It’s likely that I won’t be able to post as much as usual for a while.
A lot has been going on while those baby robins were being born, and much of it is not good.
My father is 87 years old. For some time now, he has been in and out of the hospital on a fairly regular basis. New pacemaker (which was not the correct sort, he had atrial fibrillation so did they put in a defibrillating pacemaker the first time???), then another new pacemaker. He keeps falling, he is supposed to be using oxygen but doesn’t because he feels that his heart needs the exercise it gets if there is not enough oxygen and it has to pump harder to get the stuff to his tissues.
No, no. You can’t tell him anything, you know. He knows everything already, always has. This stubbornness has not been alleviated by approaching old age.
He lives alone in a house filled with stairs at the end of a half mile long driveway that crosses a hollow and is now (due to our recent rains) badly washed out. For some time, we have all been urging him to get help with housekeeping, or to move to someplace where people can help him. He doesn’t need help, he is fine. He can take care of himself. He will die in the house, no he won’t move. Blah blah blah
However, the latest hospital stay has been quite educational.
For some time, we have tried to get him out from behind the wheel of his car. We even filled out requisite paperwork for that to happen, but in their inifinite wisdom, the State Troopers who examined him after those papers were filed decided that he was perfectly capable of operating a motor vehicle without any restrictions. This is because he is perfectly capable of reciting the correct responses to questions, and can convince people in authority that he is just fine. Right before that decision, he totalled his car. Since then he has only dented it badly twice. Right now it can’t be driven because a fender is in contact with one of the tires.
Last Tuesday he wound up in the hospital for the second time in two weeks because he was so seriously dehydrated and his electrolytes were so low that he was pretty much on the verge of organ shutdown. He was so confused he could not figure out how to write a check, even with mother telling him every line item.
He is still confused. The other day when Mom and I went to visit, he was sitting in the big comfy chair the hospital provides, staring fixedly at the TV. I asked him how he was doing, and he said “I’m here. What I can’t understand is why I can’t get the TV to work.” The item he had in his hand and was pointing at the television was the room phone, not the TV remote. I pointed this out to him, and after a couple of beats, he agreed that it was the phone. Pettishly, he threw it down on the bed, and asked where was the remote, then?
When we arrived home, we found about seven messages on Mother’s answering machine. When you reach an answering machine from the hospital phone, the automated system in the hospital plays you a message: “You have reached a remote answering device. Please hang up and call your party again when someone can answer the phone.” He had been pressing “redial” on the phone over and over trying to get the volume to come on on his television. She was the last person he had called that morning. Sad. And funny too, actually.
Anyway, while he is
incarcerated in the prison under medical care my mother and sister decided he needed to be moved to town willy nilly. They convinced me (it wasn’t that hard) that this was the best way. So we have been moving his stuff into a nice two bedroom apartment in town (2 minutes from my house). We have one of his cats there, the other has yet to be caught. (To say Shadow is shy is an understatement.)
And so far, Daddy does not know this is happening.
My mother and sister believe we should just take him there. I think we should tell him while he still in the hospital so he can process the idea.
So I have been dusting everything that goes into the new place. Believe me, the home this stuff came from is filthy filthy filthy. Cats that don’t use an unscooped catbox is the least of the problems.
We discovered during this process that all those medications that the doctors prescribed? All those prescriptions he dutifully filled and claimed he was taking? Nope. Not been taking them. No wonder his congestive heart condition was not getting better.
Oh, I could go on and on. But you get the picture. If and when he gets well enough to be released from the hospital, and I can tell you it doesn’t look good, he will be moved into this new apartment with his cats. Jim and I will be on the hook for making sure he eats (he hasn’t been eating) and takes his medications. And to transport him about.
Meanwhile, on Thursday afternoon, another swarm of bees appeared in our yard so we captured them. Now we have two hives of bees.
I have a load of Dad’s stuff on my truck, I need to eat something, feed my dog and get over to his apartment to unload the shit. Then I’m going up to the hospital to visit. Jim is at work.
My garden is beautiful. When I get to look at it.