Monday, October 23, 2006

Kids:0, Lewy bodies:1

All of the blogging issues aside, I should try to start writing about my time in California. It was quite the scene.

After the issue with the Nose, I boarded a plane and headed to Sacramento. GPS in hand, I rented a car and struck out for my parents' house with no warning from me. Guy did call Daddy that morning and told him, "Sir, I've just put my wife and your daughter on a plane to come see you." To that, Daddy chuckled and replied, "I wish you hadn't done that." Oh boy.

I took a piece of advice from my incredible sister-in-law and stopped at a grocery store. At the local BelAir, I purchased flour, sugar, eggs, vanilla, butter, and sour cream. I was stocked and ready to go with ingredients for a pound cake. When I pulled into the driveway of their house, my cell phone rang. It was Daddy. He wanted to know where I was. When I told him that I was in his driveway, all possibility of animosity melted away. He sounded just like my nephew when he said, "Really? You wouldn't tease me, would you?" I told him to come outside and met him at the end of the sidewalk with a big hug. The pound cake turned out to be secondary to just holding each other for 60 seconds.

As much as I would like to hit publish post right there and forget about it, I can't. That night, I got 90 minutes of sleep. Daddy was up and down all night long. He had accidents in the bathroom, needed his pj's changed, needed help getting in the bed, and needed me to remind him that Momma was in the hospital. The next morning, he was banging on my door at 6:00 AM to get up for the day and help him get dressed.

It is hard to shield your eyes from your naked father while trying to help him put on clean boxers. The dignity lost is from both of you, and I can honestly say that I wished I didn't ever have to do that and so did he.

There was an open wound on his leg. The open part was the size of a quarter. The infection spread to at least the circumference of a baseball. He insisted that it was not infection. I got a Q-tip and wiped off some of the puss to show him. He screamed at the pain, looked at the Q-tip and said that it didn't come from him. Oh boy.

He wouldn't let me take him to the doctor, but (if my ex-husband ever laughs at anything I say again, it will be this statement) he let me put Neosporin and a Band-aid on it. So I did. Twice a day. By the time I left it was beginning to grow some new healthy skin and had quit oozing through the Band-aid within the hour. Nasty.

The next day at the hospital, Daddy got lost trying to find the ICU where Momma was. He introduced me as his sister and told the nice lady that we were trying to find his mother. When the doctor came in the room, he fell asleep in the chair while the nice doctor explained that my mother would have to be moved to a nursing home for rehab. For those of you just joining us, my mother is only 65. Yep. 65.

At this point, we are going on about 40 hours of me being separated from Guy with about 90 minutes of sleep under my belt. I was not stellar.

The doctor pulled me into the hallway away from my father and asked if I had power of attorney for my parents. In my sleep and schmoopie deprived state, I just laughed. If I had known that there were power of attorney papers in the very room where I attempted to sleep the night before, things would have been very different. I explained to the doctor that my father was sick and he and my mother refused to accept the ramifications of that disease. Hell, they refuse to accept the actual disease and just call it Parkinson's. He would just have to try and communicate with them as best he could.

Sure, the doctor told us that Momma would have to go into a nursing home for rehab. Unfortunately, my daddy was asleep and drooling on a chair in the corner. The next day, he turned on me. It became my idea to separate them and to put Momma in a nursing home. I couldn't make him understand that she would come back to him once she was strong. I couldn't convince him that the doctor had talked openly in front of both of us and I just happened to be the one that remained awake. This started the children conspiracy theory. The theory in which his son and daughter were out to strip him of his dignity and keep our mother away from him.

This was the next day, when I had gotten just another 130 minutes of sleep that night. The week was not going to go well.

Advice of the day: Never suggest to your daddy who is only congnitavely challenged 90% of the time that he wear Depends to bed. I guaran-freaking-tee you that you will suggest it to him in the 10% of the time that he is all there. Sheesh.