Sunday, May 17, 2015
Monday, May 4, 2015
I Had Some Dreams; They Were Clouds in My Coffee
One morning, I wake up and want to get my cup of coffee for the day. There's a kink in my plan: Dadzilla is in the kitchen doing who knows what. Sometimes I can deal with this dilemma, but usually, I'm simply not up to being pestered first thing in the morning. I diddle around on the computer for a little while, then I make like I'm going into the bathroom. He's still out there. He must be making lunch. He does everything early-- breakfast at 6am, lunch at 10am, dinner at 3pm, then snacks most of the night.
I hear Dadzilla enter his room, which means he's probably on the way to his bathroom. I make a mad dash for the kitchen. Son of a bee! He's got his spread out for lunch and his meal is in the microwave. No coffee for me. I head back to my room, irritated. I wait a while longer, til I think I hear him go to his room again. I rush back out to the kitchen. The table is clear, so he's done eating. I immediately put the coffee on, and go back to my room.
A few minutes later, I open my door to go check on the coffee. Dadzilla is coming out of his room. He asks if I can take him to the hospital; he's having trouble breathing. I rush out to turn the coffee maker off (naturally, it's finished, but I am denied). I get my stuff together, he gets his stuff together, and we head out to the car.
Half way there, he notices he forgot his wallet. We continue on anyway. I know he's not feeling well, because he's not talking a mile a minute like usual and complaining about anything and everything. I drop him off as close to the emergency room as I can and find a place to park. They admit him even without information and insurance cards from his wallet. He's on the computer system, so there's no trouble.
We're led to an examination room after a short wait. It's not at all like any ER I've seen on TV. I had no idea they made you wait. Apparently, his case isn't critical enough since he can still walk on his own. They examine him and take blood. It takes them about an hour to even get the needle in because his age makes his veins incredibly hard to access.
The man who can't breathe well talks and talks and talks, jokes with the nursing staff and doctors, nags me to go outside and get fresh air. I tell him that if I wanted to go outside, I'd be there already. Even in his condition, the man has to be annoyingly meddlesome.
That's not all. When we're alone he talks again about how we need to “get the hell out of Arizona”. He blames inanimate objects for his ills, so a whole State is nothing. And he has money coming whenever they finish his case. I wonder if it's the same type of case he had for 20-30 years in NY that made that State Dadzilla Enemy #1. It's the mesothelioma class action suit everyone has heard about. Of course his breathing difficulty has to do with mesothelioma from chemicals he once worked with. It couldn't possibly be from smoking for 55-60 years. They took his case anyway, so who knows? What kills me is that he dismisses out-of-hand the possibility that his trouble has to do at all with smoking for decades.
“Wah wah wah wah, wah wah, wah wah wah”. Charlie Brown's teacher is all I hear since I now have a headache. That doesn't stop him. “Wah wah wah, wah, wah wah”. I wonder if they've ever taken someone's voice box out just for the hell of it.
After all is said and done, they tell him his blood work and exams all come out normal. Therefore, they give him a nebulizer to use right there in the ER and a prescription for one for home. They also give him a prescription for some topical cream for some type of ringworm they say is pretty common. He still swears up and down it's from the black mold in his shower. Dadzilla the expert doctor.
Turns out the nebulizer works, and we're back on our way home. There's more pep in his step and he talks the entire way home, so I know he's ok. I'm telling you, he doesn't stop talking for 60 seconds the entire way. Sweet Jesus, get me home! Oh, look. No parking spaces, so I get to park up half a block after dropping Dadzilla off at the entrance. I can never park straight on the street, but I figure if both tires are within a foot of the curb, all is well.
I go through our gate. He is telling his trials and tribulations to some other tenants. I go into our apartment and get my coffee I finished brewing 5 hours ago. The coffee helps my headache. I go online and check email and so forth. Then...oh, good. The awesome internet we have decides to break, just like every other weekend at some point. I'm fed up. The coffee gets rid of my headache, but doesn't prevent me from taking a nap. So that's what I do.
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Ignorance Is Bliss...But Not for Dadzilla
I don't know if it's my meds or middle-age creeping up on me. Seven days and my innards are at a standstill. Luckily, I made an appointment on Friday for Monday in case I'm still having issues, and I am. It's also my yearly check-up so I can keep getting my meds.
“Where ya' goin'?” There's no getting around Dadzilla. He's still in the living room 18 hours per day, guarding both kitchen and the door out to freedom. It galls me how he gets to come and go everyday, as he pleases (which is the way it should be), yet I get inspected like Mexican fruit. He should pretty much be ready for a smart answer when he starts the probing. I simply, curtly reply “Out.”
Simple appointment with the usual questions and measurements. I tell the doctor about my concerns of week-long gut trouble. I have never had this kind of trouble in my entire life. She renews my prescriptions and adds an order for five strong diarrhetics. Of course there are issues with the five pills, and I don't get them til Friday. I resort to using a bag of prunes and it works.
Since the creature is in the living room all the time now, it doesn't go unnoticed, my many trips to the bathroom in a short period. He starts twitching. “Got trouble?” Here we go. “Yes.” I close my door. The trips back and forth continue. “What's wrong?” God, will I ever get peace? What I do in the bathroom is no one's business but mine.
Why does he think he has to know anything and everything. Yes, he's my father, but for the love of all that's good in the world, stop micromanaging me! I grit and clench my teeth. “I have stomach problems.” Of course, that's the problem. Why the hell else would I keep going in and out of the bathroom? To cook dinner?
Speaking of dinner, for that night, I decide to just have some rice with soy sauce. “What are ya' makin'?” Gahhhh...Sweet Jesus, get a life already. I clench my teeth some more, “Rice.” I can usually refrain from creating additional tension, by choosing the path of least resistance. I suspect that's what everyone has done with him most of his life, lest they invoke the spectacle of a temper tantrum, followed in short order by a migraine. I think he thinks people are afraid of him, so he gets what he wants. Not true. I think they give him his way like a spoiled 2 year old, because they don't feel up for all the noise at that particular moment.
I've told him several times that you can't force people to do what you want them to do. What I don't tell him is that that applies to him too. That's why when I need him to do something, I sometimes have to resort to trickery and psychological warfare. It doesn't always work, but it's better than a lot of other options. But: one day I will escape this Dadzilla of mine.
Sunday, April 5, 2015
Does It Make Me Old If I Remember Rotary Phones?
|originally from GeezerPlanet|
So...I'm not elderly by any standard, but I grew up with a rotary phone in the house. I never even thought about that until just now.
Elderly Man Just Wants to Float in the Water
|Originally found at GeezerPlanet|
Friday, April 3, 2015
As If It Couldn't Get Any Worse
One day Dadzilla has trouble moving at all. He manages now and then to make trips to the kitchen. He can even go out to the picnic tables under the gazebo, but whenever he comes in, he talks about how difficult it was for him. I encourage him to make an appointment with the doctor. He waits and waits and waits, then finally goes when he has an appointment for something else.
He tells me ahead of time that he'll need a ride. Of course, I'll give him a ride. Just tell me when the day before the appointment. I don't hear a peep out of him. It's hard telling when the day before the appointment is since he says nothing. I wake up on what is the day of his appointment (I found out later) and he's gone. A couple hours later, he shows up and tells me they took X-rays of his lower spine. I wonder aloud why he drove himself. Oh, he didn't want to wake me. Didn't want to wake me? He wouldn't have woken me if he told me the day before like I'd asked. These are the kinds of things that make me feel less sorry for him and his situation; he takes a difficult situation and makes it that much harder on himself.
Seldom do I push anything further. Why? He'll just have some cockamamie excuse, and the egg shells I continually walk on will shatter and he'll throw a temper tantrum. It's kind of like when he asks me what I need from the store, I tell him, he comes home, and then proceeds to tell me something like he couldn't find it. It could be milk, and he'd say something asinine like he couldn't find it or they were out or something else unbelievable.
So they took the images of his lower spine and tell him that he has some degenerative
disease. Groovy. I don't know what we're going to do if he gets worse quickly. He'd have to get a nursing assistant or other caregiver if it meant toileting or showering issues. I know neither one of us would be comfortable with my doing it. Besides, I don't do poo. I can't physically manage it without vomiting.
They give him some pretty strong pain pills. This doesn't stop him from getting up several times per night to go out in the living room to watch TV because he can't sleep. I suspect he's not taking his pain pills, but I say nothing because of aforementioned reasons.
What his sudden night owl behavior has the nasty effect of doing is having him in the living room even MORE of my waking day. It sounds selfish, but if he acted in any way like a “normal” person, it wouldn't be an issue. Every time I go into the kitchen he has to have something to say, or some snooping to do. Sometimes he'll be especially cranky and ask me what the hell I'm doing out there, that I'm making too much noise. Are you serious?! Too much noise from the man who can't stop banging on the wall and telling the upstairs neighbors to shut the hell up? I've mentioned it a couple times, how hypocritical he is. All I get is flat out denial and yelling. Hypocrisy from him is usually the thing that makes me mad enough to say something, even though I know the result well ahead of time.
Since I now have almost no time alone outside of my room, I go stir crazy. I work more on my internet stuff than ever, trying to make a living to finally be on my own again, live like a normal person, and finally have peace again. I always think to myself, “God, it can't possibly get any worse.” Yet, somehow things usually find their way there: an even worse situation.
<Reminiscences> <cont'd in future post>
<Reminiscences> <cont'd in future post>
Sunday, March 29, 2015
Momzilla the Ostrich
I come out of my room and make like I'm headed for the hall bathroom. I hear the door and Dadzilla. Is he coming or going? He's going, because I hear the rustle of a garbage bag. I wonder if he's just going to take the garbage out or if he'll stop by the picnic tables and sit down to talk.
I can only hope he'll stay out a few minutes, but it's not looking good because it's hot out today. I'm hungry, so I start my frozen dinner in the microwave.
I hear the rattle of keys and I know Dadzilla is back and the door opens. One thing about him is he's seldom quiet, but then I usually have ear plugs in. I head for my room while my dinner heats up, and I manage to skirt Dadzilla. I was undetected, but I'm sure he'll hear the microwave.
I head out to the kitchen after a few minutes and get my dinner. God almighty, he starts whistling. He just can't be quiet and motionless. It's like dealing with an ADHD child. I start on my way to my room. “I don't understand you, Dad. You want everyone else to be quiet, meanwhile you sit there with the TV on whistling.”
“Well, it doesn't matter about the people upstairs; they make so much noise they deserve it. They probably won't even hear me. I guess you don't like it either, huh?”
I take that as a rhetorical question and just continue on my way to my room. Same old drill. He won't listen anyway, so why waste my breath?
Today is my late mother's birthday. She would have been 75. I get to thinking about how she'd make the same trip to her room behind a closed door because of his behavior. He was younger then, so he'd actually follow her sometimes and yell outside her door. Whatever they were arguing about: “The truth hurts, doesn't it?”, “That's right, go bury your head in the sand.”, “Your friends and neighbors think I'm crazy? I'm crazy like a fox.” , “Goddamn New York! This was your idea and I'm getting the hell outta here!”
These are just the recurrent phrases I can think of off hand that I heard repeated throughout my childhood.
I also remember him telling me almost proudly, “You know, I never hit your mother.” Back then, I didn't understand the full scope of the statement. Today, sarcastically I think, “Gee, what an achievement to never have assaulted and battered your spouse. One day, I might aspire to those heights.”