Monday, January 22, 2007

Just Me, Grey's Anatomy, and a Box of Kleenex

I know I've been ranting a lot on Grey's Anatomy lately, but I just have to re-cap last week's episode, so to those who don't watch it, please accept my apologies in advance.

George's dad died. It's the most I've cried since Denny died in last season's finale. You know how I always say George is just like this cute little puppy dog that I want to cuddle?? Yup. It just got worse. My heart was breaking for him. Especially after he made that passionate bedside plea with his dad to fight for his life. What a flippin' tear-jerker!! And after they took Mr. O'Malley off of life support, when George emerged from the hospital room to find all of the interns - even Alex - waiting for him, it just set off a whole other set of waterworks.

George, clearly numb with pain and grief, walked slowly by them all, not allowing even Izzie to reach out and offer him comfort and support. Oddly enough, it was Cristina who went after him, and as it turns out, she was the perfect one for him to talk to. She invited him into the Dead Dad Club, and informed him she'd been a member since she was nine. It was one of those rare moments when the soft, sensitive Cristina broke through, and showed for just a second that she's human.

Speaking of Cristina...While she and Burke are still determined not to speak to one another, Burke did bend a little this week when he told McDreamy in front of her that he hasn't had any more tremors in his hand. I just have to believe that the two of them are going to be okay.

As for the whole Addison and Alex development: It turns out that before moving back to Seattle to try and work things out with Derek, Addison had been pregnant with Mark's baby, but she aborted it. The baby, had she kept it, would have been born this week. Incidentally, both she and Mark were miserable as they reflected on what that abortion had done to their lives. However, Addison did end up seeking comfort in Alex's arms, as she finally kissed him (and I mean kissed him!!) at Joe's Bar, and I do believe this may be the yummiest new twist this season!! I'm SO excited to see where the Alex & Addy storyline goes! But the writers really do need to cook up something specialy for McSteamy too. He's been around for a few months now, with no real juicy plot to carry him. Time for McSteamy to have some fun!

Oh, and guess what Izzie did with a big chunk of that $8.7 Million cheque she finally put in the bank? She paid for a young girl to have a very expensive surgery on her back to correct the curvature. When Dr. Bailey realized it was Izzie who had come to the girl's rescue after the insurance company refused to pay for the surgery, she asked her why she had done it. Izzie stammered that she wanted to give that girl a new lease on life and a better future and all of the opportunities that bright young people deserve. Dr. Bailey, however, saw that as Izzie once again being too emotionally attached to her patients, and refused to let her scrub in on the once-in-a-lifetime procedure.

Dr. Bailey, meanwile, had to do a tricky procedure by changing Mr. O'Malley's breathing tube (before his death, of course), and she struggled to maintain her confidence and composure until the chief reminded her that she must keep her distance from the patient. She completed the intubation successfully, but then crumbled following the procedure, and then tearfully told the chief: "My son is named after his son. I just need a moment." Like, talk about rip your heart out and twist it around!! More Kleenexes for Jill! When Mr. O'Malley did pass away at the end of the episode, Izzie found Dr. Bailey and explained to her that she can be both - she can be emotionally attached to her patients and still be their surgeon. And for the first time, Dr. Bailey understood. Watching Dr. Bailey break into sobs as she grieved the death of George's dad was one of the most touching scenes of the season.

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot - Meredith's snoring problem. She finally asked her dad if he snored, because she knew her mother didn't, and when he explained that yes, in fact, he did, and that wax ear plugs worked wonders, Meredith finally found the solution to Derek's sleeping problems. Sweet dreams, McDreamy!

That was definitely one of my most favourite Grey's episodes yet. Seriously. But now I promise to take a little break from Grey's...At least until the next episode! Cheers, gang!


Rachel said...

Hey Jill. Friday night I bought Grey's season 1 and watched the whole thing. Then Sunday I bought the second season and spent the rest of sunday and all day yesterday watching it. I still have two or three dvds to watch. It was a Grey's Anatomy filled weekend, I just couldn't stop!!

Anonymous said...

3 of the last 4 blogs have been about the same show. Jill, I dunno if it's what you are eating or the air over at mountain view... but can we get something dif. :)

I am excited for Saturday! I think it's going to be great!!!

Jill said...

Sorry Sharon, but I did give fair warning and I apologized right off the bat. I love Grey's - I know Kenny & Rachel do too. Can't please all of the people all of the time! A few weeks ago all I wrote about was the Sens - that's just the way it goes sometimes!

Rachel: That's awesome that you've fallen in love with the show the way I have. I watched Season 1 within a few days of buying it (Woermke beat me at that, though - like you, he watched it all in 1 day, I believe!) And I remember 1 weekend after I got Season 2...I watched so much Grey's that I realized I was spending more time with them than real people! It's addictive. Honestly, THE best show on TV!! So glad I hooked you on it too! lol...

Rachel said...

Oh it is soo addictive that I dreamt about it last night. Something about I had to get so many surgeries done in one week, and I was all stressed out! lol.

Jill said...

Rachel, not sure if you check the Grey's Anatomy site regularly, but above is the link to the writer's Blog, and she tells the story of how she created the episode of Mr. O'Malley's death. I cried all over again. Really powerful. Check it out if you haven't already.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Kenny, he hasn't updated his blog in a long time. I was checking it out looking for some updates on the SENS game that was saturday and nothing... nothing nothing nothing... I am dissappointed in that one.

Rachel said...

Unfortunately it is blocked here.

Jill said...

I believe Kenny & Luke no longer have access at work to post comments, and Kenny cannot update his Blog anymore either. They can still read the "main page", but they can't write anything.

Jill said...

Rachel: Here is the Blog I mentioned so you can read it if you get a chance!

Krista Vernoff on life, death, and "Six Days, Part 2"
Original Airdate: 1-18-07

The card at the end of this hour of TV that read “In memory of Bob Verne” was a tribute to my father. He died six years ago at the age of 56 after a very short battle with esophageal cancer. He called me one day at my office at Charmed and told me he thought he had the flu. A week after that he had surgery on a massive tumor at the base of his esophagus. Before the surgery he was laughing and celebrating with family. He had a profoundly positive attitude. After the surgery, he had a massive scar down his belly and was intubated and pale, and upon seeing him, I, who thought of myself as quite strong and educated and capable of handling that moment, started to shake and then hyperventilate and had to be helped out of the room.

During the week we waited for him to recover, we learned that kidney function was of the utmost importance and I became obsessed, absolutely obsessed with his urine output. I checked that urine bag like 50 times a day.

At one point, the doctors gathered the family to tell us that my Dad had a kink in his breathing tube and that they might not be able to get a new one in. They told us we needed to prepare ourselves for the possibility that this was it. We stood out in the hallway and waited, holding our breath, terrified. There was another family there in the hallway, the family of a 16 year old boy who’d been shot on the street on his way home from work in what was feared to be gang related violence, though his family insisted that he was a good kid, that he wasn’t in any gang. They were as scared as we were as they waited for news of condition. We talked to them for awhile, made small talk, then fell silent. And after a long, pregnant pause, one of the teenagers of the family looked over at a member of my family with a very disturbed look on his face. And then he said “Dang. Somebody just farted. And I think it’s this old white guy right here.” My family laughed harder than we have ever laughed in our lives. And my dad lived through the reintubation.

He lived for three more days.

When the surgeon sat us down to tell us that it was time to let him go, he explained that Dad had come to him – behind our backs – on his way into the OR actually – and begged him to proceed with the tumor removal no matter what. My Dad believed, truly believed, that he could fight that caner, that he could live, if only they would remove the tumor. The surgeon did as he wished. And I have yet to completely forgive that surgeon for that decision. Because my dad’s body was riddled with cancer. Plus he had a liver condition and a heart condition. There was pretty much no way for him to recover from a surgery that traumatic. And the surgeon knew that. I believe in forgiveness, I do. I’m a fervent and avid believer that resentment, unchecked, leads to illness and spiritual misery. But I also believe that that surgeon cut my dad in half because he wanted the practice. It wasn’t the right call. He knew better. My Dad didn’t. The scene in which George yells at Bailey and Richard – that scene didn’t happen in my life. Writing and shooting that scene was wish fulfillment for me. What happened in my life is, we went into my Dad’s ICU and put our hands on his body and sang him Beatles songs while the nurses turned off the machines. When they pulled the intubation tubes from his mouth, my sister and I put our faces to his mouth so we could feel the last of his breath. And then he died. And I became a member of the Dead Dad’s club.

I know you didn’t want us to kill Mr. O’Malley. Believe me, I know that. He was funny and warm and kind and too young and too happy to die, just like my Dad. He had children and a wife who loved him and needed him, just like my Dad.

Sometimes life sucks. Sometimes, surgery sucks. (By the way, because Bailey and Richard are Bailey and Richard, I don’t think they did what they did for anything but the highest reasons. I believe they were persuaded by Mr. O’Malley’s plea. I believe they felt they had a responsibility to honor his wishes even if they thought it was the wrong decision. But still, sometime surgeons and surgery suck.) It’s been hard for me sometimes to work on a show that by its very nature idealizes Western medicine and surgery. I believe in both, but only as a last resort. Because I fervently believe (and statistics support) that surgery often does more harm than good. So, one of the reasons I haven’t written an episode since 302 is because I called dibs on this one. I knew which story I wanted to tell.

I’m sorry it was so hard to watch – but I believe that where there is darkness there is light. I believe that from death comes life. I believe that in the face of great pain, families become closer. Friendships become deeper. Life becomes sweeter. And I believe it’s important to be reminded of the loss of love so that we will value and honor the love we have while have it.

I hope you do that.

I hope, that if you were impacted by this episode, you will use it as inspiration to call your Dad or your Mom or a Grandparent or a sibling or a friend or a teacher and thank them for being in your life and tell them what they mean to you.

If you weren’t impacted by this episode, and you just want to write me hate mail that’s okay too. That’s your choice. We all get one life to live. Or, maybe we get reincarnated a lot of times, I don’t know. But like Burke, in my experience science isn’t enough. For me it’s about faith. Some kind of faith. Any kind of faith.

So maybe, while you’re calling your families or sending me hate mail, I’ll put forth a little effort and try, once again, to forgive my Dad’s surgeon…

All my best, Krista

(p.s. those of you who keep writing and begging for dirty, gratuitous Mer/Der sex? I have one word for you: porny. You have porny, porny minds. And I’m not saying that’s a bad thing… : )

(p.s.s. Aren’t you glad little baby Laura is okay? I am. Because as you know I’m expecting a daughter on March 17th. And another thing that’s hard for me about our show is that by necessity, we tell a lot of traumatic baby stories and birth stories. I read a book that helped me undo a lot of the fear those stories had instilled in me – it’s called “A Guide to Childbirth” by Ina May Gaskin. If you’re pregnant or know someone who’s pregnant or are thinking of ever getting pregnant, you should read it. It’s so so so great. Okay, now I’m really done. Bye.)

Rachel said...

Thanks Jill.

Kleenex anyone?

priscilla said...

Well on a happier note, I just walked by Bryan Murray on the sidewalk. He came out of Cafe 349 and he was walking by me looking cross and snobby, so I said hi to him to be friendly and he just nodded his head. Then he got in his big black Cadillac and drove away.

Jill said...

Rachel: I was so glad when I read it that none of the guys were here in the office. They would have thought I was a complete nutcase. My eyes are still red.

PK: Ah, so Bryan is vacationing in Shawville, is he? Sorry he was snobby. My only time meeting Mr. Murray was about 6 or 7 years ago in Murrays Store when he was with Anaheim or Florida or something, and he was very friendly. Except that he told me that the word around the NHL at the time was that Wade Redden was being traded to Phoenix. Ha ha, Bryan, very funny. But I'm sure I've told you that story before! ;o)