evie altman
art and stuff



“Lungs” by  Camila Carlow

“Lungs” by Camila Carlow

today, hanging out with my bed. and boba of course. much of yesterday too. couldn’t figure out the dragging feeling because everything, emotionally, was actually pretty good. breathing acting up, though. eventually realized i had a headache, a sure sign over the years for not enough oxygen getting to my brain, and realizing that the shortness of breath was more than just the dramatic WDC temperature changes (again). so last night, took a short trip to urgent care, got a shot and an rx for prednisone. breathing much better, but the cough is still here and i’m taking it easy, breathing slowly.

don’t think i’ve ever written about my lungs not breathing right. lots and lots of people experience it, and i have for the past 50 plus years. not breathing right is annoying and disruptive. when it’s bad, no exercising or art or eating.


used to be scary not getting enough air when i was a kid. but you grow out of the fear and just deal with it, like people do with all their various foibles and diseases. memories of waking my mom and dad for shots of epinephrine and something strong in the hot tea to “open” me up, steam showers. also of the hospital and many self-given thigh shots and missed school etc etc. but for the longest time, probably 20 or so years, the twice daily meds have hidden the asthma. once in a while it peeks out, especially when we’re doing breathing stuff in yoga or i’ve finished a long shift on the ice. and head colds always end up in my chest. just the way it is. but, like everything, it becomes second nature. not to my kids, though. i get that, cause it can seem scary if it’s not something you experience all the time. but when you can’t remember not living with it, no big deal.

last night, though, couldn’t lie down, couldn’t stop coughing, couldn’t really talk so well. down the block to urgent care. oftentimes feel that, even though doctors have years of medical training and definitely know their shit, i know more about this, my disease for 53 years. asked for, and eventually got the shot, and then he gave me a not-so-high-prednisone dose to follow for the next week. no high burst and then weaning off, like i used to, but maybe they’ve since determined a better best practice. after urgent care, marxe took me to the pharmacy. fifteen minute wait.

BUT, in the middle of all this, Marxe checks email, sees a notice about Bard admissions, goes to the portal. and, boom! confetti and popping balloons burst on his screen, cause YEAH! my baby got into Bard. and got a massively HUGE scholarship. his first choice was johns hopkins, which we knew was a reach, but bard was the next choice and i am so so happy for him. easy enough to forget the inhalation/exhalation (always think rogelio (jane the virgin) now) when you get news like that.

downs, then ups, and then, just zen. balance. i really do love how life continues however it wants and pays no attention to my breathing. life is good.