Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Favorite Son

My mom had her biopsy today. It could be tomorrow or three days or even longer before we know anything. This has hit me a lot harder than I ever expected. In fact I'm amazed at how rough the last several days have been. I ain't much for whining or crying, but I can definitely be one angry mother fucker. I have to make a conscious effort to take it easy on Jen and the kids. On top of everything else, my new secret agent type job has decided to tone it down for a while. I was too good. I think I scared them with my abilities, they want to reassess the situation. So I have picked up some work with a old friend from high school. I'm now in the remodeling business. We start the house tomorrow or Wednesday, that and the fact that I don't want to stray too far from mom, means I wont get to meet Inanna and Zelda tomorrow. That really sucks. Anyway I'm not sure how good my company would have been, because I'm still not right in the head.

There's a subject in the news a lot lately that hits close to home for me. I have read a lot of blogs about it, but I've avoided leaving any comments until I read this one. It's one of the better blogs I have read about Terri Schiavo. You might want to check it out.


Eleven years ago, my mom was laying in a hospital bed, suffering from chronic smokers disease. Her hands had turned black and she had lost the ability to move them. She was unaware of her surroundings due to the morphine, she had no idea of anything for that matter. My two older brothers were there, I was in New Jersey without much hope of getting to Texas. The doctor had told my brothers the only chance she had was a double amputation. The two dumb asses agreed to it. That was their first mistake, the second mistake was calling me and telling me about it.

I called Dr. M, he had been my mom's doctor for years, he had even treated me several times over the years. So he new me and he new I meant business.

Trashman: "Dr. M?"
Dr.M: "Hello Trashman. Is there anything I can help you with?"
Trashman: "Did you tell my brothers that you have to amputate my mom's hands?"
Dr.M: "Yes I did. It's the only way I can save her life."
Trashman: "Are you sure?"
Dr.M: "Pretty sure."
Trashman: "Well regardless of what those two idiots tell you, I'm telling you don't amputate."
Dr.M: "They're the ones here and they both said amputate. It seems you are out voted and I can't really go by what you say since they're here and you're not."
Trashman: "Then go by this. If you amputate her hands, it will be the last surgery you do. I will come back to Texas and amputate your hands, I can do the time but my mom can't lose her hands."
Dr.M: "Now Trashman, I know you're upset but threats aren't going to help the situation."
Trashman: "Dr.M., this is not a threat. I will and I mean WILL come to Texas and cut off your fucking hands."
Dr.M: "You don't seem to understand, if I don't amputate, she's going to die."
Trashman: "Yeah well if you do amputate, she's going to die anyway. She can't live without her hands. She can't be a burden on anybody. So let her die in one piece. Let her die with her hands. Let her die."

Those were the hardest words I ever said in my life. I turned to Jen and broke down. I've never shed a tear over anyone or any thing in my life (well not after I turned eight,anyway).

My brothers both called screaming and yelling. They wanted to know why the doctor refused to do the surgery. They wanted to know what I said to him. I told them both to kiss my ass. A few days later the doctor called me back and said he found a new experimental drug. He said in theory it would go through her blood stream and dissolve any clots. If they injected it into her hands it should dissolve the clots and the blood returning to her hands should save her hands and her life. The only thing he needed was my permission to try an experimental drug on her. I had successfully pushed stupid and stupider out of the loop. I faxed him the permission slip and he began treatment.

The only thing I remember about the drug was it cost $3000.00 per vial. They injected three vials per hand three times a day for a month. That's $1,620,000.00 not including regular hospital charges. Thank God, she was a state employee with great insurance, that and the fact that the drug company ate the fees since the drug was experimental.

One month after I doomed her to death, my mom walked out of the hospital. The doctor told her if she ever smoked another cigarette it would kill her. She managed to stay smoke free for a year and a half. Then one day she found an old pack in her desk. The first thing she thought was "I wonder if one more would kill me?" Then she lit it up.

After she found out what my two brothers had done she was really pissed. She now has a DNR sitting on her kitchen table at all times. My mom has four son's. I'm the only one without a high paying career, I'm the only one that doesn't own a house or new car. I'm the only one that didn't finish high school. If you ask her, she'll tell you I'm the only one with a lick of sense.

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