So, this one time I totally spent a whole summer vacation in the hospital, just to see what it was like. Not really. But I did manage to get a central line infection from a PICC line and actually did spend my summer vacation BEATING DEATH (you wish you could say that). Anyways, it was twelve (AWESOME!) days in the hospital which weren't actually that bad because I spent the whole time eating breakfast in bed and seeing like all my friends. We even had a whole Google+ event on it (hosted by the lovely Ted Eytan). We also had an awesome google hangout. Yeah, my friends are amazing.

Day One

 

Grow Baby, Grow!

Grow Baby, Grow!

You know that feeling when you get a 104 degree fever? Yeah. That feeling. But you don't have to wait in line at the ER so that's excellent. Plus, blood stream infections don't make you sick like flu sick, they're just a fever which doesn't actually feel that bad (Obviously you should trust the memory of the person who was shivering like it's Antartica, not in DC in June...).

Day Two

We need a drug pump for zofran?

We need a drug pump for zofran?

And then you just spend a day bored out of your mind? But you did have some kinda awesome hallucinations. And you got to see your favorite suit who gave you a Little Mermaid pin.

Day Three

PICC lines are rough, man!

PICC lines are rough, man!

And then they try you on Penicllin's cousin, Piper (which you're allergic to) and literally crawl on top of you to change out your PICC line dressing for (seemingly) the fun of it? But your friend totally brought you Kale AND an all organic-vegan milkshake which made your inner Berkeley dance.

Day Four



And then they pull out your PICC line (not for the fun of it). But your friends bring you homemade strawberry jam and make you a sock puppet, so the nurse still calls you her "happy flower" and you know it's all going to be alright?

Day Five

And then Smokey Bear says you have to get new iPhone cords? But then your friends come to visit because they're awesome? Yeah, this friend, and this friend.

Day Six

And then you start to make friends with your food and everyone decides that after day 5 you must be dying so they start sending you Bible verses and the timing kinda-sorta-freaks you out?



And then you (actually) start dying, but it ends up ok?

Day Seven



So you wake up and do a half crazed monologue on beeping alarms and then you totally sign off on a surgery without really knowing what you're getting into?

video call

But then you google hangout with this friend, and this friend, and this friend, so it's cool.

Day Eight

And then they play around in your neck (again, for the fun of it). But then you get to eat as many cherry popsicles as you want so it's awesome?

Day Nine

And then you can't get out of bed again, but your friends bring you Matzah Ball soup, so crisis averted.

Day Ten

New Drugs! Winning!

New Drugs! Winning!

And then you pass out? But you got new drugs, so you know it's all going to be winning.

Day Eleven

 

And then they say you may never get to leave? But then the sunshine of life brings you Chipotle (Pooh brought to you by this friend), so it's actually a super fantastic day?

Day Twelve

Made Bail!

Made Bail!

And then you make bail, and Mom and Dad take you home. And it's all winning. No buts about it.

TeamJessBanner

 

In putting together my story to become a member of The Walking Gallery, I started thinking about all the people who have helped me out since I got sick. Maybe they helped me out physically, maybe emotionally. All I know is that all of these people were there for me. Most of them were there for me multiple times. Some stayed up with me all night. Some pushed me to get help. Some listened to me complain, cry, and laugh. And I know that without this cast, I wouldn't be who I am today.

So, everyone, thanks -- you prove that the heart of life is good.

 

 

The Home Fries

 

The people who understand where I come from. It’d been years, yet when I got sick, they called, sent flowers, and visited. They don’t pick me up off the ground, but they’re always only a phone call away.

My Girls1. The Sister, 2. The Mother

My Boys3. The Father 4. The Brother 5. Becky, 6. Bissie, 7. Jessie, 8. Ryan

 

The Cal Kids

suzie

9. Suzie

From the beginning of college through the present, no matter what the issue is, they listen to me, laugh with me, and pick me up when I fall.

viv matt

10. Stephanie, 11. Vivian, 12. Matt

Or they send their parents, or their boyfriend, or their boyfriend’s friend. Basically they’re hyphy rockstars who stood by me before I got sick, stood by me when I got sick, and stand by me to this day.

Sonja Nayeli13. Sonja (14. Tal), 15. Nayeli

Amanda

16. Amanda

havah steph

17. Havah (18. Jason), 19. Stephanie,

AGO ADX20. Stephanie, 21. Carrie, 22. Laura, 23. Arri, 24. Susan, 25. Laurelei, 26. Erin, 27. Carissa, 28. Amanda, 29, Carla, 30. Sarah, 31. Andrea, 32. Emma, 33. Peter, 34. Dave, 35. Jared, 36. Mark, 37. Bryson

At Cal, it’s hard to have real relationships with your professors, your GSIs, your classmates. You’re one in 500 students. But when you fall over, these barriers somehow disappear. My bioethics professor offered to be my medical advocate and call my parents. My social psych professor took me to the student health center in a police car. My GSIs took me home and didn’t freak out too much when I got pulled out of their classes by EMTs. My classmates told me their personal stories, walked me home, and ran the interference required to keep me out of the hospital. Then I worked at a homeless resource center, and, of course, I had my own contingent of the tribe.

gorcey

38. Max, 39. Lev, 40. Ryan, 41. Ben, 42. Joe, 43. Andi, 44. Neil, 45. Steven, 46. Eric, 47. Emilie, 48. Chad, 49. David, 50. David, 51. Diva, 52. Robb, 53. Dylan, 54. Olivia, 55. Kevin, 56. Kristen

 

The Georgetown Crew

I know I owe my masters degree to my cohort at GU - they ensured that I graduated with some cognitive surplus intact. They stole a wheelchair (we returned it... eventually...), drove me home, tucked me into bed, picked me up in weird places, took me to the hospital and waited for hours, staged an intervention, rescued me from water, were my chauffeurs, and caught me when I fell.

Dantana

57. Karen, 58. Veronica, 59. Erin, 60. Dantana, 61. Zach, 62. Veronica, 63. Ashley, 64. Matt, 65. Chris, 66. Matt, 67. Anthony, 68. Betelle, 69. Elliott, 70. Hooman, 71. Jennifer, 72. Kyle, 73. Laura, 74. Maria, 75. Sarah, 76. Stephanie, 77. Charlotte, 78. Haymi, 79. Heather, 80. James, 81. Alice, 82. Alex, 83. Dr. C, 84. Dr. H, 85. Amy, 86. Miriam, 87. Michelle

Phil

88. Phil

ekat
89. Ekat

 

The Feds

For a crew that wears suits all the time, they’re surprisingly protective. From the ONC to HRSA to the FDA, these people were amazing.

90. Wil, 91. Farzad, 92. Lanre, 93. Sachin, 94. Andrea, 95. Sameer, 96. Yael, 97. Marty, 98. Miryam, 99. Robyn, 100. Ian, 101. Mike, 102. Rose, 103. Mary Beth, 104. Georgie, 105. Lori, 106. Jim, 107. Jill, 108. James, 109. Adam, 110. Damon, 111. Aman, 112. Alina, 113. Alon, 114. Mary, 115. Doris, 116. Amy, 117. Gary, 118. Sasha

hhs

High Fives

High Fives

119. Alicia

randi120. Randi

The Law Kids

I was scared that when Amanda left and I wasn’t with the GU kids everyday I’d be alone. That I wouldn't have a person anymore. Nothing could be further from the truth. These people adopted me into their family and are there for me as if I had always been a member of the crowd. Even though I’m not an attorney.

121. Brad, 122. Marie, 123. Gabe, 124. Shaun, 125. Michelle, 126. Sam, 127. Natalie, 128. Laura, 129. Navin, 130. Kathleen

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The Walking Gallery (and Twitterati)

ted regina131. Regina, 132. Ted,
These people gave me a voice to speak out about being a patient. They helped me discover telling your story is one of the most empowering things you can do.

Whitney133. Whitney (and 134. Jake)

Rebecca135. Rebecca
gallery 136. Nikolai, 137. Wen, 138. Tiffany 139. Lisa, 140. Matthew, 141. Fred, 142. Alan, 143. Gregg, 144. Leonard, 145. Alan, 146. Amy, 147. Brian, 148. Diana, 149. Kait, 150. Greg, 151. Christine

 

The Entrepreneurs

And we have all the technophiles.Some are health, some are not. All want to make the world a better place.

152. Katie, 153. Dhruva, 154. Dave, 155. Marco, 156. Kyle,157. Adam, 158. Henry, 159. Jamie, 160. Michael, 161. Andre, 162. Polina, 163. Anish, 164. Adam, 165. Lygeia, 166. Raph,

Marvin167. Stephanie, 168. Marvin

 

The Alturists

And last, but certainly not least, we have all the people who took me in and really had no idea what they were getting into. I can never thank you enough for all the love and care you all have shown me.

Donna and Dennis

 

169. Donna, 170. Dennis

 Konstantin171. Konstantin

 Leonard172. Leonard
Kelli171. Kelli