January 1st, 2009


Gotta live your life.

I was trying to make a list of things I would like to do in 2009, but it was not a good morning, so I was getting through, "Walk unassisted," and, "Drive," and then I was getting all snuffly. Not so much fun. It has been generally agreed around here that while we are by no means giving up on me getting to do those two things, it is probably a good idea if I come up with a list of cool things I can do in 2009 even if they are delayed in coming. I am remembering that I talked to one of you last May, and that person said something about seeing me at World Fantasy, and I said that I wasn't sure if I'd be well enough to travel alone by November. And they reacted with some horror: "But that's six more months!" It was. And I wasn't. But one of the mantras I've had this year is, "You've gotta live your life."

So. As I said, I'm not giving up on doing things that require me to be independently mobile in 2009, so you don't need to reassure me on that front. (And, in fact, reassurances are likely to get a skeptical eyebrow rather than warm thanks, because you don't, in fact, know when these things will be possible for me, and I'd rather not hear a hearty, "Surely you'll be back to your old normal by such-and-such!" when in fact it's entirely possible that I won't.) This is just the stuff we know I can do in theory. Stuff the vertigo can't rule out completely, even if it sticks around at current levels. Stuff. Yah.

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getting by

The difference they talk about making.

If you don't have the donor spot marked on your driver's license--if you haven't let your next of kin know that you would like to be an organ donor--please take the time to consider doing so now. The medical staff will be no less assiduous about trying to save your life if you're a donor, but if something bad happens and your life is lost, you might save someone else's.

I brought this up when Mike Ford died, because given the timing of Mike's kidney transplant and my meeting him, I probably wouldn't have had a friend called Mike Ford if not for the kidney transplant. I would still have enjoyed the works of brilliant author John M. Ford, but that's a pretty important difference.

Tonight my great-aunt Donna died. And she was my great-aunt Donna, someone that I know, someone whose voice I can hear in my head teasing me, rather than "my grandma's sister Donna, I don't know, she died when I was little" because twenty-five years ago, she got a kidney transplant. My cousin Kellie, who is almost exactly my age, got to know her grandmother as an adult. She got to bring her four children to visit their great-grandma Donna. All of her life until tonight has curved to hold a beloved grandmother. A beloved grandmother only a few years older than my beloved grandmother, who had so much of the same taste that they and their other close sister, Aunt Doris, often showed up at family parties dressed alike, in clothes they'd bought hundreds of miles apart without consulting each other, same purses, same coats. Kellie and her sister and first cousins got to know their grandma as anything but a name because of a kidney transplant.

So mark your donor cards, okay? Seriously. Give it some thought. Make sure the people close to you know what you're thinking on this. It's pretty important.