Sunday, 13 October 2013 12:42

That Which Does Not Kill Us......

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....., makes us stronger. Blah blah blah. Sometimes these helpful, encouraging phrases do just that - help and encourage. Sometimes, depending which side of the conversation you are on, can be annoying at best. Like most well-meaning humans, I too am much better about dishing out sage advice than having it spoon fed to me by others. Like an infant, if I don't like it I spit it out. As I sit here typing this blog on a break from working on a major overhaul of our website, I thought about a few diseases and serious medical issues that appear in the rear view mirror as some of the "best things that ever happened to me." Put that in your pipe and smoke it Dr. Phil.

BAD: In the late 90's I came down with a case of Hepatitis A. I have a sense of its origin story but will never know for sure. Gross I know, but don't judge me. Shit happens. And in this case, oh never mind.  Gross. Anyway, I was very very sick. I hope I never feel as bad or as weak as I did during this time. It was awful. I could barely lift my head or body without feeling woozy. I was too weak to even stay in my apartment and had to go stay in my parents basement for a week until I sprung myself. I was managing a restaurant at the time and while no breakout occurred amonst staff or customers, all employees earned a shot courtesy of my and the St. Louis County Health Department. I assume this was long before the laptop scandal. It was a few months afterwards before I really felt like myself again, plus I used up a few weeks of vacation/sick time.

GOOD: During this time off from work I got a killer tan at the tiny pool in my apartment complex. I looked pretty good. Mot importantly was my impulse decision to buy my first computer. In a few short weeks while quarantined in my tiny U. City dwelling, I taught myself how to use the computer, AOL, surfing the internet, and basic HTML web design. I have used that skill set almost daily over the past decade, both in my personal life and especially at work. Once I am done with this blog I will be going back to a major day of web work for the 2013 St. Louis International Film Festival website. 

BAD: From May of 2011 until just recently I was undergoing chemotherapy and radiation therapy for a rare form of throat cancer. I have written and blogged about it before and am actually tired of thinking about it, dealing with it, and paying for it. It's gone, I am done with treatments, and I am all better.

GOOD: I was better until a well-meaning friend and business associate pointed out over lunch that I look better than I have in over a decade and that cancer has certainly agreed with me. I took the compliment and let it go. I wanted to say "That's what your mom said," but on second thought realized that he is older than me and therefore so would his mom. This would not work out for any number of reasons. Figure it out.

BAD: The cancer is gone, but the chemo pushed me over the edge into the land Diabetes Type II.

GOOD: Not the end of the world, but the end of most sugary things for me. Healthy body and healthy mind, yo. One could argue about the true state of my interesting mind, but at least my body is in really much better shape. 

So the next time something horrible happens to me medically, let me find the silver lining first before you offer me some fortune cookie advice.