Last Sunday, my kids and I went to get ice cream and the ice cream had been broken down for the night at three local ice cream spots. I quipped that the week was going to be bad, and I could just feel it.
We then proceeded to have 9 successive dumpster fire days with one problem after another.
Last week I wrote about how it all started with my dad falling at Home Depot, to be clear Home Depot’s fault – something quite clear they understand (given how many times they’ve called since).
By the end of the week, we found out my daughter was going to need unexpected surgery, which she had this Monday. My dog also got sick with a UTI, which came to a bill of $682.
Plus, you know, a whole bunch of other random crap…
My dad’s pain in his arm from falling was only made worse by an apparent case of mild food poisoning from some take out over the weekend. He was crabby and angry, and continued to just lash out at everyone in the house, which to be clear was mean and unfair and got more stressful by the day. Today he was totally and completely out of line, yelled at me about something while I was on the phone, and then refused to back off with questions and yelling about his arm when I begged him to give me some space while I got ready to take my kids to school.
Someone called the police, thinking he was abusing me.
This is the way my father has been forever. Family will tell you Uncle Ray has always been a yeller, has always had a perpetual cloud over his head. The pandemic has only worsened that, and his ongoing need to stay safe and not fully resume regular life due to being old and immunocompromised only worsens that.
I’m not sure what about today warranted a call to the cops, but as I was putting on my makeup and my daughter was making sandwiches for tennis, well after he had finally backed off and left me alone, she looked up and saw a policeman at my door. I opened both of the French doors; and stood in my robe like some downtrodden hillbilly, telling him what happened.
I later realized that my robe had been half open; and this neighborhood we still are relatively new in, got a full view of my lady bits.
Yes. You read that right. I am… so… humiliated.
I thought we had moved on from this after the police officer left; and for the most part we did. My dad committed to do better, try harder. He apologized.
Then, after my kids had tennis and school stuff and we returned home, I made dinner and my dad got ready to go for his daily walk.
You can imagine the horror when, right when he was getting up to the door he… again tripped and fell.
This time he was bleeding and his blood pressure was incredibly low, so we called 9-1-1. As it turns out, because of his mild food poisoning and generally not drinking enough because of his arm hurting and him resting more, he was dehydrated; this and his gait (which again I mentioned before) probably contributed to him falling again. They had his blood pressure normalized by the time they got to the hospital, but this didn’t stop them from doing three hours of tests to rack up a bill I anticipate being over $20,000 to Medicare and his supplemental PPO.
So it was an absolute dumpster fire of a day. It was humiliating, the culminating moment of perhaps years of my dad yelling at me like I am still a little kid. Finally, someone from outside our family told him to stop it, to have more respect for me and to appreciate all we do for him. As I stood there in my robe, window blowing and lady bits showing, the police officer lectured my dad about treating me respectfully, being grateful for how much I do for him, and setting a better example for his grandkids. I don’t think anyone has ever stood up for me like that before. Ever, to anyone.
Which is probably a more sad statement of my general surroundings that we can explore for another day, but as a follow up to my post last week, and everything that’s gone on since: let’s hope the lecture works, the lessons were learned, and the dumpster fires are put out once and for all.