08 February 2024

I haven’t gotten shit done this week.

Monday I went to Carrie’s to work on various things and she wasn’t home. I have a neighbor here in the trailer park, Brenda, who visits there daily and her vehicle was there but the front door was closed. Carrie has told me in the past that I’m welcome there anytime if I need an internet connection, but I felt weird visiting with her gone and I wasn’t sure why Brenda would have the door closed so I noped out of there and went home. Then I found out later that Brenda hadn’t been there to start with. She had driven over to Carrie’s and Carrie took her to a doctor’s appointment. So it’s just as well.

I suppose I should mention Carrie is a retired teacher. So I’m guessing she likes to have stuff to do during the day. She’s also very kind, but even a kind person is capable of feeling ill-used, so I can’t imagine she’d be this helpful to random people not even closely related to her unless she wanted to be.

(I mention “not closely related” because unless someone somewhere got their entries wrong on Ancestry, Carrie’s maiden name turns up in my family tree. I’m pretty sure we’re cousins. Not that that is very much of a stretch around here. There’s a reason we’re the second largest reservoir of Tay-Sachs disease after the Ashkenazi Jewish community.)

Anyway. So. Carrie not home on Monday. Well then, thinks I, how about Tuesday. Well, Dad wanted to go run errands. So that right there was a couple hours shot and I already got up a bit later than I’ve been getting up because I’d gone to bed Monday night a bit later than I’d been going to bed. So by the time I might have gone anywhere, it was after 2pm. I don’t like going over there only to be there, like, two or three hours because her husband gets home around 5 or so and I don’t like to overstay my welcome. So I put it off again.

The other thing that’s happened this week, yesterday, is Dad fell.

And please don’t feel like I’m being careless in only remembering just now. I actually did remember when I sat down to write this but a whole bunch of other stuff came up in my mind and it got pushed aside. Sorry.

As falls go it wasn’t terrible by young-person standards, but I’m waiting to see what the effects on him are after a few days into it because 70somethings are more fragile. He didn’t hit his head, but he did hit his hand. It’s along that same bone line as the pinky finger on his right hand. So… distal metacarpal? I think? Don’t ask me. I hear this shit in passing and sometimes it sticks and sometimes not. But one of those bones. I saw the bruise right after it happened and it looked a little nasty but wasn’t dark, and it had flattened out a lot by a few hours into the injury. I have consulted with Doug and we think that if he did break it then it could just be a hairline fracture, and Doug says men often break that bone anyway from hitting incorrectly when they punch things. It’s also possible, as Dad thinks, that it is just a deep bruise. I already offered to take him to the doctor and he wouldn’t hear of it.

He also seems to have hit himself somewhere else, I want to say hip maybe, but he walks just fine and that one would have been a lot more noticeable if something had broken. I haven’t seen it. He told me about that one.

He ALSO didn’t want me telling anyone about it, but he didn’t say this to me until I had already reported his accident to Doug and Carrie and as far as I’m concerned, he can kiss my ass because if I don’t tell someone when this shit happens, next thing you know someone will think I’m beating him or something. I want someone outside this situation to know what is happening as much as humanly possible. I don’t broadcast every detail all over social media anymore, and it’s reasonable for him to expect me not to if he even thinks about it (he only has a vague notion of what social media is in the first place), but 99.9% of the people there couldn’t do a damned thing for me or him anyway. I’m certainly going to fucking take notes here.

He at least asked me, when he fell and once I got him upright, to dump out his latest drink and also what was left in the whiskey bottle. I guess it finally sank in that when he drinks he’s less good at walking safely. I had already noticed that his tread is heavier and more shuffly when he is not sober, and shuffling = stumbling. But you can’t tell him anything. He has to figure it out for himself. I suppose we are all like that to some extent. He’s worse than average and it is not a safe trait in the elderly. I don’t believe for a minute that was his last drink, either. If he has to attend a social event again, he’ll go back to the bottle. I think it is his answer to anxiety meds. I will be very surprised if no one else in his life has noticed that. Xanax wouldn’t have been an improvement, though. None of those meds really are.

Honestly, he could come up with any excuse to go back to it. That get-together at Aunt Emily’s just seemed to be his trigger when he started again after allegedly being off it for a month and a half. And he could have lied about that too. Everyone said they could tell he had quit drinking because he looked so much better, but face it. As bad off as he had been in the hospital, that could simply have been him healing up. We will never know for sure. Most people who would have taken him shopping before I got here were likely cautious about what he got, but his cousin Kathy isn’t. Saw that for myself.

I wish I knew why men are ever so eager to lie to me. Doesn’t seem to matter who the man is.

(And while we’re at it? Every single one of those muhfuggers in his family knows he has a drinking problem. Several of my relatives had alcohol at the get-together, and they drank it right in front of him. What the fuck were they thinking? Look. Shit or get off the pot. If a known alcoholic is welcome at your gathering, have the decency to not drink in front of him. If you want to drink, don’t invite him. Simple human decency. I could regale you with tales of why Southern courtesy is a bullshit concept. That was one right there.)

(If anyone from that camp is reading this: No, that’s not why we didn’t show up for Emily’s and Bill’s 40th anniversary party. We did not show up for that because Dad plotted to play a prank on Emily that I privately thought would have been cruel to do. He wanted to send me to Walmart with cash to buy the prank item beforehand. I didn’t think I’d find it there anyway but also, I didn’t want to be party to a mean trick. I am hoping it was just something that sounded funnier in his head and that he didn’t actually mean to be an asshole, but nevertheless. Happily, if I stall long enough he’ll often forget something, and in this case he seemed to lose track of his plans and stopped bringing it up. But NOW I THINK ABOUT IT, we dodged a bullet twice over. If people were drinking for Christmas, I hate to think what they were doing at that party.)

Then there was today. He slowed down a whole lot after the fall. He still gets around okay in the house, but we went to Walmart yesterday and he’s regressed. He had to use one of their disabled carts again. He hasn’t needed one the whole time I’ve been back and I’ve been here since December. He’s also been napping more. There was some of that before the fall but it’s as bad or worse now. Some of it’s been the drinking. I wonder if some of it is now his drying out. No idea. I didn’t really want to go anywhere with him like this though. Also we were expecting Deborah to come by and clean (she and her husband are kind of on hard times and Dad hires her to help her out) and there was a chance she’d come by while he was sleeping, and one of the things she does is wash his sheets so I wanted to be here to make sure he was awake. She didn’t come by, though. Turns out she came down with something and stayed home.

Or maybe I am getting confused myself and Deborah’s non-visit was yesterday. I dunno. I feel like I’m in a perpetual summer vacation and I don’t even get to have any real fun.

Well, we’ll see how things go. I don’t know anything anymore.