Last night, I couldn’t sleep.
My brother died of ALS in February 2008, after blogging almost daily about his illness following his diagnosis in December 2003. I began blogging about caregiving in a companion blog during the final year before his death. I called my blog Rat in the Walls.
After he died, I stopped posting and let the rats fall silent.
In May 2014, I finally revisited the site for the first time since his death, and I posted this:
When I first started on Blogger, my handle was Ratty, maintaining anonymity so that in my Rat in the Walls blog I could write about my brother’s fatal illness without giving away his identity. Under that pseudonym, I could voice things I couldn’t elsewhere. Rats thrive in the dark. ::: Now, five years after his death in 2008, I’m coming out of the walls and reclaiming my humanity.
I didn’t reread any of my posts in 2014. Too soon.
Now, in May 2017, I’m ready to reread them.
So, here’s the project: as I open each post and look at it for the first time since my brother died, I’m going to make a video recording in which I read the post aloud and say something about it.
I don’t remember much about the posts, except the following:
- They are short.
- Some of them state a brief lesson about caregiving that I learned that day.
- Some of them respond implicitly to the post that my brother made in his blog that day or a preceding day.
Here’s a link to the video I made last night while looking at the first post.
The original blog post says:
Title: Knock Knock
Scurrying, nibbling, hiding. That’s the Rat in the Walls. Knocking about at night, avoiding the light, coveting the cheese.
You only see the leavings: the dry little kernels that trace Rat’s passage through your cupboards; the holes gnawed behind your stove. The fruits of your labor, tooth-marked, scattered.
The Rat lurks in your back brain.