I used to try and psych myself out of being sick.
I would sit on the bathroom floor, staring at the horrifying patterns on the wallpaper and think things like "Okay. You've got this. If you can count 43 of the scary country blue flowers on the Home Interiors nightmare on the wall behind the toilet, you won't throw up."
About 5 seconds later - I would, of course, throw up.
Which is, generally, the start of a chain reaction for me.
I hate few things in this world more than throwing up.
And the simple act of doing so for the first time would trigger a reflex action of a second go 'round.
By the third, I would need the placebo effect of rationalization again.
"Alright. So that didn't work so well. Flush the toilet. And if the blue water now muddied with stomach acid doesn't swirl around more than seven times before disappearing into the maze of plumbingness below - you won't throw up again. Please, God, please."
In case you wondered, rationalization - even a second one - accompanied with a heartfelt plea to God Almighty, does not work.
This morning was further proof of that.
"I can do this. If I can sit here until the second chorus of the Goo Goo Dolls - Iris, I won't throw up."
And I don't want the world to see me
Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everythings . . .
Well, there's those pills I just swallowed.
Does this mean I have to take the pills again?
I mean, surely if you vomit them 20 minutes after digesting them, their job cannot be performed adequately.
I should have known the Goo Goo Dolls are far more likely to induce vomiting than prevent it.
Sorry, God, I didn't realize you liked the Goo Goo Dolls.
I rescind my last thought.
I really like them, too.
No, I really, really do.
Though I probably wouldn't admit that aloud to anyone else.
But I like them.
Why else would I have thrown this song onto the mix CD.
I think I even have two of their. . . .
Please, please, please, make it stop.
Pleading sometimes works better than rationalization.
No sudden movements.
Okay, this is working.
Reach for the bath towel.
Mop my brow.
I'm okay. It's over.
Please, please, please.
"Seriously. It's over. Surely it's over. Oh. The White Stripes. Seven Nation Army. Focus on the lyrics. Remember the lyrics. If you're thinking of the words and not the rolling motion of your stomach, you won't be sick. You're making yourself sick because this is all you can think about. Stop thinking about it. Sing. But don't open your mouth. Don't tempt fate. Sing silently
to yourself. Sing."
I'm going to Wichita
Far from this opera forevermore
I'm gonna work the straw
Make the sweat drip out of every pore
(these are some weird ass lyrics, what the buddha was Jack thinking?)
And I'm bleeding, and I'm bleeding, and I'm bleeding
Right before the Lord
All the words are gonna bleed from me
And I will think no more
And the stains comin' from my blood tell me Go back home . . .
"You did it. One whole song. You can move now. Slow motions. Please, slow motions. Careful. Careful. Alright. You're alright."
I'm getting better.
I know it.
My body's acclimating to the medications.
This was an every morning routine.
Every. Single. Damn. Morning.
Today is the first time since . . .
Oh, that was just last Monday.
9 days is still better than everyday.
I've gone nine days.
Now I can go ten.
How about 12?
We'll go twelve.
And, tomorrow, I'll tell myself, after I swallow two fists full of pills:
"No. We're going to go twelve days. You're not going to be sick this morning. 12 days. You can do it. Today's the first step. 12 days. Please, God, ple . . . ."