Sunday, January 02, 2011

Christmas 2010 (with intercessions)

My photos are tardy because I left my camera at Bill's on Christmas Day and only retrieved it amid last night's festivities.

Here is my tree with all my wonderful children gathered around it.

Blogs are almost as notorious as Facebook for having way too much information on them but if anyone is so vulgar as to wonder with whom I've been sleeping for the past several years it's the larger furry fellow in the lower right corner: His Orthodox Majesty Maximiliano Cuauhtémoc Juárez Primo, Emperor of El Cerrito, Archduke of Hercules, and Margrave of the Great River. You have to hand it to him for claiming territories wherever he goes. He is known as Cocoa to his friends.

Christmas Morning from Bill's living room

Cranes viewed from Bob and Janet's dining room

The portal at Bill's house with the luminarias lit*

* Yes, in Santa Fe these are farolitos and luminarias are the small bonfires; in Albuquerque these are called luminarias (and the candles for them are so labeled in the store). I report and natives debate.

Men in and around the kitchen just before Christmas dinner
(the slender young ones are our nephews and godsons)

I have not posted much for numerous unrelated reasons. I cannot blame the business of the holidays. While I get fired up over politics I have not had the emotional energy to compose my usual rants. I have alternately been battling tooth problems and a persistent sinus infection for three months now. I have thus often been in pain or drugged or anxious. It is to be hoped this will soon be resolved. I have also been pursuing a private life for a change.

I have had three root canals in as many months. This Tuesday I will have sinus surgery to drain all the infection and repair a deviated septum at the same time. They will be working in three sinuses on my right side. It is day surgery and Bill will be with me that day and night. The doctor will remove plastic stents when I see him ten days later. So I will be out of commission for the next two weeks. Your prayers are requested and appreciated.

Between this and holidays and too many doctor appointments paychecks have been slim and medical expenses high. I give thanks that I am insured and still employed and think of those who lack work and seek it, those without insurance, those who are homeless. Let us hold them in our hearts also and seek to make our social systems better.

David@Montreal has called for our prayers once again:
I've just had a call from Carol, the heroic wife of my very dear cousin Frank who, as you'll remember has been putting up a heroic fight against lukemia and the compications it brings.
unfortunately Frank and Carol have had a pretty horrendous holiday season. the original plan to admit him before Christmas was abandoned when the hospital found themselves with some pretty serious viral outbreaks and Frank was sent home for his own protection. since then, they've been treating him daily as an outpatient with Carol having to drive to and from Whitrock BC to Vancouver each day and eight hours in the hospital, seven on seven.
in addition to the rapidly depleting white blood cell/platlets, the primary foe of the moment is an aspergillis fungal infection in his lungs.
with no spleen and a non-existent immuse system as his body still recovers from his second genetic transplant on Sept 22, the hospital is throwing everything they have at the fungus without success so far.
David follows that with a second request for some others very dear to him:
I've just had news that the situation with the poet Mark Doty's eye has deteriorated. on Christmas night, the torn retina detached for a second time within a number of weeks, and he and Paul are going to have to wait at least a week or more before the NYC medical system can accomidate the rather long operation.
i don't know if you know Mark's poetry, but he is one of the most light-filled poets alive today in your country, and his memoir 'Heaven's Coast' was one of the most powerful books to come out of the first decade of AIDS. I cherish both Mark and Paul and would ask your prayers for them, they're a wonderful couple, both of them generous teachers and wonderful writers.
There are prayer requests at OCICBW: here and here (poor Mrs. Mad Priest, putting up with Mad Priest and us lot plus having migraines).

We ate well, drank plenty, and made noise last night (not on the Eve) but you are spared photos; I took none.

A blessed 2011 to you all. May it, and perhaps we, be kinder than 2010.

--the BB


it's margaret said...

You are and will be in my prayers dearest Paul. Thank you for sharing your life with us --in all its ups and downs. Love to you, and many blessings in the New Year.

Fran said...

Paul, I have been keeping you and all intentions in my prayers.

It looks like a lovely Christmas and I am grateful to have seen these lovely photos.

Luminarias, farolitos... ah New Mexico, it does make my heart sing!As you do, my love!

Ellie Finlay said...

I love the photos!

Oh, Paul. I'm so sorry about the upcoming sinus surgery and somehow I didn't realize that you had had THREE root canals. Ouch!

I will keep you in my prayers and will also hope sincerely that this surgery does the trick and helps you feel better consistently.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Cher Paul, you are on my daily prayer list, and I posted a prayer request at Wounded Bird that all goes well with your surgery tomorrow.

Your pictures are delightful, especially the pic of the children.

May God bless you and keep you. May God guard you safely through surgery and recovery. May God restore you swiftly to full health and strength.

motheramelia said...

May you come through the surgeries healed. Prayers ascending

susankay said...

Prayers for healing for you all all those in need. Awfully good to see an update.

TheCunningRunt said...

Tons of prayers wending your way, and hopes that Cocoa gets to accompany you.

See you when you're feeling better, my friend.

Paul said...

Thanks, everybody.

Cocoa does not get to go to the hospital and technically I should not sleep with him tonight after I do an antiseptic shower. Not sure I can sleep well without him. I'll probably cuddle with Bill tomorrow night and then Cocoa returns and can hog the covers again. (He says I'm the one who tears the bed apart but I don't think he's totally innocent.) He's a wonderful bear.