Well, Damn.

What’s the problem? I haven’t a clue
And I’m hoping the man will pull through
But he’s eight states away
There’s not much I can say
And there’s nothing at all I can do.

CuttleFatherInLaw is, unexpectedly, not in a good way. I am hopeful–the man has been healthier than I am for as long as I have known him–but at cuttlehouse, there are tears tonight.

And yeah, there is nothing at all I can do. So, in desperation, I do what I do when I don’t pray. I remind people to do what they can to help out their local hospitals–blood donations are a start, of course. Or, you know, bone marrow, stem cells, a kidney, whatever. My father-in-law is a believer, so if you are the type to pray for him, go ahead… but since this is my blog, I’ll ask you to do something a bit more tangible as well before you are allowed to feel good about yourself.

Me, I don’t much feel good about myself. There is nothing I can do to make everything better for Cuttlespouse. Or for my mother in law. Or, hell, for me. CuttleFatherInLaw is where he needs to be, getting the best help he can, so I am hopeful that this is all just an excuse to remind you all to donate blood. But damn, it’s really not helping.

So, yeah… hug your loved ones. Donate blood. Support research. We’ll be ok here. You be ok there.

UPDATE: It appears (things are still in flux) that this may be more a case of Mother-in-law anxiety and hypochondria by proxy than actual dire emergency. Yes, FiL is under care, but this is not quite the big deal, as they are in an assisted living facility where such care is readily available and already paid for. I am hopeful that this was much ado about very little, and that he’s back on track to outlive me by decades.

Thank you, all of you, for your kind words and thoughts. It was a brief roller coaster ride in Cuttlehouse, with emergency travel plans being made and tears being shed and blotted up, but three cheers for modern medicine, and here’s hoping the good news continues.

Oh, but you’re not off the hook for blood donations.


  1. MaryL says

    If I may, please, the one thing you can do right now for him is to be there for his daughter. I’m sure you are but think on that as reducing his worries and concerns. This is something you CAN do for both her parents.

    My best wishes and thoughts to all of you.

  2. Anna O'Connell says

    I’m not eligible to donate again until July, but I will make my next blood donation in honor of your FiL, Cuttlefish. And for what it’s worth, I add my best wishes for his rapid return to robust health.

    Hugs and talking to our loved ones can help us feel better, but it is very hard for competent people to endure these situations of forced helplessness. You all have my sympathy. My pseudo-step-daughter is currently caught up in a painful but probably not fatal medical situation, and we are all (including her) at least as frustrated at our forced inaction while waiting for her to respond to treatment as we are challenged by the need to keep her household operating and take care of her 1 year old during her illness.

  3. Kylie Sturgess says

    Hugs. And as the others say, do take care of yourself too. Thoughts are with your family and I’ll keep writing and wait until things are better for you all.

  4. otrame says

    Sorry to hear about the FiL. Hope he pulls through. Your best efforts are in being there for his daughter and the rest of the family. Your best comfort is knowing that you have been lucky to know him, since it is clear that you are fond of him yourself. I hope your get a change to know him for a long time more.

  5. Trebuchet says

    I’ve been donating blood as often as allowed in an effort to repay all the units that kept my mother alive for 2-1/2 years. Unfortunately, I’m currently too anemic so am making financial donations instead.

  6. Randomfactor says

    Will be fitting in a blood donation this week or next. Atheists tithe at the blood bank.

  7. DonDueed says

    I thought at first this was going to be about Mandela.

    Glad to hear it was less dire than originally thought. Alas, that was not the case for both my mother and father over the last couple years. I did not cover the 350 miles in time to be with either of them at the end.

    I, too, cannot donate blood just now, but I’m back on a regular cycle. I’m going to try a double red cell donation next time.

  8. leftwingfox says

    Best wishes to all involved, Cuttlefish. I’ll try and book another platelet collection when I can. (AB+ blood isn’t exactly in high demand.)

  9. says

    Instead of prayer, my sympathies and hope
    That in these trying times you’ll somehow cope.
    Good wishes by the thousand flow your way,
    And love surrounds him, come what may.

  10. says

    I have only just seen this – I’m so relieved that it sounds like the situation is less dire than first feared. Sending best wishes to your father-in-law, the Cuttlespouse and to you, Dear Cuttlefish! As soon as I am eligible, I will donate blood, never fear! Thanks for the reminder about organ donation and other ways to help our fellow human beings.

  11. Randomfactor says

    Donated yesterday, closing in quickly on my ninth gallon. I belong to a local atheist group and am preparing the paperwork to get us recognized as an organized blood fund. They were happy to hand me the forms…until I told them the name of the group.

    Ah, well, they’ll be hearing it often enough…lots of us are already donors. My late wife was a two-time transplant recipient too. You’d better believe I’ve got a donor dot on my driver license.

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