The social worker came in today and sat with me and made sure I understand what will be happening on Wednesday when they remove my stomach. She brought in a pamphlet about bariatric surgery and the recommendations for a person have a total gastrectomy are relatively similar. She also brought me in a pamphlet about a Living Will and Advanced Directive, she went through this one with me, sitting on the edge of my bed touching my hand, but I don’t remember one single word she said. “Living Will”? You mean, like, if something goes wrong do I want to survive via machines or be removed from any life saving devices and allow “nature to take its course”? Wow.
For a 33 year old, mother of two, daughter of two amazing parents, sister to an inspiring brother, friend to only a few and fiancé of the most beautiful creature….this is a hard decision. The social worker told me it’s always a good idea to plan for the worst….blah, blah, blah. All I had nearby was a paper towel, I wanted to write something clever, but I can only manage some scribbling about my most precious experiences, things that caused me the most pain and the things that I did to myself to damage my, otherwise healthy, body.
The following is my ‘Living Will’. Fuck that paperwork, that’s not me. If I can’t write it my own way then I won’t write it at all. My brain is on overload and I’m having my own little pity-party at this moment, so I apologize for the dramatics….
The most painful things: The loss of my Mimi The feel of a rapist's hand on my thigh A marriage of convenience Jokes at my expense due to obesity A slap from my mother Fighting with my best friend A punch from someone I thought loved me The way "I hate you" sounds A man stealing money from his children Being called "the worst mother alive" Hating myself for no reason The feeling of absolute despair The ways I chose to deal with pain: Alcohol, in excess Sleeping pills Breaking the heart of an innocent man Pain medication (Vicodin, Percocet, etc) Binging and Purging Directing my pain onto my children Reckless spending Adultery, in most cases out of spite Aleve…lot and lots of this Unhealthy eating habits The best reasons to be alive: I have air in my lungs Marijuana My beautiful son, Jordan My "mother hen", Annabelle Led Zeppelin That feeling of falling in love My family, Mom, Dad, Scott My best friends, loyal to the end, Brandi and Mike My beautiful nieces, my nephew Trevor I'm not ready for the unknown Last, certainly not least, my Shane, my savior My wishes IF I die: Mom & Dad, love my children Brandi, make sure the girls love The Boondock Saints Jordan, be amazing! Be AMAZING! Annabelle, you shine brighter than you know, light up the world! If a machine is breathing for me, turn it off Don't keep me on machines hoping for a miracle, please If my brain isn't working, I won't work, let me go Don't wear black, do NOT bury me in anything pink Shane: Remember me, but only 2-4 times a day You're allowed to love someone else, minimally Remember Baltimore, the moment we both knew Don't let my children go to him, they will drown in sadness Tell stories about me Know that I loved you with EVERY part of me still alive I pray that this is not the end of our story, search for me Lastly, most important, know I'm with you and I'll find you again.