about now i would have been on the phone with some airline or other, trying to get the first flight i could to Berlin, and trying not to break down.
the rest of the day will be spent running around like a chicken with my head cut off, quitting my job, getting prescriptions filled, packing anything i thought i might conceivably need (but, smartly, excluding any depressing music i might have had at the time), and trying. not. to. break. down.
everyone was so supportive that day... my family and co-workers, and my friend Jessica Fraidenberg, who i'd known since middle school, who drove me around on my errands, and who kept my spirits up the best she could. i will always be grateful to her for helping me that day.
tomorrow, 10 years ago, i will fly out on what i think was British Airways, alone and scared to death, but not willing to just give up on him.
i don't remember the flight at all, and the rest of the day after i arrived in Berlin is just flashes of intense sadness, bewilderment and fear of the unknown. i remember getting to the hospital, and having to wait outside the ICU for a doctor to come out and tell us what was going on, which was that they'd had to operate on him, take a piece of skull out to relieve pressure in his head. they'd also induced an artificial coma and hooked him up to various gadgets to take over some vital functions so that his brain could rest as much as it could.
the doctor was an elegant man in his early 50's(?) and was gentle and soft-spoken, which made hearing this news, while not good, as tolerable as possible.
we had to put on special visitor gowns and masks in order to come into the ICU, which made it all the more surreal.
seeing him in his bed hooked up to so many machines, a cyborg with a machine to breathe for him, made me feel as if i was in a David Lynch movie. this couldn't possibly be my life!
i don't know how long we stayed, and i don't remember the ride home, but thank god for Ingmar's friends - they were all waiting for us when we got there. Tiny, David, Morten and Bjoern. i knew them all a little bit from previous visits, but i knew Tiny the best, and flung myself into his arms. he held me on that frozen street as long as i needed, then we all made the climb up to Gisela's apartment.
we all sat in his room for what felt like hours, talking (thank god they had all been at Gymnasium and all spoke wonderful English!). some of them drank, but i just couldn't. David got particularly smashed - he's a sensitive guy who really loved(s) Ingmar. they were best buddies at the time, and it really broke him to have this happen to his friend.
Bjoern was my hero that night, though, holding and soothing me while i cried.
eventually they all left, Bjoern having to escort David (who'd been drinking Kahlua straight out of the bottle for Bog's sake) all the way home, and i somehow got to sleep.
the rest of the 4.5 years is another story.
i got this e-mail from Gisela today:
dear feather, it is ten years ago now since ingmars accident. I remember the first hours and days like it was yesterday. So many things happend since that moment.
today I want to say you, dear feather, that I never will forget, what you and your familiy gave to me as Ingmars mother. time is going so fast and we live our lifes in places far away from each other. but in my mind I often go to you all. please, tell it to your parents too.
I hope we will see you soon. you advertise to come in the beginnig of 2010.
let me know, if there is anything I can do for you when you are here.
my love to you and a big hug, gisela
i'm going to go be introspective now.