My life, in three words

Dialysis: My life revolves around the needle and the machine. Three days a week, first thing the morning, I get stuck with two needles. One has my blood going in, one has my blood coming out. And for four hours I sit, sometimes napping, most times staring out into space, sometimes reading, sometimes listening to music or podcasts. Four hours I wait, watching the clock like Fred Flintstone, while the machine filters the toxins out of my blood. Then a half an hour both to stick me and to disconnect me. Half an hour to and from the place. Six hours, three days a week.

Work: Three other days a week, I work for ten hour days. Luckily, it’s not a totally stressful job, where I have to take it home on the days I don’t work. I moved my office to the third floor because the cellar was freezing in the winter (50 degrees, and no heat). Good thing about it, I now have heat. The bad thing? (Or maybe it’s a good thing,) I can’t snack as much as I used to because the kitchen is in the basement/cellar, and my office had been right off the kitchen, in a refurbished “pantry”. After last year’s Purge cleared out the pantry, I had more room for the computer and papers and a chair. But it was cold, even with a space heater.

Sleep: The final day of the week, Sunday, is a day of rest. And I mean rest. I’ve timed that I can sleep for 12 hours. If I sleep after seven a.m. on Sunday, I’m up until at least nine p.m. Sunday night, when my usual bed time is around six or seven p.m. Then I’m up at 4:30 Monday morning to start it all over again.

This week is a little different, in that I have dialysis on Monday and Tuesday. Last Saturday I couldn’t have it because my access, the port where they plug in the needles, was clotted with blood. I have to go to a special out patient procedure to get the clot cleared out. Supposedly, according to the nurses at the dialysis center, they put a balloon in my graft to expand the area and get the clot to flow. But where does the clot go?

I have been worried sick about this. My OCD has kicked into overdrive when I’m wondering whether or not I’ll have a stroke or a blood clot to the brain. My blood clots well, sometimes too well; which I don’t understand since I have anemia.

Writing: I’m trying to write daily, but it’s been such a chore that I’m lucky if I can get a hundred words a day out. The story I’m writing is one that I’m interested in, but it’s testing my memory. It takes place in 1974 Providence, RI, during the height of the organized crime gangs in the area.

I’m wracking my brain about whether things existed in 1974. Remote controls? No. Lids on paper cups? They didn’t have that, or hot paper cups, either. Styrofoam. Aluminum can Budweiser? Nope, bottles. Recyclables? Are you kidding me? Smoking in bars? Yep. Drinking on the job? Yep. Weed, meth, heroin? Yep, yep, yep (though meth wasn’t what it is now–it was speed, then).

My goal is to get it done by the end of the summer, so that it’s available for RI Comicon (Yes, we’re going this year, November 6-8.). There will be no magic involved in the story, which means I have to make my protagonist very crafty. He will be. He has a lot of secrets to hide.