I've been putting this off...

My brother is my favorite person on earth so that gives him the super power to break my heart over and over and over and I never learn to stop loving him....

He got hit in the head with a fire extinguisher when he was in the Coast Guard. It put him in a coma and when he woke up he was the proud new owner of trauma induced epilepsy. It doesn't work out so well with his hypoglycemia and the meds make him feel pretty crappy.

In the dusk of the 80's he was really self destructive; doing illegal substances, eating poorly and just about killing himself every other month. My friend told me a story once of how they were all riding the white horse and he seized and was so stiff he was straight across the arms of a sofa for the entire 30 minutes it took for an ambulance to get to his place in Boston. I spent a chunk of time in therapy to insure I wouldn't have a complete breakdown if/when he ended up dead.

He has never really gotten around to taking excellent care of himself, but I thought he was getting better.

Not so.

He called on Thursday to tell me that he'd ordered Dilantin and it should be coming Friday. (Long story-he isn't real stable-he lives in a house where the deal seems a little shaky-he doesn't go 'home' for weeks sometimes...so we just have all his important stuff sent here.) Anyway, when he called I asked how many days he had left. He assured me he had enough to get through the weekend. I ask because I have a friend who's a pharmacist who could have given me enough to get him through.

He lied. Turns out he had enough through Friday.

So Monday morning I'm doing someone's hair and his friend from across the hall calls me.

pal: I think he's having a seizure. I thought his place was getting broken into there was so much noise. He is sitting up but there is some blood and he doesn't know who I am.

me: Call 911.

pal: He won't let me.

I knew this already. He is really combative when he comes out of a seizure and hard to deal with but he has a deep seated fear of ambulances because he's hypoglycemic, which presents like a diabetic coma but the first shot of glucagon will kill him. Even out of it, he is scared shit of ambulances.

So I have to listen while his friend cajoles him into his shoes to go to the hospital. I whip through the rest of the haircut and head to Providence.

I got stopped doing an even 100 miles an hour by a Rhode Island State Trooper. I was sobbing so hard he yelled at me to get myself under control. I had the directions in my lap so he knew I wasn't bullshitting....and he let me go. I kept it under 80 after that.

When I got there he was furious I had been called. He was so awful to his friend that his friend just left. He shoved me when I tried to tell the nurse about his seizure groups. He made me cry about 10 times that day--he was so awful to me. I know he can't help it but wow, it cuts deep.

So, he's okay now. He has an appointment at the VA here on Monday. It's 50/50 whether or not he'll show up. I'm at a loss. He won't let me help him with the stupidest things and I know I can't be doing this pregnant. I am high risk and I know from the way I have felt for the last 2 days that this kind of excitement can't be good for me. I have a headache that won't quit and all I can think about is him. I can hardly eat which is not very good for me at this juncture.


I find myself furious with my mother. She did such a shitty job raising us and he has never really recovered from the abuse and neglect. He's dealt with things in a much different manner than I have and his techniques aren't really working for him. There is just plain no talking to him about it. My heart is broken again.

I cannot turn away from him but I cannot continue like this. I feel more stuck and helpless about him than I ever have. I won't be ok if he dies. The last time he had a seizure at my place we took him to Yale. The neurologist there said that he doesn't get to do this a lot more. He said at some point he just won't wake up. He'll be in a vegetative state. I don't want to have to water my brother.

I feel so sad.