Novak (novak) wrote,

Personal--A Long Absence; Over The Rhine in Madison

Well, it has been a while.

It's the third? Man! I'm not even keeping track of current days very well. Long story short: around the end of September, I began to grow a lovely abscess right on top of my surgical area from the summer. Slowly, over the next few months, the little bastard grew and as it did so, my strength lessened and lessened. Symptoms were more like a flu at first, and then awful, awful pain began in my surgical area--I got to the point at the beginning of November where I just spent three hours a day screaming in pain: not part of the Ph.D. design!--and we were unable to determine, despite a number of examinations, what exactly the complication was. Things began to disappear from my schedule as I was force to prioritize and prioritize again. LiveJournal became more than I could handle in November, somewhere. I made it to the end of the semester, and only then had to throw in the towel, begging off on finishing my final projects for my two seminars until the beginning of the spring semester. We had since figured out the nature of the problem, and I'd had yet another surgery right before Thanksgiving to fix it, but I was so flattened by the surgery that I had more-or-less gone back to where I was in late June in the course of my year-long recovery from the main surgery: that is, my academic-level thinking was being somewhat impaired. I knew I'd do better with time to recover. I still did some stupid things, like catching a great Over the Rhine concert at Luther's Blues in Madison on December 7th with beyondthewell--my first time hanging with someone I'd met in journaland--which was great for the music, but absolutely insane for me to do in the middle of such a touchy recovery.
The set list was something like:
Silent Night
Faithfully Dangerous
Hometown Boy
Long Lost Brother
Anything At All
All I Ever Get for Christmas Is Blue
Jingle Bells
Hush Now (Stella's Tarantella)
Little Blue River/In The Garden
The World Can Wait
Changes Come

My Love Is a Fever
Paper Moon
Since then, however, I've been having to deal with drug complications: for some weeks my drugs--supposed to slow down and normalize the digestive process since I now lack a colon--had been doing nothing. We changed the dosage and got the control we wanted. The catch was, I am in twisting, writhing agony as I digest food. That being something of a dis-incentive, I dropped down to a mere 114 pounds at one point and am simply trying to regain my weight and my strength now. Not easy. I thought it was supposed to be easy to gain weight in this country, but damn if I can figure out how to do it! In the meantime, I'm in ongoing contact with my nurse practitioner and surgeon back in Milwaukee, trying to figure out how to get rid of this constant pain while still getting the positive benefits of the medication. Something's gotta go right eventually, right?

So now I'm resting and recuperating in the generous hospitality of Kevin Fleming and his fiance Frannie's new house out in Jackson, Wyoming. It has snowed since I got here and I have yet to actually be able to see the Grand Tetons because the sky is always in the midst of a great white-out. I'll be out here through the 9th and then we head to South Bend and Notre Dame to get ready for the wedding on the 15th. We've hung out with the Biolchini's--Fran's family--a number of times, as they were out here for the holidays, and we'll see them in a week or so in the Bend. I'm just trying to take advantage of the opportunity to heal in the quiet, and to go on earning the title of Best Man as I talk Kevin and Frannie through their respective jitters.

Hello to all of you I've not been in much contact with and hopefully I'll be around a bit more as time passes. Peace!
Tags: friends-marquette era, friends-notre dame era, livejournal, over the rhine, personal, setlists, travel-2004-2005 wyoming

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