By Dave TaylorWhen I think about this column I usually try to come up with a cohesive theme or storyline, or at least a bunch of paragraphs that make sense together. Well not this week. My mind is bouncing around all over the place so I’m just going to dump it all out here for your perusal.- I feel trapped in this house. I look out the window and I just think about how badly I want to just go – anywhere and everywhere – just to see new things. When I drive to and from some place where I need to use the GPS I always choose a different route back just so I don’t see the same stuff twice. Looking out my bedroom window it’s hard not to see the walls blocking my view of the rest of this beautiful world and holding me inside.
– It’s odd how often I think about how much I miss hot dogs. I daydream a lot about food in general but when my mind is free to wander without being tempted specifically by an image or word, it seems like the food my mind goes to most is hot dogs.
Back when I could still swallow food I cooked them a million ways: on the grill, boiled, cut lengthwise and cooked in the skillet, baked with BBQ sauce and cheese on top. I never ate a wide variety of foods but the ones I did eat I made in lots of variations to change things up.
– The older, sicker and wimpier I get more nervous I get about driving older cars, like my old Beetles. I daily drove a Bug for six years and I’ve had something like 25 of them over the years and I always loved driving any of them I could but lately I just keep thinking about what’d happen if I break down.
I used to never worry about that stuff and really assumed I would be broken down on occasion but it didn’t bother me at all. Now I think about how I should just get AAA and let them tow me, but the hour-long wait for the flatbed even scares me. I’m not sure what to do with that new little fear.
– I wonder if people are tired of hearing about me and my cancer. Even I feel like I’m mentioned a lot in this paper and with fundraisers and things. Is it too much? I’m not the only person who’s sick and I don’t want to monopolize everyone’s time. I also don’t want anyone to think I don’t appreciate immensely how often people have done things for me and how much support I’ve gotten from the community. It really is mind blowing.
– I feel like a fraud when I talk about future plans. I can feel it as I speak the words about whatever plan it is, especially if it’s more than a few months out. I’m not supposed to be here then, even though I hope to be, so it feels disingenuous to even talk about it in any serious way.
Jamie and I signed up for Starlink internet and it told us it won’t be available until 2023. I went along with that and paid the deposit but I felt my stomach drop a little knowing that there are some pretty good odds that I will be gone by that time.
– I miss working. Sure I feel like a drain on society being on disability and getting a check for lying in bed, but I also simply miss my job. I love storytelling and I love how people let me into their lives for a little bit to tell me their stories. I also love explaining difficult topics through my articles.
Just this week we had an announcement from Kenergy about their partnership with Conexon to deliver fiber to the home but I had several stories about that back a couple of years ago when Conexon first won the reverse auctions to provide fiber to our county. I wish I could write another story about that this week but I struggle to even write this column, much less anything additional.
– I feel bad for Jamie when I think about leaving her behind. This comes to mind often when we talk about long-term plans like what to do with the house renovations and all I can think about is her having to go through that alone. It makes my heart hurt just thinking about her by herself in any way and how I want her to be loved and protected and cared for but I also hate the thought of someone else doing that.
– I wonder what will happen to things like my cell phone phone after I’m gone. I don’t know why it matters but a smartphone is such a personal device nowadays it’s almost like my digital twin. Leaving it in a drawer untouched seems wrong, but having it out and going through it too much seems odd too. Of course I have like 100,000 pictures and videos on my phone too so it would take a while to thoroughly look through them.
– I still can’t imagine me actually dying. We will all die, just some sooner than others, but it still seems like a completely foreign idea to me, even though it’s been an imminent force in my life for the past year and a half. Now when I hear about people dying I sit and think about what they went through and whether it was weird or hard or happy. I just don’t know how it’s going to go and my mind can’t even make up a scenario that makes sense.
– I’m becoming more and more dependent on Jamie. Even today the mower threw a deck belt and where I normally would have simply pulled the deck and fixed it myself in a few minutes, I had to have her do most of the work because I was too wimpy to do it. I can’t even mow any more because my lungs can’t handle it and I get pneumonia.
– Even with my medicines, I feel like I have to consult her on what I should take and when, even though I’ve been taking many of these drugs for more than a year and should have it down by now.
– I hope people aren’t tired of this column. I think originally everyone thought it would have a much shorter run, including me and all of my doctors, but by the grace of God I’ve been allowed to hang around much longer than anyone thought. I’m thankful for every day I’m given and I hope I use them wisely.