Aug. 19th, 2007 10:42 pm
Sometimes the smallest, shortest emails can make your entire day. Got this yesterday from my 5 year old nephew...

0ii lLOVE YOU!!!!



The typos are his ;)

Mom and I, MOMA, photo by [ profile] vernnyc

Not many people know that my mother was 6'4" and often sported a handlebar mustache. My mom, more commonly known as John Story, passed away on Saturday. He left behind his partner of 21 years, Mikel, nine cats and more friends than he will ever know he had.

I first met John in the dark months after my grandmother passed away. My grandmother passed away in December of 1996, and John and I began talking to each other around February I believe. We met on an irc channel which we used to frequent. We hit it off immediately. I wish I could remember our earliest conversations, John was the best person to have a discussion with, there was literally nothing he couldn't discuss. For good reason people referred to him as a walking encyclopedia.

There was also no subject that John wouldn't discuss with me, and that was something that became an integral part of my life. He was one of two people I knew would give me 100% truth if I asked their opinion on something, the other person being [ profile] vernnyc. The only subject John was uncomfortable discussing, was his own health.

In many ways John became the mother my mom couldn't ever allow herself to be. He was my biggest supporter, my harshest critic and my best friend all in the same skin.

For years John encouraged me to go back to school and to move away from Michigan. When I finally went back to school full time a few years ago he was ecstatic, he was even happier when I made the decision stay permanently in New York City. He would introduce me to people and say that I was the most brilliant person he had ever met. Coming from a man like John, that was not something to be taking lightly.

The last few weeks turned out to be very happy ones for John, for which I am thankful. After Thanksgiving dinner (which turned out to be the last time I would see him) he told me it was the best Thanksgiving he had ever had. I think he was as giddy over Bern as I was.

The day after Thanksgiving, John and his partner Mikel both developed a cough, which their doctor would eventually say was pertussis, or whooping cough. It's basically a diagnosis given to a prolonged cough with no other apparent illnesses present.

On December 6th, his doctor told him that he was presenting with the symptoms of a pulmonary embolism. John had previously suffered from a bad case of deep vein thrombosis, which is basically blood clots caused by travelling. We'll never know what John thought about his doctor's suggestion of him having an embolism because John didn't tell anyone, or apparently do anything about it.

By Friday the 9th, he was having a horrible time breathing. In the early hours of Saturday morning he woke up and couldn't make it to the bathroom on his own, so Mikel called 911. They got him to the hospital and decided they would have to intubate him and put him on a respirator but they wanted to give him some drugs to relax him first.

When the put him on the respirator, the blood clot in his lungs burst and he died almost instantly.

I can't even begin to tell you how much I miss him, he was such a large part of my chosen "family".

Rest in peace Mom, I can't wait to see you again.

p.s. John was a set designer and artist, you can see his online profile here


Mar. 2nd, 2005 09:07 pm
Please keep my dad in your thoughts and prayers tomorrow.

He's having a triple (maybe quadruple) bypass tomorrow at St. John's in Detroit.

Have to have him there at 5am!! Surgery at 8am.

Coffee will be waiting, I hope!

Thanks everyone
I was going to post this tomorrow, since it'll be the 6th Anniversary of her passing, but I wanted to get it off my chest today.

My Grandmother was my best friend, period. She was responsible for my love of the arts, and the theater and judy garland and all the great singers (I think she just wanted a gay grandson to be honest).

My grandmother was rarely sick in her life, she never got colds or the flu or anything. The story is that she was only hospitalized three times in her life, and that was to have her three kids.

In 1994 or 1995, my grandmother was diagnosed with colon cancer. She had to have a colostomy, but she recovered fine after a few treatments the doctors declared her cancer free.

Fast forward to December 12th, 1996, and I was working for a TYRANT of a boss, who didn't allow me to make or receive personal phone calls unless it was an emergency. On December 12th, I was supposed to have lunch with my grandmother for my birthday. My boss had walked out of the office and got on the elevator to go upstairs, so I picked up the phone to call her to ask what time she was going to pick me up. She said she wasn't feeling well, that she had the flu, and would I take a raincheck?

Just then I noticed the tyrant walking back in (my boss) and so I quickly said "Grandma I gotta go. I'll call you later. Bye." And hung up.

My boss of course had to know what I was on the phone for, so I told her it was my grandmother calling to reschedule our luncheon date.

The phone ring again about 45 seconds after I hung it up, and when I answered it was my grandmother. She said "Brian, that was the first time in your life you ever hung up the phone on me without first saying you loved me!" I laughed and said "Grandma! You know I love you more than anything" She said "I love you too, and don't you ever forget that."

Then we hung up.

That would be the last words she ever spoke to me, she was dead less than 48 hours later.

Turns out that where her colostomy bag was attached had ripped slightly, and she died from sepsis or blood poisoning. Literally her waste had gotten into her bloodstream. My aunt got her to the hospital and it was a complete disaster. Had they been competent she would still be alive.

My family won a wrongful death lawsuit against the hospital. But it didn't matter, nothing would have brought her back to us.

Thanks for listening.
For a few days now, Ive been having these strange flashbacks to my childhood. And I was NOT a very nice child.

The one moment that keeps recurring over and over.

When I was in the 7th grade (I think) my parents wanted me to have a Halloween party. It was my first year back at a public school, after they had sent me off to Catholic school for 2 years.

I dont recall how many people I had invited, but about 7 or 8 kids mostly from the neighborhood came. The part I keep remembering over and over, was that my mother had made all these cupcakes and I wouldnt let anyone eat them.

So after the party was over and the kids gone home, all the cupcakes were still there.

I wonder what the significance of my mind playing this over and over again is.

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