not go home. Are they going to send her to live on the street under a newspaper? Seriously; what do they intend to do, send her to die, now that they have saved her life?

As she keeps telling people, “I live with a cat but she can NOT change my Foley.”

Financially Maggie and I and Martha (who is handling the money) deeply appreciate the money given so far. We are roughly at half-way. So far slightly under two-thousand dollars have been donated. We need to raise four thousand. $4K allows Maggie two months off work, the medicines she needs, some healthier foods, some (but not all) of the durable medical equipment she needs such as a pull thing above her bed. Plus paying rent electric, water, food, cat food, taxi rides for outpatient, a little home health care, and so on. The absolute bare minimum with zero margin for error and no reserve (and ya always need a reserve; this number doesn’t have one) for the bare minimum she’ll need if everything goes perfectly (and there are always fuck-ups (this assumes no fuck-ups at all) is $4 grand cash in emergency donations/additional subscriptions. It does NOT include any subscriptions/donations existing prior to Wednesday 12 days ago when Maggie went to the hospital. We’re assuming all of those remain intact. If any of those get canceled, we’ll need more money. On the other hand, half way there, pretty much. So hey, far out and good work everyone! And we have a little room to breathe. It isn’t as if we need to have all the money tomorrow. We needed a bunch of money last Friday as we thought she was being thrown out Friday or Saturday, which would mean we’d have to hire a nursing aide right then as we had no bed for her and there was no way she could go back home. So we were going to put her, well, never mind. The point is, we now have a little more room. So please, take a deep breathe, congratulate yourself and everyone else on the great job we’re all doing so far.

Then, dig down and please donate more. We’ve got $2,000 and change to go. *laughs* If you haven’t donated yet, heh, opportunity! We're asking people to contribute from as little as $5 to $10 monthly, to $20 or $50, and for a few of you, all the way up to $100 or $200 a month.

Coming up still today, another post from Maggie. It’s amazing. I think one of the best pieces of writing she’s ever done. (I feel like a link in a chain, smuggling the writings of a renowned Russian writer out of the prison camps to the West. And honored to take her dictation.)

Ahhh… Maggie needs a Netbook Computer. She has NO Internet access. Getting her a Netbook so she can surf, email, and write whenever SHE wants to, not have to write by hand and then dictate to me, is able to check in on her friends and their posts, can check in at GNB and Meta when she wants… She’s cut off from her WORLD. It would mean the world to her if we can get her access restored.

Can someone please, please, pretty please with love and strawberries and real sugar on top please donate an inexpensive Microsoft compatible Netbook to Maggie? (Not even a laptop. She doesn’t have the strength to hold a laptop.) It needs to be SO light that really only a wireless-enabled Netbook will do plus also a Netbook is the right form factor. Even a very light-weight laptop would be too big; she wouldn't be able to balance it, and a telephone would be a new OS to learn plus you really can't browse on them. She needs precisely what I'm requesting and not anything else. Please.

Note: I don’t mean to offend any of y’all whom are huge Mac fans. -- I’m writing this on a MacBook and can hardly stand the wait till January for the new Apple Tablet, but that’s not important right now – I also don’t mean to offend fans of other OSes such as various Unixes. The thing is Maggie only knows Windows. Period. Full stop. In her current mental state -- able at her current best to think two perhaps three hours ahead when she isn’t physically wiped out which is much of the time, and she can handle perhaps five minutes ahead then -- I am NOT absolutely NOT pressing her in any way not critical to her health. An OS holy war is not critical to her health. OS discussion ends here.

Maggie needs a Windows-version Netbook computer. Having one will give her autonomy in a major way. This will make an ENORMOUS difference for Maggie in her physical recovery as well as her mental recovery (having to work with the keys will help her physical recovery; working with the thinking and writing and her peeps and writing again will deeply assist her mental recovery.)

If you can donate a Netbook, please email Jesse Wendel.

Thank you.

Again, please donate and get your friends to donate. Please contribute $200, $100, $50, $20, $10, $5, or in any combination. If you have a blog or know people with blogs, get the word out about Maggie. Link, link, link.

Anything I can do to help get the word out, be in touch.

Thank you all so much for your support. And bless all of you for that support. You mean the world to Maggie and myself.

Knowing you are there has on many a day, gotten me up and out of bed, I tell you true. Often it seems strange to me that me, big bad-ass Jesse, who walked through the toughest ghettos in the United States for almost a decade with nothing but a med kit, backboard, oxygen bottle and defibrillator, and a gurney. And my 90 pound gurrrrl partner (who could kick YOUR ass any day, twice a day on weekends, three times on pay-day weekends) could be brought to bed by pain. But it never, ever, ever stops. Even when I take LOTS of drugs, even then it doesn’t stop; it is simply overwhelmed and then the drugs usually overwhelm me also. It’s impossible to find positions not also painful. The best is this wonderful chair at work. In it I can sit for many hours and work and work and work. At home on my bed I’m able to roll this way and that, and to watch comedy shows which by making me laugh, reduce the pain. Sometimes I can sleep and then I don’t hurt, briefly, till I wake up, which I do every three hours around the clock to take pain meds. No, I don’t set an alarm. The old meds wear off and that wakes me up.

Here’s my point. In the midst of this, especially in the last two and a half years since my friends and I started Group News Blog, some days what has got me up when normally I’d have stayed in bed and wept, stayed in bed and tried to sleep, stayed in bed and watched television, or stayed in bed and read or done anything but moved a fraction more than I absolutely must (on what I call a BAD pain day, like today for example when I didn’t go to work as it felt as if someone had stuck a steel bar deep into my right hip and was bouncing bouncing bouncing up and down on the bloody thing with the blunt end quivering deep in my hip bone to the point where the scale I balance on is overdosing my meds v. screaming) and on some days precisely like today when normally I’d simply stay in bed and weep and pray for the day to end, on some of those days over the past two and a half years I have gotten up because I knew YOU were there, waiting for me to write, waiting for me to post, even just waiting for me to go check the PO Box and pick up a letter I knew was coming. So I got up and got to it. Sucked it up. Because of you.

You readers are the gift who quite literally, day after day after day, I get out of bed for because of you. If not for you, just as years ago when I was suicidal, then it was my four children whom I lived for, now I get out of bed and go enter into life because to do otherwise would be to fail to serve you.

The last eight to ten months (since shortly after the inauguration) have been very hard for me, physically. And I’m not fully back by any means.

But with Maggie needing me, with readers from GNB all of a sudden writing me and my needing to write them back, with other GNB writers suddenly writing again and the blog starting to pick up again (as I’ve said all along it would start to do about a year before the 2010 election) and with the joy of my writing posts for GNB all of a sudden descending upon me like grace from above, like how I feel after a wonderful bicycle ride with my daughters or son, I can only say that for the last eleven to twelve days, as totally wiped out as I’ve been each day, as utterly drained as I’ve been each day, I’ve been more ALIVE this past almost two weeks than at any time in the past eight to ten months of lying in bed in pain. Now I’m up and about (and in pain) but at least I’m about and out in the world (and in pain.) The fucking pain part does not change. But at least I’m out and in the world and alive.

Thank YOU (all of you, but I really mean YOU, the one reading this right now) for the wonderful gift to me which you are. And for everything which you are to Maggie, and for all which you do to her.

Speaking of which -- because this is how all posts right now must end, *smiles* -- please subscribe/donate to Maggie as much as you can afford: $200, $100, $50, $20, $10, $5, mix and match.

Also, I request you, Gentle Reader, donate a Windows Netbook for Maggie within 24 hours. Contact Jesse Wendel.

Thank you.

Oh yeah… Within a hour, a post from Maggie. *grins*

 Cross-posted at Meta Watershed and Group News Blog.