Christina Kotlar

Year of Rabbit 2023

Christina Kotlar

Block Island Duo

Starting out as introverts, both Yuri and I read voraciously and were proliferate in writing cards, responding to letters, and sending postcards to friends. We kept diaries, calendars, writing tablets, and leather-bound journals for most of our lives. Scraps of paper, postcards, and small calendar books mark my events and journeys. We have letters, photos, and ticket stubs. Ephemeral things. Tactile items that trigger a memory. A moment in time that makes us who we are.

For ver thirty years, our lives crisscrossed from the early 1970s at dive bars and concert halls to our connection at a 2009 Kinderhook reunion event. At the after-party, I asked him to be a guest on my podcast Film Festival reViews. We had such a great conversation that it turned into a two-part podcast, Episodes 66 and 67.

Music-making and the art of conversation finally merged. I adore his syntax. We have been together ever since on roads less well-traveled, taking opportunities to live our lives as an adventure of a lifetime. When Yuri was injured by the mRNA vaccine, these stories have become one of a kind, one in a million.

a memoir

Love Letters from the ICU

by Christina Kotlar

The nightmare began in March 2021 when my husband, jazz violinist Yuri Turchyn, received the Pfizer shot in order to return to his life as a working musician. Little did we know that an autoimmune attack triggered by the mRNA spike protein in the Covid vaccine would nearly kill him.

When doctors misdiagnose Yuri’s condition, he is sent to the ICU on two separate occasions. I was forced to overcome a steep learning curve in medical practices that push drugs, specialists, and experimental treatments. The harsh realities of making life-altering decisions threw me into a cycle of turmoil, hoping someone would save us. With the help of Yuri’s best friend from college, a board-certified critical care physician and trauma surgeon, we formed a team of medical professionals and a supporting cast to decode the mysteries of medical procedures, data-driven assessments, and a hierarchical hospital system run by private equity administrators.

LOVE LETTERS FROM THE ICU covers four decades, including Yuri’s musical career and our love story. It is also a reflection on the transformation from an analog universe to a digital one and how it impacted our medical journey…


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