Monday, July 16, 2007

History....Part 2

Okay, to tell this saga correctly I need to say that over the past few years, when I would have contact with my dad and stepmother, I would notice that Dorothy (stepmother) would repeat herself, occasionally. And then more often. For example, within an hour of conversation, she would say the same thing or tell the same story four or five times. I realized and even had a conversation with my dad about the possibility that she had Alzheimer's. He could not get her to go to the dr, she didn't realize that she was doing it.

So, back to the story...

We got up early the morning after the phone call from my dad's friends, and left for the little town in southern Missouri. It's about a six hour drive from here and we arrived about noon. I couldn't believe the condition my father was in. He was always a huge, scary man...at least six foot, four inches and a good 275 pounds, not fat, just solidly built. But the man that i was looking at then was a skeleton....and he was old. He looked really old. It had only been perhaps a year or two since i had seen him, and I couldn't believe the changes. And I knew he was gravely ill, the moment I saw him. He was happy and stunned to see me. He asked why I was there, and I told him that i had heard that he was not well, and that I was worried about him. It was a good visit, he seriously was happy to see me. We only stayed a few hours, but left with promises to call, and I told him I would be back soon. Dorothy, on the other hand, did not seem so happy that I was there. Her condition at that time was just downright looney. Seriously. A complete whack job. I met her sister for the first time that day, her name was Barbara, and I could tell that she cared about my dad very much, and also had a difficult time getting along with Dorothy.

Again, to tell this story correctly, I need to say here or at some point, that my dad and dorothy had a strange relationship, I rarely saw little, if any love between them, and he wandered, ALOT. Everyone in town knew that he screwed around on her, and I know she HAD to know about it as well, but never let on like she did, at least with me. He had at least two long term relationships that I knew of over the years, with women that were also married, and one of them, I believed he really loved. She was married to a friend of his...some friend, eh? Her name was Kathy. Okay...so on with the story.

Within days, I got a call from Barbara, telling me that my dad had a hard-to-diagnose form of lung cancer. Prognosis----not so good. Aggressive chemotherapy, perhaps radiation....time would tell. My dad called me and told me that he had loved seeing me and wanted me to come back soon. So, I did-the very next weekend. By that time, Dorothy had taken a real turn for the worse, and Dad a Barbara had forcibly taken her to the retirement home/nursing home so that some tests could be ran, and get her help with medication. She was furious, and really didn't believe that anything was wrong with her. It was a temporary move, one that hopefully wouldn't last too long, but dad needed real help, and she had lost it. She also needed help, hell...she was going to burn the house down, and had no idea that she was out of her mind. She couldn't/wouldn't get him his medications,would not make his meals, or get out of bed when he threw up all night....and when I got this time, Dorothy was already gone. H and I took over for the weekend, and took care of him. It was hard for me to see this, big, scary intimidating man needing anything from anyone. But I did discover, that at least for the time being, he was quite decent to me, and quite grateful for us being there. I was seeing a new person...someone that I didn't know ever existed...one that i even felt a little love from. On that Saturday, I went to the nursing home to see if Dorothy needed anything, and holy-shit was she ever hostile to me! It was my fault she was "put" there, I wanted him all to myself....heavens, I did not expect this. To be continued....

4 comments:

SOUL: said...

jamie... i'm sorry you're having a rough time...and i am assuming..and could be wrong...that it has something to do with either your dad or Dorothy. or even just the digging up of these broken bones? i'm fixin-ta email you. hope you're online.
anyhow. i can't beleive the stories of your parents. we will have to compare notes when we get together. or maybe not. maybe we'll keep it to email. we won't have a lot of time together, perhaps we should make it fun as we can. we shall see. i'll talk to you soon!
hugs.

JYankee said...

Gosh it's very brave of u to be dregging all this up on your blog...but I hope it's in some way thereaputic for you as welll (can't spell)

Josie Two Shoes said...

Jamie, I understand very well the shock of being away from a parent for awhile, then coming home to find they have changed dramatically. I am sorry to hear that your father has cancer, I hate that disease. I am grateful that God has given you this opportunity to work some healing on the relationship between you. As for Dorothy... I'm following along here, will see how the story goes. It is tragic when someone is having those kinds of problems but isn't able to recognize it themselves, thus everyone becomes the enemy. You leave me wondering where this tale is going, and more importantly how you are handling it. You are VERY important to us here, and we care about you very much! Hope your Monday is bearable. So far so good here (but then it's only 8 AM, LOL)

Portia said...

i am catching up on posts i've missed - i'm offline for like 2 days and i feel like i've missed a week! anyway i am enjoying learning more about you and your history. it is so hard to have a love/hate relationship with anyone. i am so impressed, and glad to hear it for your sake, that you have been able to make peace with the whole situation, with God, and actually offer your father your support.
looking forward to the next chapter...
oh and we have a few things in common according to your list...and i really wish i could see you dance! i live vicariously on the dance floor cause i make an ass of myself if i try. so the only time i try is if i'm drunk and probably already making an ass of myself;)