October 30th, 2002

Nescafe rabbit

Tempered steel

Jefe worries about me.
I suppose he has the right; he knows me as well as anyone on this becalmed planet does. He's seen me break before - he's one of the few who knows how possible and how devastating it is.

So is it better or worse, when it just means I get trashed for a night and then go on? Would you rather I break like I did before? I wouldn't. Now it's...controlled. Now I know that I can wait out the paranoid fantasies, the vivid imagery that comes to mind.

When I close my eyes at night, before I go to sleep, while I'm still waiting for my mind to stop racing through the events of the day, I see things behind them. I always have.
Last night, it was lilliputian savages dragging a dessicated corpse through underbrush, the flesh slowly falling away until it was just a skeleton held together by tendons and scraps of muscle. Except the eyes were still there. Maybe it's to make up for the other night, when I saw kittens with their eyes gouged out, waiting for me to feed them...and the milk in their bowls was blood.
More or less, they've almost ceased to disturb me. More or less, I just wait it out...and they go away.
I'm sure it means something. I'm sure that the violence of the images is directly correspondant to my particular state of tension. But I don't care. I have to get through this somehow, and once I do it'll be all right. I will get through it. I'll make it.

Tempered steel. Hardened in the forges of my own mind, my own self-doubt, my own inachievable standards. Has it made me stronger or just more brittle, more likely to despair?

And it's time for class once again. At least we only have classes this morning. This afternoon is cramming-time for (oh, fuck. printouts for Iwona! *fetches, prints*) the Medical Genetics final. I don't want to take any more exams...I can't wait for it to be monday after next. No exams for a whole 11 days.

And yes, Clarabear, I think I'll take a day off then.
And Jefe? Don't worry. I'll make it. I always do. (loves)
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Nescafe rabbit

A thinking question....

Tay-Sachs disease.
A progressive neurodegenerative disorder. Untreatable, uncurable, but detectable by specific tests.
Children are born normal. By six months of age they have begun to show signs of progressive motor and mental degeneration. They die by age 2-4. Always. Untreatably.
Prevalence: 1 in 30 Ashkenazi Jews is a carrier of the disease. If two carriers get married, 1/4 of their children will have Tay-Sachs.
We have the ability to tell if someone is a carrier of Tay-Sachs...and to then test the child of two Tay-Sachs carriers to see if the child is afflicted. At that point, about 95% of couples elect to terminate the pregnancy.

Is it right to abort a Tay-Sachs foetus?

I think the fact that 99% of couples who'd previously had a child with Tay-Sachs decided to abort the second child with Tay-Sachs is a telling mark. Is it fair to a child to bring them into the world - to have six months, maybe a year, before their life spirals irreversibly and irrevocably down the drain to death?
No treatment. No treatments on the horizon.

What about anencephaly? A small percentage of these children (who have no brain at all due to a defect in formation) survive in utero - to be born, vegetables without brains, with only the most rudimentary of functions left in the brainstem, with a gaping hole in a misshapen head, eyes that will never see. They survive no more than a few days with the best of care...and you can't give someone a brain, nor can you reverse the deformations of development.

Interesting thought, isn't it?
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