An Autocidal Life, Part 5: In Which Babe Lives La Vida Telenovela

Before this post is through, there will be love, marriage, cursing, spitting, and…MURDER.

(If you missed the beginning of our exciting and gross-but-still-riveting story, here it is. It won’t take you long to catch up.)
Oooo…First, Babe Gets All Hot and Sweaty
One night, Babe woke up in a puddle.

Asian Eye Night Sweats

You’d Better Not Be Laughing To Hear I Sweat the Bed.

At first, she thought she had wet herself, but it turned out that she had sweated so much that her perspiration had actually made a puddle on the all-foam mattress. And she was still sweating. (At half the age for hot flashes.)
Then she got the shakes until her teeth chattered–probably from the fever. It reached 104, just like when she had the pinpoint rash. Joe sat by. There wasn’t anything he could do.
From that night on, although the high fever didn’t return, Babe continued to get night sweats, often waking in a cold, wet pool.

Study Questions:
What is wrong with this girl?
Why do you think she doesn’t she see a doctor this time?

Get Ready…Here Comes the Action:
She was being stabbed! Babe saw the knife go into her chest when her killer punched it hard through her breastbone. She felt the horrified shock of seeing it sticking out of her body. She felt the pain worsening.
Every single night, for the next year, Babe was killed repeatedly in her dreams. Some people say you can’t die in a dream. Wrong.
She’s driving a car, flooring it, madly changing directions, but it’s no use: They catch up, and shoot her through the glass.
She’s racing down a cement-walled stairwell so fast she’s scared she’ll trip. Her heart is pounding so hard with fear and panic, she wonders if her chest will burst.
No use. They swing around the landing above her and open up on her with a machine gun. It hurts so much!
Even while she sees her blood pouring out of her chest–even through her tremendous pain–she’s focused on her heart, still pounding wildly. But slowing down quickly now… Stopped.
Miami Vice Tough Guys

Someone’s Dream-Weavers Watched WAY Too Much 80’s Television

Of course Babe didn’t go to a doctor! She didn’t want to be labeled crazy.

Study Questions:
Do you think this girl IS crazy?

First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage
Where Babe gets headaches, hip-aches, and pees a lot.
Babe and Joe got married in 1984. Whoo-hoo! For their honeymoon, they went on a three-week truck-camping trip up the California coast and back down its middle.
Right away, Babe was having terrible difficulties:
For some reason, she had to pee several times every night, which meant climbing over the truck liftgate and stumbling around to squat in the dark and cold.
She had trouble balancing when she first woke up, which made it challenging to miss her feet.
Girl Has To Pee In the Woods While Camping

Like This, But In the Dark.

When she woke each time, her eyes were swollen, and so dry that her lids stuck to them.
Much of the time, she had the most horrible headaches she could imagine–far worse, even, than the awful ones she’d had upon first moving to California.
On top of that, whenever she sat or lay down, her hips hurt deep inside, in their very core. The camping mat didn’t help at all on the corrugated truck bed, and no position brought any relief.
Babe often lay awake silently next to her happily-snoring new husband, suffering for literal hours in the most unbearable pain.
Each day, while Joe was driving into the rising sun, Babe’s head felt like it was a delicate glass shell barely containing her entire self comprised only of her headache. She turned her face away from Joe, leaning it against a pillow on the truck window.
Only rarely would the intense pain from her seated hips distract her by reminding her that they happily lay in wait, in case her headache chose to step aside.
Babe didn’t want to spend their honeymoon complaining to Joe, so she didn’t. She wasn’t being brave:
Babe hid her pain like an abused kid.

Study Questions:
Do they make violins small enough?
Does Babe’s martyr complex ever make you wanna pop her one? (C’mon: At least give her a good shake?)
Silent Movie Drama Queen Martyr

Just SEE How I Suffer So.

Her Crowning Glory Abdicates
[when a ruler gives up her/his throne]
Where Babe imitates a dog.
In 1985, Babe and Joe bought a fixer-upper house in a very rough neighborhood (with an eye to profit).
The house’s previous owners were far from clean. When Babe had first swept out the rooms, she’d been disgusted at the huge clumps of the wife’s long black hair.  Yuchh!!!
What goes around comes around. Within weeks of moving in, Babe was waking up with her own hair on the pillow. Lots of it.
It was summer, so the newlyweds made jokes about how Babe was shedding like a dog, but Babe wondered what the heck was going on. She was starting to get a little worried.
When she next got crusty, peel-y, scabby things on her scalp, even Babe thought she was gross. Where each thing fell off, it left a small bald patch.
She tried different styles to cover the bare spots , but finally gave up and cut it all short. It was a new look for her, but definitely fit the neighborhood.
Bald New Look

Babe’s Bald New Look

Study Questions:
This girl is only STARTING to worry?
Does she seem a little slow to you?

You're Just Getting That Now Slow-On-The-Update

“You’re just getting that now?”…..(First Draft’s Version: “No sh#t, Sherlock.”)

Leave the Room, Kids—Psychotic Alert!!
Where Babe imitates a son of a dog.
Apparently, fate didn’t want Babe to get too comfortable. Along came a new symptom to keep the gods amused:
Fury! Babe had always had a temper, but now, when she lost it, she’d use the “f” word ten times in as many seconds.
This just wasn’t her. She began to refer to this as the “F*ck Index” of her health. But that’s not the really bad part.
During these wild periods, Babe had a scary urge to do something she wouldn’t admit to anyone: To spit! Spit right on the floor!  
Asian Woman Spitting Indoors

Let Me Just Say The Internet Is One D#mned Impressive Place.

What was HAPPENING to her? The feeling was so strong that she sometimes had to give in. Then, embarrassed and afraid, she’d cry while she wiped it up.
Between the murderous nightmares, the cursing, and the spitting on the floor, Babe was positive she was going crazy.

Study Questions:
Show of hands: Who agrees Babe should pack her bags
and head for the cracker factory?

Children Raising Hands

You Even Got the CHILDREN To Go Along? That’s Just Cold.

I admit I exaggerated for effect: Joe didn’t really snore.
Part 6, In Which Babe Becomes A Magnet!


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