Deb Brandon: Living in Radiant Color

Interview or Conversation?

Bloody Brain: Let’s see… Where were we? Oh yes, we were talking about our relationship. Whether we are in this together. Like allies.
ME: Right. So I was saying that that’s a complex issue. On the one hand, you make my life difficult, but on the other—
BB: Yeah, yeah, for every loss there is a gain. The gains far outweigh the losses. Blah, blah—
ME: Actually that’s not where I was going. Sure, that’s part of it. But hear me out, there’s more to it than that. I was thinking about allies against the rest of the world—
BB: That’s an interesting way of thinking about it. I though you were going to say us against the cavernomas—
ME: You must be joking—us against the Bloody Brain? You can’t be against yourself. No, what I mean is that sometimes I feel a level of intimacy. Us against them. You know, when people poo-poo us, or don’t quite get our issues.
BB: Oh, yeah.  Like when Natasha said that you can’t keep using me as an excuse. When was that, a year into your recovery? Boy, she had no clue.
ME: Or when Danny told me to stop obsessing and move on. For crying out loud, I was writing about you, us. How could I not think about it?
BB: Or when that evil neurologist basically told you you were faking it. I felt like punching her.
ME: I felt like crying. Anyway, yes, that is the idea—those are definitely the ‘us against them’ times I’m thinking of. They still happen, though not as frequently.
BB: And you now know better how to handle those situations. You’re pretty good at nipping them in the bud.
ME: I think there are other aspects of ‘us and them’ as well. For instance, when you get me to laugh at myself, at us, when no one else would really get it.  Like on Friday, when I finally got home, and I was too exhausted to get into bed. I just lay there on top of the covers, motionless, my eyelids at half mast. When I caught sight of my reflection in the mirror, I started giggling.
BB: And during the review session Thursday you surprised me into laughing, with your clowning around. You did it to keep me from completely shutting down, didn’t you?
ME: Yeah, exhaustion hit earlier than usual and you just started shutting down on me. I managed to wake you up, then you shut down again, then again and again. It sort of turned into a game.
BB: Speaking of which—
ME: Yeah, I know, we’re tired. Oh wait, weren’t you going to get back to the issue of what you meant by allies.
BB: Right. But I can’t remember what it was. I’m just too tired. Next time. Unless something else comes up.