Public Service Announcement

Thursday, April 30, 2009

I have a few readers out there who stop by and leave a few words of encouragement now and again. It really lifts my spirits! It has come to my attention that there are other lurkers reading this simple blog. Their intentions are not so pure. This public service announcement is for them.

To clear a few things up:

I am from Hawaii.

This is where the majority of my family lives. I go and visit them sometimes. They are dear to me and help me when I am in a crisis. I could be from Scranton, or Boise, or Lincoln. However, I am not. It is my good fortune to hail from an island paradise. Sorry. I think this would be a non-issue for my ill-intentioned lurkers if I were from someplace less exotic. Again, I apologize for my good fortune.

All of my grandparents are buried somewhere on the island of Oahu.

In April, my family celebrates Bai-San. This is a Chinese Ceremony celebrated by my family since before I was born. I have missed the last few, due to my back injury and other single-mother commitments.

The festival involves visiting ALL of our ancestors graves, bringing their favorite food, drink and money wrapped in red paper. This lets our loved ones know that we are thinking of them and wish them well on the other side.

There are two reasons I took this pilgrimage to Oahu. One being this very important religious ceremony, the other being that I was desperate to see my family. It has been a trying year, the injury, the uncooperative insurance company, the surgery, and the mind and body-numbing black hole of depression, I have been swimming in since this quagmire began to name a few. These are the reasons. 

I did not go to sunbathe or frolic in the ocean. I was able to swim in the ocean once. Why? Because it rained night and day nearly every day I was there. One can check the weather report for Kailua, HI. Rain, rain, rain. There were three sunny days my entire stay.

 As one of my posts indicated, mainly I spent time with my family, read books, sewed with my Aunty and did yoga. My doctor has prescribed yoga for me and insists I go as much as I am able. To be candid, I only take the gentle classes as my fused spine has many limitations and I must be very careful.

The day I was stung by the Man O war, I was not swimming. I was watching my ten year old nephew  play in the canal that feeds into Kailua Bay. It was a windy day, with some light showers. The Man O War ride onto shore in the wind and get buried in the sand.  As I stood watching my young cousin catching minnows in the canal, I stepped on a jelly fish that had come in with the high tide. Yep, just stepped right on that sucker.

The wound was okay the first day, I put crushed papaya leaves on the wound to draw out the poison, but I was too late. 

I awoke the next day, my foot had swelled up to the size of a melon and was blistering. I went to an urgent care facility, the doctor prescribed steroids to shrink the swelling. She also advised me that I needed to extend my flight another four or five days. According to the doctor's orders, I extended my flight by four days. 

She was afraid that due to the permanent nerve damage in my right leg and foot from my back injury and the severe swelling, that I was at risk of a blood clot should I fly.

Was I disappointed about having to stay with my family for four more days? Well, not really. I love my family and Hawaii is a long way away. I do not see them often enough.

I also spent the time trying to get my life in order. I have been bogged down by depression, the loss of my career, loss of friends, and a general feeling of BAD as I contemplate my next steps. I have not been able to get a grasp of this at home, surrounded by the reminders of all this injury has taken away from me.

This made my trip a total of 13 days. NOT three weeks, as rumored by my lurkers.

I spent time looking forward and trying to figure out my future. My reputation has been ruined, my life uprooted. I went to my island home to re-group. That is all. I know for some, Hawaii is an exotic getaway. It is a time for para-sailing and kayaking, lounging on the beach and swimming in the ocean. For me, it is going home, to visit the people who know me, who help me clear my head, who support me and carry me gently in their hearts.

I hope this clears things up for my lurkers. I know you are there. I did nothing wrong. I was injured at work. I was treated badly by the insurance company, by my employer and by the law.  I am just trying to piece a broken life back together the best I know how. There is no hidden motive, I just want to reconcile this trying year. There is nothing to be ashamed of, it is a modest goal.

To my loyal readers AND my lurkers, be well and do good work. Namaste.