More Adventures in Parenting Parents

You know that crazy high phone bill you get surprised with when your kid calls some chat line or sends 50,000 texts? I got one of those. Live and learn.

Sitting outside the VA hospital, waiting for Dad to get out of surgery. He’s got this bone burr thing. I read about it, but that was a year ago when they first said he needed to have some simple procedure to have it removed.

Looking for the smoking area I passed the barber shop and there was a tiny old man sitting in the chair, talking to the barber.

Once I start talking about Pearl Harbor and World War Two, I can’t lie about my age, ya know?

Kind of made my day.

It’s been one of those that’s an exercise in patience.

What Are They Feeding Our Children?

So one of my mom’s friends just had a kid on Monday.  Mazel Tov to her!  However, she already has a son (nothing wrong with that) and the kid is terrified of women going into labor because he apparently saw a movie where the mother died in labor.  Ok, the kid’s, like, five, so no big whoop.  He’s allowed to be scarred for life by television and movies.  Where I take issue with the kid (or possibly his parents) is when he asked my mom if she wanted to see his “pet hamster”.

Now, if some kid asked me if I wanted to see his “pet hamster”, I’d be thinking about this:

This is a hamster

Which is, to be honest, what I think everyone expects.  However, my mom got this:

This is NOT a hamster

In a cute, tiny little cage.

So why does the kid think that a tarantula is a hamster?  I haven’t the foggiest idea, although I think it comes from the LSD they’re lacing the mystery meat with in the cafeteria.

Okay, that last comment wasn’t fair.  I don’t know about y’all, but where I went to school, we had awesome food.  They even had this awesome breakfast pizza with egg, cheese, sausage, and sawdust gravy (sawdust not included) and I almost wish I could go back to school just to have that awesome food.  It’s what made the torment, ridicule, and acne worth every painstaking hour of my life wasted inside the cinderblock rooms.

And does anyone have any idea as to why movie is spelled movie and not movy since the rules of grammar state that it should be movy and only movie if there’s an “s” on the end?  STUPID ENGLISH LANGUAGE!

On parenting parents

So my dad woke up about 5am and was fine. He turned the heat up, went back to bed, and woke up not so fine anymore. His left leg is completely numb and he can barely move it. My former Cub Scout dad, raised by a former Girl Scout, was prepared and had a cane. But he’s having a minor attack of vertigo and can barely use it.

Mom and I have told him to call the doctor, but he won’t. He’s too stubborn. He also feels obligated to stay home and care for my recovering mom.

He already feels helpless, having been forced to retire in June due to his disease. So being laid up now is not an option to him. I can completely understand where he’s coming from. After all, everything I know about being a good man I learned from him.

But I also learned about being a responsible adult from my mom, who argues the point, “How can you take care of me if you’re dead?” A very valid point since my dad is currently experiencing symptoms of a stroke.

My grandparents are the same way. They refused the nurses hired to help care for them, and went so far as to call the police to file kidnapping charges on the assisted living home the court ordered them into.

This is why I can’t leave. I don’t want to get that 4am phone call telling me Mom fell or Dad had a stroke. I don’t want to see them turn into my grandparents, with my dad being forced to relieve himself on the floor because he can’t make it to the bathroom and them having their home condemned.

So I stayed, pretending their helping me by saving what I would pay for rent in an account for retirement or school.

But all pretense is now put aside. I make enough I could move out and still save money, so I had to tell them. That was a mistake. Now the little things I did for them I can’t do. They’ve lost that feeling of being the parent and gained the feeling of being parented. And it sucks. For everyone.

At Least I Found the Chapel: part 2

Are you shocked, amazed, awed by the fact I actually posted the sequel post to the post immediately preceeding this one?  Yeah, well, so am I.

Life’s been hectic, lately, with Mom in the hospital, all of her friends and Dad and I all a nervous wreck about all of this.  And now I’m still working the overnight which is going to make me crazy since my dad can’t here.  If she, say, falls, or can’t get out of bed to use the restroom, she’ll be screaming there for a while before he A) hears her and helps, 2) puts his hearing aids in to figure out what she wants, or C) I get home in the morning.  I’m really not okay with that.

I’m also not feeling funny.  Which kind of brings me down a bit.  I started this blog to work on my humor.  I’ve never really been one to be able to put humor into black & white.  I’m that quippy guy who’s full of one liners, not the guy who can write like Erma Bombeck.  But I’ve been trying.  And now all I’ve got is this oh-my-I-think-I’m-going-to-lose-my-mind-before-this-is-all-over thing going on, and that’s not funny.

I mean, if you know me it’s funny, because you get to watch me run around in circles trying to remember what I was doing and then I start taking out the trash before I realize I have to pee and then I finish the trash and can’t remember so I start changing my oil and then realize I really have to go and then I walk inside and can’t remember so I feed the cats and…I think you get the idea.

Really, though, I just wish I had a good, close friend I could pray with.  I have people I can pray with…that’s about it.  This is why no one should ever strive to be a recluse.  When you need people, there aren’t people.  But I have my blog, and I have Facebook and MySpace and Twitter and the 8 pages of apps on my iPhone to keep me going and smiling and able to feign happiness at a moments notice.  So today, I have decided, I’m going to go to McDonald’s and order a HappyMeal with extra happy before work and smile all the way through.

If that doesn’t work, I stopped and got some vodka.  Vodka is the cure for everything.


So the risk management lady (or whatever she’s called…let’s just call her Tammy) called today to say that Mom has to go to rehab for at least three or four days.  And, of course, my mother, being the wonderfully mature person that she is, is refusing to go.  She doesn’t want to be moved to a better facility (she’s at the county hospital right now) nor does she want to be taken out of the surgical department.  If she wasn’t in the hospital, I’d kill her.  It’s no fun doing it while she’s there because they’ll just save her, and that makes for an awkward Thanksgiving.

At least I found the chapel

So my mom fell at work yesterday afternoon and broke her pelvis. I think. Last night they said that the socket for the ball and socket joint broke off like a cupboard opens on an excruciatingly painful hinge and today I was told it was the ball at the top of her femur that broke off and lodged in her pelvis. All I know is thinking about it makes me queezy because I can imagine what that pain was like.

Her phone has been ringing non-stop. The cell AND room phone. And my poor dad who can’t here shit has been trying to talk to all these people who are all bossy, pushy teachers. And they’re all (yes, ALL, every last one of them thanks to her former principle (she’s a retired school lady teacher type person) making an announcement about Mrs. Odell falling and breaking and hospital and, yeah) coming up here today. So, yeah, she needs the rest she’s getting right now with my dad and aunt gone.

And they had the heat set to, like, a million and a half Kelvins in here for the longest time. So, yeah, now that I’m all sweaty they cut the heat on.

But I’ve got my Tanakh, and am reading about Job, so I totally don’t feel like things are NEARLY as bad as they could be.

PS: I apologize for all the caps. I’m updating from my iPhone (because I’m all cool and tech savvy despite not quite knowing how to work foursquare) on the app and don’t know how to do bold or links or really anything other than simply type stuff.

This doesn’t mean I want an iPad, though. I think I’ll wait till I actually NEED an incontinence product.

And, yes, I totally DID just go there.

*Update: I completely forgot to tell the chapel story and also tell the hot guy story so neither the title nor tags make any sense.  I’m under a bit of pressure.  Why do you people expect so much from me?!?!?!

Who writes this shit? Oh, wait, I do…

So I found this site for writing prompts since I’m sitting here, completely zombified (I swear, I’m not infected!), and unable to come up with an interesting post when I find the following prompt at this site:

4. A woman walks across the street and is hit by a bus……

I didn’t get any further than that because I almost fell out of the chair laughing.  Who writes this shit?  I mean, honestly, how sick and twisted to you have to be to make a writing prompt about that?  Yeah, sure, I’ll write about a woman getting hit by a bus.  Stupid bitch should have looked both ways.  Didn’t her mother teach her anything?  See, this is what’s wrong with America today.  I blame the schools!

In other news, my dad completely interrupted my “quiet time” to A) apologize for wishing me a good evening when I go to work (it’s okay, I don’t understand it either) and 2) to tell me he wants this for his birthday this year.

Yep.  That’s my dad.  He also asked me to build him this for this past birthday.  Needless to say, it didn’t get built.

Then again, this is my dad, who makes sure to use the John Deere tractor on our 50 sq ft front lawn…in Texas…THERE IS NO GRASS IN TEXAS!

Sorry, Daddy isn’t here right now

So I’m a single 20 something who lives with my folks.  Not a great thing when you don’t necessarily want to be single, but I’d rather be single and know my parents aren’t burning the house down than get that phone call at 3pm.  No, wait, I totally DID get that phone call at 3pm…while I was at work…and living with my parents…

But I don’t get that phone call as often as I did when I lived in Georgia.  Parents are like children when they’re older.  They constantly want attention, are needy, and usually wait about two weeks to let you know that, oh, yeah, we need a new washer.  Wait, why do we need a new washer, mom?  Oh, you mean you thought it would be okay to put 3 comforters in our small home washer after all the years you yelled at me that I couldn’t even put ONE comforter in it?

No, I’m not mad at you.  What are you talking about?  I’m not yelling at you.  I promise.  It’s okay.  Have some fish sticks and mac & cheese while you watch Sponge Bob before you take your nap, okay?

I don’t have any children, yet I constantly have to play “Daddy isn’t here right now” with my parents.

Like the time they thought my grandmother died but didn’t let me know for two weeks.  I thought they died and they were all “No, we’re alive, but we’re not home, we’re in Arizona” and I’m all “Yeah, I know, Aunt Betty totally called me when she heard my message on the machine about how none of the hospitals had ya’ll in there database as dead or injured.  And by hospitals, I mean every hospital between Savannah and San Antonio on I-10” and they were all “oh, sorry, we forgot to call” and I’m like “yeah, you were supposed to call 2 weeks ago.  You’re grounded.”

I still give them a hard time about it because THEY STILL DO THAT.  Like, my mom’s tire started to shred so my dad put the spare on.  That’s nice.  No one told me until the spare started to shred.  Um, hello, how can I fix it if you don’t tell me?  “We wanted to do it on our own.”  I can’t fault them for that.  They’ve been independent since the ’50’s (my dad) and ’60’s (my mom) so it’s completely understandable that they feel awkward and insecure about having they’re youngest son take care of them.

But when my mom fell and broke her arm at work, I should have gotten a phone call.  Instead I get a text message saying she got out of work early, not to worry.  And then a month later I find out she slipped and fell, chipped her hip, tore her rotator cuff, and broke her elbow.  How did I find out?  She slipped and fell at her new job and they made her go to the hospital.

Um, yeah, you are so grounded.  You are only now allowed to leave the house to go to work.  No phone.  No tv.  Understand?

My parents are going to totally make go insane.