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Alive!

Cut the top ten and go straight to the number one reason why Willa Goodfellow should never get herself committed to the psych ward:


I suck at arts and crafts.

I didn't used to.  I used to produce Christmas cookies and gingerbread houses that made adults and children alike respond, "Oh! My! God!" -- though not the way this cake does.  I used to make big gingerbread houses.  No kits. and no showing off with royal icing and special decorating tips (which might have improved this cake, if I had been able to find them).  I used Golden Grahams for shingles, individually placed sprinkles on the door wreaths, graham bears ice skating in the yard, pretzels for fences.  I made Dr. Seuss-like trees out of marshmallows and gummy savers, M&M's for roofing material, or maybe candy-canes for the Swiss chalet touch -- those were a bitch to hold in place until the frosting glue dried.  Once I used peanuts to construct a fire chimney.  All color coordinated.  I must have made thirty of those suckers, and each an original masterpiece.

Then I took Prozac.  And Celexa, and Cymbalta, and Effexor.  And part of my brain has never come back.  I think the part that departed included the "good taste" part.  Also the "give a damn what you think" part.

This cake and the guerilla party I held in the hospital lobby to celebrate the 45,000,000 people at risk for suicide who will survive it, the same hospital whose psych ward I hope never to call home, definitely come out of the "Prozac Monologues" spirit.  So does the grammar of that last sentence.

This one, I am submitting to cakewrecks.com.  So, Elaine, (a friend who happened by the party and was speechless) you can go ahead and say it.  Yes, I know.

Some people actually do get it.  One of the guests was a psychiatrist who laughed along when I bemoaned having thrown away all the meds I have stopped using over the course of the Chemistry Experiment, so that I was reduced to Smarties and Mike and Ike for decorating material.

So...

"I have a dream. Okay, technically it's a fantasy." [Elmont, Doonesbury]  That when people who survive self-injury are transferred from ICU to the psych ward, they will be greeted with a cake.  That when they get home, there will be a party, just like the party that will greet my friend who just made it through colon surgery.  A quiet party, befitting the energy level of the guest of honor.  But a party with a guest of honor, for having survived this latest round with a disease that has a 15% mortality rate.  I have a fantasy that people who survive self-injury, or manage to avoid it altogether, will be treated like people who survive breast cancer.

I have a fantasy that next year the Psych Department itself will host the party for Suicide Prevention Week, with both Emergency Room workers and the patients, out on a pass, sharing the honor.  For sure, the hospital-catered cake will look better. 

Comments

  1. YES, we deserve a Party, when we're able to keep the gremlins at bay and survive and are ALIVE.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hurray, Meg! You are one of my heroes. 45,000,000 success stories. We have to find a way to tell them.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Unfortunately, a closer reading of the submission guidelines for cakewrecks.com indicates that my submission is ineligible. While BCBS, Cigna and I have all paid dearly for the life lessons, nobody actually paiod ME for the cake. So this was not a case when "professional cakes goes horribly, hilariously wrong."

    ReplyDelete
  4. That's too bad. We should have sold pieces of cake without a permit so that you could post on cakewrecks. The cake was a neat way to lighten something serious. Brilliant. :) Jess

    ReplyDelete
  5. I am almost laughing too hard to comment but I will. I can just imagine that on night I was brought up from the ICU to the psych ward -- what IF that guy with red beard (a very kind guy actually) had been standing there grinning behind the glass waiting for me with a cake? One decorated with roses and a whole new set of meds? I was shaky enough as it was, but whoa...was this a hallucination on top of everything else? Heck, I'd have probably scarfed it right down. I was pretty hungry as I recall...Hope you had a good party.

    ReplyDelete

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