Monday, September 10, 2007

Little Lacie of the Enormous Brain

Bee Gees Song of the Day: Alive

I ain't lost and I ain't searching.
But then you know me very well.
And I can't change the wind and make it blow the other way.
I'm a fool and I can tell .

My friend Lacie has this ginormous brain; so big, it oozes out of her skull. Lacie is this teeny four-foot-something “Tixan” (Texan for the right-speaking people of the world) and I tower over her at 5’2”. My first signal that she wasn’t quite right was within hours of meeting her eight years ago and she commented on my “Tinnis shews” (Sneakers, again for the right-speaking people).

I joke, but my friend has a condition called a chiari. Simply put, as I said, she has a bit o’brain sticking out from the bottom of her skull. She made me aware of it almost as soon as she was diagnosed. I’ve seen pictures and she has allowed me inside her year-long struggle with the progression of her condition, the fights with her insurance company, and the requirements that she get second, third and fourth opinions from hot-winded upstate New York neurosurgeons who think their name is spelled g-o-d. Jerks.

She’s facing brain surgery, if the scum-sucking bottom-dwelling pieces of sh*t at her insurance company will approve it already. Eff-sticks. Give me a phone, and get me the address to the New York State Attorney General, the Albany Times Union, and the NYS Insurance Department. A strongly worded letter will be sent to the Insurance Company Eff Sticks (and I work in the industry, can you imagine??) with cc’s to everyone that matters.

Lace won’t let me.

Interesting the individuals we meet on our path. Eight years ago, after cruelly mocking her twang and posting a vocabulary lesson outside my cube, we found out we both had an inordinate affection for the X-Files and soon discovered that we were kindred souls. Lace came to my house and saw dead people, I went to hers and hung out. (Dead people apparently shun me, though my house was teeming with them, they chose not to reveal themselves to me.)

When I went through one of the most difficult periods of my life ~ my separation and subsequent divorce ~ I tried, but was unsuccessful at keeping my anguish in. I didn’t say a whole lot in the office, and without a word, every few days or so, a beautiful biblical passage would wind up on my desk before I got in the office in the morning. Lacie knew I was in pain, wasn’t going to intrude, but she was there with her unspoken support. It was invaluable. In her uniquely beautiful and creative way, she made me collages, printed out pictures of Duchovny, made cards; anything to make me smile and let me know she loved me.

I live 400 miles away now, but it doesn’t stop us. We chat nearly every day. I rejoice with her on her good days and pray for her on her bad days. I’ve taken her to task for running/jogging/walking when her doctors have told her to cease and desist, but I encourage her freedom of spirit at the same time. She knows my most obsessive secrets and she delights in them. She’ll tell me I’m weird, but she makes it sound like a good thing.

She has even taken my dvds of “Emperor of the Sea” with Song Il Guk and hopes to watch it some day. That’s my definition of friend, right there.

More importantly, as she faces an enemy that would make me want to shrink inside myself (not the insurance company, but you can insert that here if you like, the stinking *&^% $#@!+* pond scum), she meets it head on with a strength, courage and profession of faith that astounds me. She stumbles, but gets back up. She sees hope in all things and rejoices. She feels comforted and strengthened in her weakness.

I am humbled by her in every way. I just wish I could do more.


John said...

Lacie shared this with me. Thanks for such a witty yet insightful look at my wife and her journey. And thanks for being a good friend.

I too look forward to our upcoming viewing of Emperor of the Sea, even if only out of intrigue!

Sarah said...

Thank you for saying such wonderful things about my tender, brave and very strong big sister. You said it better than I ever could have. She's very fortunate to have you for a friend.

Sarah said...

Thank you for saying such wonderful things about my tender, brave and very strong big sister. You said it better than I ever could have. She's very fortunate to have you for a friend.

Anonymous said...

You pegged my little spit fire to a "t". Lacie is both my daughter and my hero. She inspires and estounds me daily. Thanks for being her support and sounding board. Keep fighting for her.
Her dad, Leigh

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