Underneath my yellow skin

Living dat video game life

One of my favorite stories to tell about my medical crisis is what happened when I talked to Ian for the first time. It was the second day I was awake (after a week of being unconscious). I was high as a kite from all the drugs flowing throw my veins. I didn’t know which was up, but I knew who Ian was. I was elated to see him and I started babbling at him in a language that only we would understand–video games.

My favorite video game is Dark Souls III by FromSoft. I’ve played it at least two dozen times (counting each NG cyicle as a playthrough). I’ve finally platted it, which made me hate it for several months. Now, it’s my favorite game again with Elden Ring JUST behind it. That means I know just about everything there is to know about Dark Souls III--though I still learn new things about it from time to time.

One of the trailers for it was in the stlye of an 80s action video, which was hilarious as fuck. I’ll include it before. It crackled like it was on a VHS tape and was just amazing. It was very tongue-in-cheek about how hard the game is and how you best be ready to die again, and again, AND AGAIN.

It shows that Bandai Namco Bandai has a sense of humor, which I appreciate. I also like how they poke fun at Dark Souls reputation for being a hard game. I mean, they are hard games, but that should never have been the focus of them.

The tagline for the trailerĀ  is, “When you pick a fight with the devil, you better be stronger than hell.” I babbled this to Ian repeatedly and told him I had been stronger than the devil and that I had won–twice. Later, after I get out of the hospital, I apologized to him for saying it a million times for half an hour. He laughed and said, “Minna, it was two minutes and you said it twice. I was so happy that you were alive, I didn’t care what you said.”

I think I said ‘If you pick a fight with the devil” not “When”, but point still stands. I took on death, and I fucking won. I wrote a piece for PCGN about my experience and how waiting for Elden Ring gave me hope. In it, I started it by mentioning dying twice and how while I expected to die in a Souls game, I never expected to do it in real life. Until i did it for real, I mean.

While I was unconscious for a week, I was on a life support machine. I could not breathe on my own so the machine was doing it for me. That meant that I was a zombie! I mean, in theoretical terms, not literal ones. I was not breathing on my own, but my body was still functioning. That sounds like a body to me.

It’s so weird. I was living my life like a normal person, not doing anything out of the ordinary. Then, I got hit with walking non-COVID-related pneumonia, two cardiac arrests, and a stroke (which starts like the beginning to a bad joke).

By the way, it’s hard for me to go out these days. Given all that I’ve gone through whilst out in public, I honestly feel safer just holing up in my house.

It’s funny. I was on the life support machine for the week I was unconscious. I was alive, yes, but I could not breathe on my own. That’s just lije a zombie! They are technically alive, but cannot breathe. They are the living undead, which was pretty much what I was.

I never expected to live a video game life, but that is what happened to me. I’m back to normal now that I’ve respawned, but it’s still quite an experience. I don’t know what to say about it, though, because so much of it happened while I was unconscious. I don’t remember any of it, so it’s hard to believe it actually happened to me sometimes.

I accept that it happened. I don’t question that as my reality, but it’s strange that something i don’t remember at all has had such a big effect on me. It’s the defining moment of my life so far, and I remember none of it. I know what happened because others have described it to me, mostly my brother. But the last thing I remembered was messaging with Ian the day before I ended up in the hospital. Then nothing until I woke up, and I barely remember my first day awake.

The socend day, I talked to Ian and Kathleen on Zoom. Apparently, I talked to Ian and my Taiji teacher/friend on the first day through Zoom, but I don’t remmeber that at all. The only thing I remember from the first day was waking up, mad, scared, and disoriented, not knowing what the hell was going on. i was ready to fight someone, even though I had no idea who needed fighting.

It was the most bizarre experience of my life. I cannot describe how it made me feel or what I went through. There are not the words. Nor can I explain how much better I am now than I was before it happened. That’s the stuff of movies, actually. A bad thing happens to you and then you just get stronger. That’s an inspirational movie, for sure, and I would not believe it if I saw it.

I don’t want my life to be a video game or a movie. But, that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the irony of the fact that my medical crisis can be talked about in such terms. I am glad I survived, obviously. I don’t think that needs to be said. I do wish I could remmeber what acutally happened to me, but it’s not something I can do anything about. I appreciate what I have, though that fades a bit each day. Not the appreciation in general; I mean the overwhelming amount of awe I felt when I first survived.

I would love it if my life were made into a video game. Come to think of it, though, there really wouldn’t be much to do if that were the case. Far better just to live it instead.

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