Saturday, March 23, 2013

Sinking Feeling


Readers- Hope n' Change Cartoons isn't going anywhere, but for the next week or two I'm taking some personal leave time. Oh, I may post a cartoon (or not), or a snarky remark (or not), or respond to comments (or not) - but I just can't make any promises other than that this is a temporary situation.

There are some medical issues in my family which need my fulltime attention - and since you all already know that Obama is an America-hating sonofabitch, I'm assuming that you can hang onto that idea for a few days until I get back to you.

A lot of you already know that I'm oxymoronically an atheist and a strong supporter of church rights and the good works that churches do. So that being said, and with the understanding that I'm already comfortable with the idea that I'm going to Hell and have stocked up on sunblock, any prayers, well wishes, or incantations pronounced over crystals said on behalf of my family will be appreciated. The sign on my door says "Good Vibes Accepted Here."

In a really important way, all of YOU are my family members too, and dear friends. And so I'm just leveling here - one friend to another - that this is sort of a tough time and I need to rearrange my priorities until things get straightened out.

Fresh Johnny Optimism cartoons will continue to appear (hell, under the circumstances I might start cranking out a lot of new ones!)

I appreciate your support and camaraderie more than I can say.

-Stilton



66 comments:

Grafton Cheddar said...

Stilton, best wishes for good outcomes. We will all be here when you come back, and it's safe to say we are all here for you and your family.

Anything you need ---- just ask!

GC

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Grafton- The only thing I need is friendship and your patience. And I thank you for both.

It's No Gouda said...

Stilton: I hope your situation is not too serious and will be resolved to your satisfaction.
I don't do prayers either but I do send you my best wishes.

KellyfromWI said...

Hope it all works out soon, not an easy place to be. Good thoughts and wishes sent your way!

Sparky Hudson said...

Oh Stilton, I am grieved to hear that there are medical problems in your life but also that you are not prepared to spend an eternity with the One Who loves you best: Jesus Christ. Since you are also considered a family member and dear friend (who couldn't like YOU!?), you definately have our heartfelt prayers. Take care of your family. They should come before anything else. And please accept what I have placed below in the Spirit it is given (affectionately) and if you ever need any of us, we're there for a pal.

"The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace." Numbers 6:24-26

"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved." Acts 16:31

Jim Lane said...

As a physician, you well understand that medicine involves skill, knowledge and a healthy dose of luck. The skill and knowledge part you've no doubt taken care of, but we all (and I mean ALL!) wish you the very best of luck, and we're hoping for a successful outcome.

Ricko from Georgia said...

Thoughts and Prayers with you and your family. Stay the course and may you have fair winds and flowing seas. Looking forward to your return.

Anonymous said...

Well, I'll pick up the slack for those of you who don't do prayers!

Anonymous said...

Good vibes (S well as prayers) headed your way

John the Econ said...

Consider it done, @Stilton.

drjim said...

Going through the same thing here, Stilton.

Take care of family things....we can (and will!) wait.

TrickyRicky said...

I pray and I believe in vibes and karma. The best of all three to you and your family during trying times.

Larry Sheldon said...

Back in the day there was a service called The WELL (Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link) where a person thought to be in need of external assistance of a spiritual nature would be sent "WELL beams".

Sorry to see that practice die away.

In any case I will contact all the Forces that I commune with on your behalf.

QDman said...

I don't think you actually needed to rearrange your priorities. Seems like they were in the right order all along.

Velcro said...

I can't draw worth crap but my prayers and best wishes for good outcomes are the least I can do for one who has encouraged me.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Readers- Thank you so much for all the kind wishes. Because I don't want to seem overly mysterious, I'll let you all know that an immediate family member has developed epilepsy (not the subtle, "absence" variety but the full grand mal floor show) and so far medications aren't controlling things completely. Additionally, the side effects of powerful anti-seizure medications at high doses are themselves dramatic/traumatic. As such, I need to focus my time, attention, and heart on this situation - and that just won't let me promise to produce material for a bit. But neither does it exclude the possibility of sneaking in a cartoon if we're having a good day and an idea hits me.

I just want to beg your indulgence and give you a clear idea of what's happening behind the scenes here.

By the way, you bastards made me cry with all the nice things you said. For which I deeply thank you.

Grizzly said...

I believe that God is not done with you yet (meant in the most positive way).

I pray blessings and peace on you and your loved ones.

Amazed said...

Hang in there. While I will miss your wit and wisdom, in the big scheme of things it's not the most important thing. Hope you are able to work through this with as little pain as possible.

KingKey said...

Friendship and patience... While I feel neither coming from our "friends" inside the D.C. Beltway, I do believe that there is a great abundance of it within the rank and file of the readership of Hope n' Change. So be well, my friend, and know that we are all thinking of you during these difficult times... and that we are sending all the good vibes that we can muster!

Coon Tasty said...

Best wishes, SJ!

Anonymous said...

God believes in you, Stilton, and He loves you with a greater love than we do! My prayers are with you through this difficult time.

CenTexTim said...

Thoughts and prayers, buddy...

PRY said...

Just saw your post this Sunday morning, Stilt...would like to echo Sparky Hudson's sentiments entirely, as I am SURE beyond a doubt there is a loving
God who watches over us...prayin for you, my friend, best wishes.

Suzy said...

I have been reading your comics over on Facebook but I popped over here to let you know you have my prayers and thoughts and support during this time. Take all the time you need... family trumps all.

Harvey said...

Long-time reader, also an atheist. But were I a praying man, I'd pray for you to find the strength to deal with this challenge, and the optimism to find a way to eventually create something positive from a difficult and disheartening situation.

Ya know what? I'll pray it anyway. Figure if God wants to ignore it, that's his business. I tried.

JLVecchio said...

I will miss your humor and I hope good health to you and your family. John

Sarah Rolph said...

GOOD decision, Stilt. As Lileks once said to Glenn Reynolds in a similar situation "Post not! You are not a public utility!"

We don't mind waiting. We're honored that you shared your situation with us.

Life sucks sometimes.

Hang in there!

Bob D said...

Stilton, just adding my best wishes and an agnostic's prayer (I know what I don't know, but covering your bases never hurts)to you and yours. It's heartening to read though other's reactions and realize we all feel the same when confronted with a crisis.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Readers- Again, I'm overwhelmed and humbled by all the remarks here. And please be assured I'm not disappearing...my energies are just spread a bit too thin for a bit (sadly, my energies are the only thing of mine I can describe as "too thin"). You are a great group, and your support gives me more strength and warmth than you can know.

Necron99 said...

@Dr.J, I've been away for a while again working, and as always, once I return to "The World", I find it to be a "World of Sh1t". I sincerely hope whatever your family's medical issues are, they can be resolved in a prompt and satisfactory manner. Thank you for all your efforts..., and for keeping the faith! You may claim to be an athiest, but even History Channel has aknowleged that 0bamma is the Devil! LOL

Chuck said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours. Take the time you need to do what you need to do ... and don't feel guilty about it! You owe us nothing, while we all owe you a great deal!

REM1875 said...

Dr Stilton Our prayers and best wishes are with you and yours. Don't forget to step outside and enjoy the blue bonnets every once in awhile. The caregiver's wellbeing is also important to the pt in more ways than one, so take care of you to. Will miss you but totally understand.
May the Lord grant y'all comfort and guidance during your difficult times.

Anonymous said...

Thoughts and prayers with you and yours. BtM

Brie Gorgonzola said...

Be strong and know that we are all wishing and hoping for the best.

Anthony Gray said...

Good luck Ill say a prayer for you and your family ,Tony

CT Yankee said...

It so happens that I do prayers and prayers and good vibes are coming your way.

Gang of One said...

You will definitely be in my prayers, Doctor Jarlsberg. The Father's peace to you and yours.

Pete(Detroit) said...

As a 'Recovering Catholic' I'm big into prayer, and your family member just got added to the list.
Are you exploring alternative / complimentary treatments, like accupressure / puncture / moxibustion? Not sure if they'd be able to help the condition or the side effects of the drugs, but it might be worth a look.

Sincerest sympathies, I've seen that show, and I'm hard put to think of a more useless, helpless feeling...

Anonymous said...

I personally enjoy the candor and clear messages wrapped in ironic humor from Hope n Change. My best wishes to you and your family and will be looking for your return!
Steven in Texas.

Emmentaler Limburger said...

DEFINITELY, my brother! You are in my thoughts and prayer!

Stan da Man said...

just curious - is it in poor taste to walk up to an epileptic, and ask, "Hey, dude, what's shaking"?

(and if it's too poor taste to even say that much, feel free to delete this. God love ya, Stilt, and blessings on all your family)

rickn8or said...

Good thoughts your way from a fellow atheist.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Readers- Monday morning as I write this, and yet another round of thanks for all the good wishes and the introduction of the word "moxibustion" into my vocabulary. Or it will be in my vocabulary once I look it up.

@Stan da Man- As Johnny Optimism's adoptive uncle, who am I to say certain infirmities should be off limits for humor? And in fact, April will see the introduction of a new epileptic pal for Johnny over in his own strip.

The point, whether it's Johnny Optimism or Hope n' Change is that humor is an invaluable tool to cope with things which are decidedly not funny. But the jokes (and even the act of making the jokes) helps knock our challenges down a peg or two to a size we might better cope with.

Cookie said...

SJ--My nephew had those kind of seizures and his life was a living hell. He finally was approved for a brain implant that has totally changed his life. I hope that something like that might be available for your loved one. Whatever happens, you know there are many of us sending well wishes and prayers in your family's behalf--not to mention lots of hugs. May the force be with you. And may angels attend you and your loved ones. We will all look forward to hearing from you via this blog and facebook whenever you can.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Cookie- We're hoping that medication will take care of our problem, but the process of finding the right medication and the right dosage is slow and hard. And called "titration," as long as we're building our vocabularies. Since last fall, the seizures appear about every 10 days, with just enough variance to keep us in constant suspense. Meanwhile, all anti-convulsants come with a long list of potential side effects that you'd rather wish on certain politicians rather than a family member. So we're taking it day by day.

mike lester said...

Take five. You've earned it. All the best to you and your family. -=ML

Stan da Man said...

So, this new character, has seizures but learns to cope? Name of Martini? Shaken, but not stirred?
(Man, I'm thinking there's a psecial place, for that one...)

frogmouth said...

Stay strong. We'll be here when you get back.

txGreg said...

My thoughts and prayers with you and your family Stilton. I had a pretty good friend in College who had a similar problem. While I could sympathize with him not wanting to take his meds, I always wanted to kick his Ă˜bama whenever he returned from the hospital... where I had just had to rush him after an especially bad episode that we could not get him out of. :(

455 said...

thoughts and prayers for SJ and family.

Queso Grande said...

Like it or not buddy, you and yours are in my prayers.
Always here for you, as you are for us.
NJ Mike

Larry Sheldon said...

Interesting word that; "moxibustion".

Never saw it before, I was pretty sure it did NOT have to do with people in the North East ODing on soda pop. (Look up "Drink Moxie: to see where I dredged that up from).

There used to be a man in San Francisco who must have encountered his trigger in the train station because it was not uncommon to see him of the platform in mid seizure.

And at the university where I worked there was a woman how was in pretty deep trouble--she had seizures quite frequently and had a bad attitude (in my opinion) to boot--she invoked the ADA or some such if anybody did any thing "special" for her, although the University did finally hire an extra Public Safety officer so one could be available for her at any time (I think he took her home and went and got her because they didn't want her driving on campus).

Lest y'all think I am trying to scare you, I am sorry--that is two out of a much larger number of people who I believe suffer from well-controlled epilepsy.

I started that recitation as a set up for saying that as a unconnected bystander I felt really helpless to help--I can imagine how hard it is for people in your position.

I don't know much about it beyond the the information that external triggers exist for some people--I have heard program designers and others cautioned about flicker rates at certain frequencies.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Readers- I'm going to "radio silence" for awhile. Things are falling apart on this end.

Bruce O'Hara said...

My Prayers added for you and yours, Stilton.

Pete(Detroit) said...

Sorry to hear it Stilt - God bless, and godspeed...

David B. Finlayson said...

Take care Stilton.

Earl Allison said...

God Bless, Stilton

Seadog52 said...

@Stilton: Don't know if the 'man' still listens to this reprobated backslider, but my and my family's prayers are with you and yours.

txGreg said...

(an old joke re-purposed to make our extended family chuckle - and cringe - a bit during the downtime)

The President was out walking on a beautiful snowy day, when he saw that somebody had urinated on the White House lawn to spell out “The President Sucks.”

Infuriated, he called on the secret service to figure out who had done it. In a few hours, they came to him and told him that there was some bad news and some worse news.

“The bad news is that the urine is from the Vice President.”

“Joe? How could you do this to me? What could be worse than this?”

“The handwriting’s the first lady’s.”

txGreg said...

I now feel I must apologize for that visual I stuck in your collective heads.

And to those who sell alcohol... "you're welcome."

Grafton Cheddar said...

txGreg, I remember that one from the beginning of the "Reign", and it was thought to be SO racy. Funny thing is that now from what we surmise about the Mooche being such a harridan and Barry liking His Regular Reggie Rectal Resections, maybe Il Douche is just as happy as not to have Plugs put his where the sun don't shine and keep the Silver Hooker happy?

Anyway, I think our SJ might appreciate a laugh now and then right about now.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Readers- Again, thanks for all of the support. Tuesday was a better day (we take them one at a time), and I've actually got at least a little something in queue for Wednesday.

SC said...

Stilt, I am a believer in God & that prayer can be very powerful...you & your family are in my prayers. I hope everything goes well. Take care my friend.

Kathy said...

My prayers are with you too.
All God's blessings!

Bruce O'Hara said...

Keeping you and yours in my thoughts and prayers...

Tami said...

Prayers for you and your family for peace and healing. You always make me laugh at the world we live in and for that I am grateful. Take care and rest easy.