I've begun this post seventeen different ways and all of them sucked. Actually one of them didn't, but I abandoned it anyway because it didn't meet even the low standards of good taste that this blog maintains, plus it featured a grotesque illustration I found of how doctors treated epilepsy in the Middle Ages (Answer: Poorly). Beginning it this way sucks, too, but at least the post has begun, so let's move on. I bet the ending will suck, too.
Kathryn is back in the hospital, for a three-day stay of tests and observation. The seizures are proving to be more wily than the medicines she is taking, and so they have brought her in to glue twenty-four electrodes all over her tiny blonde head and see if they can figure out why. A twenty-fifth electrode goes over her heart.
The seizures are getting longer and stronger. Last Sunday, in heavy traffic on the Garden State Parkway, I looked in my rearview mirror to see Kathryn twitching and jerking, seatbelted into her seat. My wife spun around, but the only assistance she could lend was to swipe at the spittle coming from Kathryn's mouth as she threw her head around, a horse fighting its rider. The seizure lasted longer than any we'd seen before, and it left Kathryn wasted, spent, and sick for the rest of the day and long into the next.
It's been only nine months since these seizures have entered our lives. They have stopped being funny. Right now, everything has stopped being funny.
Well, everything except this.
Sleep eludes Kathryn. Or maybe it's Kathryn who eludes sleep. She fights it as she always has, but now when she wakes, she immediately stakes her claim to the day, even when "day" is still several hours away. Not that I can blame her. How can someone sleep when they know it brings the seizures? But yet it's tiredness, more than anything, which triggers them during the day. Catch-22. Like if eating chocolate made you fat, but eschewing it made you fatter.
Sleep doesn't come any easier to the rest of us. It's 2:17 AM. I've opened and shut this laptop so often in the past three hours, I fear its hinge will soon fail. The same goes for the switch on the bedside lamp. The house is still and quiet, and still sleep won't come.
But the end of this post will. And it will suck just as much as the beginning did.