<<reverse | forward>> | index |  beginning
The Colon

Sun, Apr 15, 2001 11:31AM -0600

My pattern-recognition abilities are off-kilter--much too sensitive. But drastic life changes resonate, and I worry about the undue stability in my life. Yes, I admit it. I am a chronic worrier. Somebody get me some valium.

But I think about my parents this Easter Sunday (on which seven years ago I was in a car accident, another story which I might relate later). I don't know if it's because they're both health care professionals (my dad's a doctor, my mom's a nurse) or if it's because they are just warped, but they have the most disturbing conversations sometimes.

My mom used to get really bad headaches. She suspected they were probably due to her dependency on caffeine, but they persisted, and since she is also a chronic worrier, she began to wonder about what else it might be.

My dad immediately suggested that it was an aneurysm in the brain.

My mom laughed. Well maybe you're right. It might be an aneurysm and I could die any moment.

My dad told her that maybe she should think about having it checked out, if she felt like. He says this all casually.

My mom responded that if it's an aneurysm, there's very little you can do about it, and she'd rather not know so she wouldn't have to worry. She wouldn't mind not knowing and just dying randomly one day.

They were laughing the whole time they were having this conversation.

And it's just strange how easily my mom talks about the anomaly in her breast which everyone who has examined her figures is probably benign, as far as they can tell. This is the sort of thing that might make a layperson hysterical, I would imagine. Hell, I worry about this weird cyst-like thing embedded in my cheek.

And it's strange how my dad talks about how he keeps having blood in his stool--red blood, not black, thankfully, but he then goes on to say that it's probably a polyp, possibly malignant, and then talks about the different kinds of malignant polyps, and says that if they find one on him, he won't even consider surgery. As far as he can tell, the prognosis is pretty much the same--slow and painful death--whether or not he has the surgery, so why bother?

Now you might understand where I get my fatalism and morbid sense of humor.

But it got me thinking (what with people talking about marriage and having kids to the left and to the right of me). I love my dad. I love my mom, too, but that goes without saying. But the way my mom and my dad are, I grew up thinking that dads are different. Complex creatures, with bizarre past histories, dirty rotten secrets. Now I'm well aware that moms can have these too--just not my mom. I guess what I'm trying to say is that my relationship with my dad seems a lot more complicated than my relationship with my mom.

But that's really only if I try to think about it and unravel all the threads of the story. I think I have pretty good relationships with both my parents, and I think, now that all they really have is each other, their relationship is getting pretty good too. It's about time.

In any case, even though I rant and rave about the high probability of me never getting married, I would like to have kids. Now, I am constantly reminded by the most unlikely people that I don't need to get married in order to have kids, but I would surely prefer it that way. That way I wouldn't have to reinvent the wheel, you know?

So what I wanted to say is this: I want my mom and my dad to live to see grandchildren. This is something I think I really missed growing up...not in the sense of having lost it, but in the sense of never really having it. I only saw my grandparents when I was three years old...they lived in the Philippines and died there. Only my paternal grandfather ever came to visit "The States" and he apparently didn't like it here. My dad says it's because when you're old, you get used to your surroundings, and anything different just gets aggravating, but my dad is a self-professed compulsive liar so I always take whatever he says with a grain of salt no matter how innocuous. Heh. For all I know (being six or seven years old at the time, I think), he just up and threw his old man out. <g>

So yeah, that's my wish right now. To have kids who can find out first hand how bizarre my parents are.

<<reverse | forward>> | index |  beginning