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[cancer] Wrapped in loving arms

I was reflecting today on a somewhat odd experience I had with IVs in both hands. This is due in part to Henry the Hematoma with which one of my IVs gifted me across the back of my left hand. I can remember sitting in the hospital feeling strangely comforted by their embrace. The IVs tied me to the bed, kept me whole when I was allowed no food for two days, brought me blood and water. They were proof that Medical Science Had Taken Me Up.

When it came time to remove them, I was slightly regretful. Being home now, waiting for the upcoming surgery, I am on my own. The hospital isn’t wrapped around me. Instead I have , , my parents, my siblings, my aunts, and , each taking their turn holding me — literally or figuratively. But in this world, the real world, no one has taken me up. I am my own man, with a monster in my gut.

A few folks have asked if I mind them praying for me. This is a courtesy, given that most people are aware of my staunch atheism. My response has been, “I know what prayer means to you, and that means a lot to me. Please, do.” At this point I’m aware of four Christian congregations and a Buddhist temple praying for me.

I’ve also been asked if I want to “get right with God” before I go into the surgery. That was a sincere question from someone I like, so all I said was, “God and I are fine.” Which is true. He never calls, He never writes, but then neither do I. Meanwhile my relentless empiricism researches cancers and cures, while my underlying logic makes contingency plans and contemplates shaving my arms. I’m right with the world, that’s more than good enough for me.

On another note, and I were discussing the cancer yesterday morning, before I lit out for the coast with the redhead. She wanted to know that if they were cutting away part of the inside of my butt, what about the ants? The ants, I asked? Yes, how cancer moves around your body like ants in a yard.

I told her that as far as we knew, metastasis hadn’t happened yet. She opined in that case this surgery would be like cutting out the anthill before the fire ants got out.

So yes, my daughter, they’re going to cut the anthill out of my ass. All while I’m wrapped in the loving arms of my family, friends and the world. That includes you guys reading and commenting here, very much so.

Tomorrow: what has done for me, brilliantly.

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