My Daughter Katy – She is Part of My REAL World

Just some highlights from this week (and it’s only Wednesday, June 27, 2018):

  • Justice Anthony Kennedy announces retirement – leading to the second supreme court selection from President Trump
  • A president’s press secretary is “asked” to leave a restaurant by the owner.  Then, the restaurant’s owner follows the dinner party to their next restaurant and bothers them.
  • Community organizer / former Boston University student / bartender who is twenty-eight years-old and labels herself a democrat-socialist beats a 10-time winning democrat congressman in New York – fourth-in-line for Pelosi.  She supports incivility, impeaching President Trump, and taxes that could reach higher than 70% for the “wealthy.”
  • A congresswoman says to her followers “Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd. And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere. We’ve got to get the children connected to their parents,” Waters said at the Wilshire Federal Building, (CNN)
  • From a pretentious / holier than thou organization, states (paraphrases) American Author Lara Ingalls Wilder’s works are now racist, violent, and insensitive.  Her name is removed from a long-time literary award.

And, you know the one thing all these people /events have in common?  They don’t know I spent Tuesday night, June 27 and will spend Thursday night, June 29 in Sutter Hospital with our daughter Katy.

Around June 2017, Katy was diagnosed with a form of Epilepsy.  She has seizures.  Not the “grand-mal” seizures.  No.  These seizures are subtle.  They cause her head to feel numb.  She can’t say her words clearly and at times part of her body will go numb.

So, in July 2017, we went from Kaiser to Sutter.  When we went to Sutter, we were blessed to have a well-known Neuro Specialist be given to Katy.  In late July 2017 / early August 2017, the doctor told us, she wanted Katy to go through some intense testing to see how her brain reacts to stimuli.  For at least five days, possibly up to seven full days, Katy will lay in bed.  Three-times a day, she will have a strobe light flashing in her eyes and be asked to hyperventilate.  Each of those three times will last around thirty-minutes.  Katy also needs to stay-up and be sleep deprived.  For an entire week.

Her mom (Diana) and I have agreed to alternate nights and spend the night with Katy.  This would be one of those times I am grateful to be a teacher; a high school music teacher since July 3, 1989.  Last night was my turn to be with our daughter.

Being with our twenty-two-year-old daughter was really special!  My sister, Susie, brought over an amazing bag full of Katy’s favorite snacks and drink.  Aunt Susie also filled up the bag with magazines, including Katy’s first issue of “Cosmopolitan.”  Because, Katy is FAR FAR from being a “Cosmopolitan” reader, she laughed and gave that “look.”

I sat on a comfy chair.  Katy and I talked.  Quietly read or she was doing her word-search, which the doctor encouraged.

Katy had a really good dinner:  pork chop; string beans; squash; and, soda.  Then, came Aunt Susie’s munchies!  YES! 

We watched one of our favorite television shows, LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD.  Then, we switched channels and watched the SF GIANTS beat the Rockies.  And then … THE YAHTZEE:  best two out of three began!  SHE “SPANKED” ME!  Well, at least, the first game.  That first game — she even got a YAHTZEE!!  And then, she had had to have her third round of strobe light and hyperventilating.  While other twenty-two-year-old girls will have strobe lights and hyperventilating on a dance floor at some night club, there is Katy with her skull cap on; exhausted at 10:55pm; in a hospital bed. The procedure lasts for around thirty minutes.

I go walk the hallway with a cup of coffee given to me by a nurse.

11:30pm – I come back in the room and THE YAHTZEE:  best two out of three is back on… and then, for some reason, I spank her – two games in row!!  Hmmmmm…

Now, it is time to sort of wind things down.  It’s about 1:30am and I am feeling my fifty-two-year-old body starting to “whimper” at me.  While, dear Katy is texting away; watching a movie on her computer…Doing what she has been told to by the doctor and nurses.

At 2:30am, with an 8:00am dentist appointment in Granite Bay, I needed to get some sleep.  “Sleep.”  Sleep in a roll-away bed.  Those cool / real thin blankets.  Two pillows that have lost any sense of being firm.   And … my feet hanging over the end of the bed.

3:15am – Wake-up.  Check on Katy.  Yep – no worries.  She is still awake.

4:00am – Wake-up.  Check on Katy.  Sure enough – Still awake.

5:00am – Wake-up.  Check on Katy.  Yes!  Awake.

And then around 5:45am, I finally give-up the battle for two-consecutive-hours of sleep.  If ya looked at my FIT BIT, I got THREE-HOURS OF SLEEP!  I look at the hospital bed and  there she is.  Skull cap on.  Not moving a muscle.  Kind of got me choked-up.  She looks worn out and she has four days more to endure.

She hears me… and wakes-up.  Super tired.  Again, this will be Katy’s second consecutive day of being awake for nearly twenty-four hours!

“Oh, good.  I wanted you to be awake when I leave.”

Get the roll away bed put back together.  Gather all my belongings.  Give her a kiss and say, “Good-Bye.”

I then get in the car for the twenty-four-minute drive to Granite Bay.  Turn on the car radio. And, there is the “real” world “screeching” on talk radio. The “real” world.

Well, not for me.  I was leaving my “real” world!

I don’t know Justice Kennedy.  How is he real to me?

I don’t know Press Secretary Sanders.  How is she real to me?

I don’t know the community organizer / former Boston University student / bartender from New York who is now the Democrat candidate from New York. How is she real to me?

I don’t know any congresswoman, especially one who condones / encourages the treatment given to Ms. Sanders?  How is she real to me?

And then, of course, I don’t know Laura Ingalls Wilder or the group who believes her works are so negative, her name is unworthy for an award.  How is she real to me?

But, I buy into it.  I am supposed to care.  Have passion.  Wave my hands in the air and run around screaming, “The sky is falling!  The sky is falling!  The Russians are coming!  The Russians are coming!”  I GET SUCKED INTO THE MADNESS.

Later, in the afternoon, I get a text message from Katy.  She is all excited!  She writes, “I think I had a seizure.  My head felt funny and my arm went numb.”  She is excited because she possibly had an epileptic seizure?  Wow.  Talk about perspective.

DAMN IT!!  I need to do better.  All this crap in the world:  Trump this.  Trump that.  You like Trump – you’re bad.  You hate Trump – you’re stupid!  I (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) am twenty-eight years old and I can make a difference with all the experience I have had — and that difference??!!  WE WILL TAX YOU BECAUSE YOU ARE RICH AND GIVE IT TO THE POOR!!  And then, these pretentious / holier than thou folks who change the name of a literary award to make them feel better.  Who would have thought the author of LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE would be so “bad,” her name needed to be expunged from an award?  SPEECHLESS.

You know what I am saying? Here is what I am saying:  FAMILY IS REAL.  All this “bullet-point” junk that I share?  NOT REAL.  Well, not real for me.  None of those people (and nor should they) give a damn about me / my family / my friends.  None of those people (and nor should they) are getting excited because Katy Everts POSSIBLY had one of the three seizures she needs to have so she can come home and recover from a “painful” week.

Now, there other families struggling with their challenges; greater challenges than we currently face.  For all families, at any stage of living, what I suggest is what Dr. John C. Maxwell is attempting to teach me:  SUCCESS MEANS HAVING THOSE CLOSEST TO ME (Paul D. Everts) LOVE AND RESPECT ME THE MOST.  Be there for those family members.  Focus on them!

I look at how wrapped up I got with folks who don’t give a DAMN about me and I am ashamed.  I am ashamed because that energy I gave to the supreme court justice, the White House press secretary, the former community organizer / Boston University student / bartender (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez), a congresswoman, and people who believe Laura Ingalls name is now “bad.”  I can do better.

This writing is a public statement that I CAN DO BETTER.  I CAN BE BETTER.  My time is limited to be with my family and make a difference.  So, to all of you who will get caught-up with crap that has nothing to do with you?  BREATHE.  PAUSE.  REFLECT.  Make your family your priority.  What is your philosophy about life?  Family?  Live the example you want your family to love and respect.