Archives for the Month of September, 2011

Hospital Food

Lunch / Library of Congress

Lunch / Library of Congress

The inpatient hospital food was such that my mother brought hummus sandwiches to my bedside for lunch every day.

Jodie Foster

Funny Side / Library of Congress

Funny Side / Library of Congress

In the hospital they asked me what month it was. The correct answer was July.

I said, “Jodie Foster.”

If the words coming out of your mouth are not what you intend, who’s talking?

Bad for You

Funnel Cake / Library of Congress

Funnel Cake / Library of Congress

In the rehab hospital, I graduated to a daylong neuro program, sleeping at home but coming to therapy during the day. Patients in the program were sent to the hospital cafeteria for lunch. My parents saw the lunch and were perplexed. Much of food was bad for you, what the patients probably shouldn’t have been eating: fried catfish, french fries, candy bars. But the neuro patients didn’t mind. We had all lost so much weight. We gobbled down everything and enjoyed it.

Pity the Supermodel

Model 1928 / Library of Congress

Model 1928 / Library of Congress

I was out for many weeks in the hospital. I didn’t eat much and became really skinny. This period is the closest I have ever been to supermodel gaunt. I now know that it must be very difficult for supermodels to sit on hard chairs. When you are so bony, there isn’t much softness on your rear end. Pity the supermodel.

Fashion Show

Fashion Show / Library of Congress

Fashion Show / Library of Congress

I am supposed to sway my right stroke hip like a supermodel struts the catwalk.

Strut. Strut.

In the Navy

Navy / Library of Congress

Navy / Library of Congress

In the rehab hospital, I met another stroke patient, an older gentleman. He didn’t seem to have difficulties speaking or have movement problems. However, once in a while his wife would come in and correct certain facts that he had told the other patients. He was not, it turned out, an admiral in the Navy.

Shoot

Gun / Library of Congress

Gun / Library of Congress

I also shared a room in the rehab hospital with a teenage girl who had tried to shoot herself dead in the head, and missed. She was now in a wheelchair for life, with her head misshaped.

Coma

Sun Moon / Library of Congress

Sun Moon / Library of Congress

Rehab hospitals see the unlucky and the lucky. I shared a room with a woman who went into her office on a weekend. Thieves broke in. They stole laptops and beat her over her head. Because it was the weekend, no one found her until Monday, when she was in a coma.

Three months later, she suddenly woke up. That’s when I met her.  She was in a wheelchair and was terribly skinny — less than 100 pounds. She ate lots of candy to fatten herself up. She did not seem angry.

Bad Youth

Youth / Library of Congress

Youth / Library of Congress

The Centers for Disease Control is reporting a jump in young stroke patients. They found high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and tobacco use in these younger patients. Bad youth.