Here I am again, reading and commenting on the sixth post from Rat in the Walls, the blog I wrote during the final year of my brother’s battle with ALS. The post is titled “Empathic Alchemy,” and you can read it below the video.
Title: Empathic Alchemy
Blood is sometimes thicker than gold.
Posted in Caregiving, Video, Writing
Tagged ALS, caregiving, changing yourself, empathy, enduring, fatal illness, rat in the walls, sibling relationship, understanding, writing
Here’s the fifth Rat in the Walls post that I wrote about my brother’s battle with ALS. The post is titled “Gravity on Jupiter.” You can read the text of the post below the video.
Title: Gravity on Jupiter
Sisyphus had it easy.
He had control of his muscles. And he only had to push his rock uphill on Earth.
People with ALS don’t have that. It’s like Jupiterean gravity is squashing them flat.
Their rocks aren’t moving anywhere, up or down the gravity well.
Long time, no posts, because June disappeared in a fog of caregiving for my Mom and Dad. Now that it’s July, it’s time for another reading from Rat in the Walls, where I blogged about my brother’s battle with ALS during the last year of his life. The actual post (from April 1, 2007), is printed below the video.
Paranoia runs deep. But it doesn’t run well.
It gimps along, lurching from side to side, like Frankenstein’s monster.
Jaundiced skin. Beautiful eyes.
What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the word “writing”?
“Creation, exploration, discover, joy, hope.”
–Rosalie Dobbs (Writer)
“My writing desk in my office; four bookcases overflowing with books.”
–Daphne Chennault (Author)
“Telling stories either ‘professionally’ or for fun, like fan fiction.”
Sheryl R. Hayes (Author)
Alterna-Teas (short story in anthology)
“I want to do it right now.”
–Adrienne Foster (Author)
Bay Area Ghost Hunters
“‘Writing’ is first. 🙂 Then, ‘waking.’ Waking up and writing. Right after a pot of coffee.”
–James Beach (Author)
Two-Fisted Jesus Tales
Posted in Questions, Writing
Tagged Adrienne Foster, Alterna-Teas, bay area ghost hunters, chief thief, daphne chennault, James Beach, question, rosalie hobbs, Sheryl R. Hayes, Two-Fisted Jesus, writing
What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the word “fan”?
“The abbreviation of FANATIC! Perhaps not the most knowledgeable, but likely to be the most passionate. (And perhaps not quite sane.)”
–Anonymous fan at BayCon 2017
East Bay Linux Users Group at eblug.org
“A small piece of equipment that has blades which spin and move air.”
–Anonymous fan at BayCon 2017
–Jean Martin (costumer, editor-in-chief, dancer, singer, actor, photographer)
At my final panel yesterday, we talked about love in dystopian society (including failed romances like the one in 1984) and the importance of relationships and community in wartime.
For myself, the discussion suddenly went meta: being at BayCon, in this IDIC atmosphere, an enclave of loving and diverse relationships that contrasts so sharply with the current state of U.S. politics–right there, in the middle of the panel, I found I had made a decision. I need to work on Red Hand.
Red Hand tells the story of an older woman with the rare ability to heal individuals dying of a galactic-wide plague that’s been decimating populations for decades, causing wars, disrupting civilizations, and encouraging isolationism. The woman and others who possess the healing ability are themselves oppressed by those who see them as a source of power and wealth, or as means to stabilize chaos, or as a threat that must be properly regulated and controlled.
At the beginning of the novel, we see the woman in crisis. She has little of herself left to give, drained by decades spent healing others while on the run from the Red Hand, an apparently benign paternalistic organization sanctioned by the remnants of the galactic government to regulate healers. She longs for a permanent home, to live in a community without fear of discovery. But she can’t have that if she continues to heal.
People will die if she stops healing.
If she doesn’t stop, she will die without having lived a life of her own.
In this moment of personal crisis, forced to flee yet another impending capture on yet another planet, she takes passage on a small spaceship captained by a man with secrets of his own on a mission that poses a direct threat to her dreams.
He’s a good guy. He has reasons.
But he’s out to capture a healer.
Here is the second video from Rat in the Walls.
For the original post (the second on the Rat in the Walls blog), look below the video.
Title: Body Blocking
His illness is written on my body.
Eating excessively for the past six months, I’ve gained forty pounds, accumulating layers of fat. I tie my intestines in square knots, turn my emotions into sausages, blocking, holding on.
As if I become heavy enough, weighty enough, I might anchor him in place.