11 March 2009

Just lose it

So then.

I had to work last night. I got to interview Rainn Wilson of "The Office," which sounds a lot more interesting than it was, given that he had fasted all day and was tired and punchy and ADD and I was tired and had talked to about 20 people who had stories so much more amazing and compelling than his that I was a little worn out by then, so we both sort of bored each other for 4 minutes before jumping up, relieved to be done.


I had told the folks at least three times that I was not coming by their house after work because I had to go to my other job.

At 6 pm I got a call from my dad asking where I was. They were worried.

Crap. I reassured him and told him I would not be coming by in the morning, either, because I was going to work at home.

This morning at 7:45 I got a call from dad.

"Are you sleeping?"

"No, Dad, I'm working."

"Where are you?"

They were worried because I didn't come by. Thus, I learned my lesson. When I deviate from my regular sched, no matter HOW many times or how recently I tell them, I MUST write it on the calendar. My bad.

Today I picked Dad up at 4 and took him to see his tax preparer. We rode downtown and back, chatting.

When I got back to the house, I started talking to Mom.

"....that's what the home health care lady did yesterday," Mom said in the middle of something.

"What home health care lady?" I asked.

"The one that came yesterday," she said, as if that were a perfectly normal occurrence.

"There was a lady here yesterday?" I said.

"Oh, there were lots of people here yesterday," Mom answered. "Firemen, paramedics, ambulance..."

"WHAT?" I asked.

Apparently Mom's new meds had disagreed with her. She hadn't been sleeping and sometime on Wednesday, someone (I still don't know who) called 911 because Mom was feverish and disoriented. She was assessed and refused to go to the hospital.

She doesn't know where the home health care lady came from or who sent her. Neither does Dad.

I tried to pry details from her, but Mom just waved her hands around and insisted I go get some Burger King for dinner for her and dad.

When I got back from BK, I sat at the table as they dove into their hamburgers.

"Why did no one tell me what happened?" I asked.

"Well, we tried," Mom said. "Dad called you last night and this morning but you were busy and I tried to call you this afternoon and you didn't answer."

"Did you leave a message?" I asked. I had not heard the phone ring but maybe I was in the middle of a call?

"Oh no, there was no message, just one ring, and a click, so I figured you did not want to be bothered since you wouldn't answer" my mom said.

I do not generally speak sharply to my mom. Oh, maybe about once every...oh 47 years. But oh man, I lost it.

"LOOK," I said. (If I am mad, you can count on me to say "Look.") "Dad called me last night and didn't mention that you were sick. He called me this morning and didn't mention it. He and I spent half an hour in the car and he did not say a word. And you did NOT leave a message, so how was I to know what was going on? No one told me anything and that is SO wrong and SO unfair and I need to know what is going on because I love you and I would drop ANYTHING, anything if you needed me and you should know that by now!"

Do I need to mention I was sob-yelling by then? Gah.

Yeah, I was mad. And I was offended. And at the same time I understood that they don't have the capacity that they once had.

But the point I was really trying to impress on them, and I think I was successful - was that they really, really need to tell me what is going on and not pussyfoot around.

This elderly parents thing is as much fun as a barrel of monkeys. Face-tearing, testicle-mauling monkeys.

I have a knot in the neck the size of a Cadbury egg. And my teeth hurt from grinding them. So I am going to listen to some old skool Eminem and go to my happy place - while shouting "Aaah-aaah-aaah!"


Violet the Verbose said...

Omigosh, Suebob! That SUCKS! I hope they did get the message, 'cause GEEZ! I'm so glad your moms is okay!

My mom had some awful vomiting illness recently and my did didn't even know she was having problems because that's how well they check up on each other and how often the communicate - and their house also has a very long hallway, and Dad probably had the TV on and doesn't hear as well as he used to either... yeah. Yikes.

CharmingDriver said...

Grief and goodness, I am so sorry. I'm glad your mom seemed better the next day but ...yeah. It sucks to parent your parents.

Hugs. Hang in there, babe.

Kizz said...

Oy, so sorry.

Average Jane said...

Sorry you have to deal with all of that.

Suzanne said...

Suebob, that is awful. I'm glad that your mom is doing better, though.

Project Christopher said...

I feel for you. Been there, done that. I am impressed and proud, though, that you seem to acknowledge what so many people don't... they don't have the same capacity that they used to. My sister used to get aggravated with my mom & step-dad because of reason XYZ and would get angry. It was all I could do not to get angry with her because our parents were either over 80 or approaching it and they didn't think they way they used to so either yell at the rain or realize we have to mold to their thinking to get through.

I hope you're feeling better... we're all behind you and sending you good karma :)

Suzanne said...

I sort of hate to comment on the celebrities you include in this post, as they are so obviously beside the point, but I'm bummed that Rainn Wilson did not make for a good interview. He seems so interesting, and like Rahm Emanuel, Ann-Margaret, and Liz Phair (and Donald Rumsfeld and Charleton Heston), went to my high school. As for Eminem, it kills me how talented he is and what a challenging human being he also is. I so hate myself for enjoying his music - I am cringing while grooving along.

mar said...

glad your mom is okay now. infuriating because they assumed you were 'too busy' for them without filling you in on what was going on. obviously if some medical emergency came up you'd drop anything & everything for them! you're over there every day & the one day you're not, all hell breaks loose! ain't that murphy's law.

SUEB0B said...

Suzanne - I didn't mean to imply that Rainn Wilson was anything other than totally cool and great.

It was more of a timing thing and I'm sure we would have had great fun under other circumstances. We were just at an event he hosted where people were telling me all night about their families who had been imprisoned, tortured and killed in Iran (these are Baha'i people) so after that, my head wasn't really in fan-girl mode.

Swistle said...

I'm glad you did a little yelling. I don't like it when people slip into...whatever that is they slip into, when they're like "Oh, I'm sure you're far too busy to care about little old me and my silly little heart attack."

Issas Crazy World said...

I hope yelling made your point. Sometimes people just need to know you are serious. I'm glad she's okay though.

mothergoosemouse said...

At first I thought, OMG Rainn Wilson!

But then I read the rest and really identified. My parents aren't as old as yours. and I don't live near them, but it brought me back to the conversation I had with my father's PCP when he was in the hospital. You know, after my mother had waited three days to tell me he was in there, and another week to tell me he had yet to see a specialist.

I'm glad your mom's okay. And you know I love Eminem.

Kalyn said...

Oh Sue, believe me when I say I know just what you are going through here. Glad your mom is okay, but yes, this is seriously hard. I keep wondering why no one mentioned this part when the parents become unreasonable and have to be watched every minute. Sigh.

Janet said...

Sister, I am so there with you on the parent/child switcheroo. And since I never had children, I feel like I skipped the elementary school and junior high of caregiving school and I've been thrown into the AP classes with no preparation.

Kay said...

Yikes! Well glad she is ok...

My parents do teh same darn thing.

"Well don't you remember last yar when your baby sister had that ovarian cyst?"


"Oh, guess we forgot to tell you, you were probably busy..."


jaded said...

Wow. The parent thing is deja vous. Strength.

flurrious said...

I think aging parents are much harder than children because in certain respects they're so resistant to being taken care of. They're afraid of losing independence so they'll pretend that they're able to handle whatever comes up, even when they can't. My dad and I went through a whole thing when I wanted him to stop driving. Even though I was pretty much driving him and my mom everywhere at that point, he still wouldn't sell the car because, he said, "there might be an emergency." Um, yeah, dad, in case of emergency, you're the guy I want on the road.

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