Still Kickin’

Happy Monday!

What’s that? Yes, I’m still kickin’…and sometimes screaming. I’m trying to get back on track but this past couple of months have sucked and quite frankly, my desire to do anything has diminished.

We finally got propane, which is our primary source of heat. It took an entire month to get that no-good, mofo company out here to fill our tank! We went through that zero degree weather with 2 little space heaters in the living room, which didn’t even begin to keep us warm. I ended up buying a couple of electric shawls that were a Godsend, holy crap. They really helped – but now it’s warming up and I have packed them away for next winter.

We thought we were in the home stretch when our water pipes froze. We always take precautions and this time was no different but it was so much colder than it normally is that what we did wasn’t good enough. When it started to warm up and the pipes started to thaw, we realized we had busted pipes and we had to shut the water completely off. My son came and replaced pipes and repaired leaks and we thought we had it made but then for some reason we only had hot water in the bathtub and cold water in the toilet but no water anywhere else! My son checked and double-checked but could find nothing wrong! Nearly 2 weeks later, we finally found a plumber and $500+ later, we had water everywhere we were supposed to have water! The faucets were clogged; the kitchen faucet even had to be replaced. Boy, was it nice to be able to take a shower and wash dishes like “normal folk”.

I’ve been having health issues again. You may recall I was in the ER in December with swollen legs and numbness. I’ve been taking meds for that but last week I was in the doctor’s office with “leakage” in my legs. Technically, it’s lymphedema and I need a specific treatment which my insurance won’t pay for. That doesn’t surprise me at all, as it’s not the first time I’ve not been able to have the treatment/procedure/medication that I need to improve and protect my health. Anyway, the medical center has sent me forms to apply to a local charity that sometimes pays for things that folks can’t afford. I won’t get my hopes up because if I do, the rug will get pulled out from under me as it always does.

On the bright side, my daughter has given birth to a bouncing baby girl! My baby girl now has her own baby girl and that makes me so happy! On that note, I will leave you with a photo of Miss Angelina Rose!

angelina rose

Lost…and Still Not Found

I’m sick to my stomach… I don’t like this feeling at all. 

Dad and I went to town yesterday but we were both pretty stressed out. You see, Dad has a cash stash that he carries in a bank envelope, tucked into his checkbook when we leave the house. It’s not just a few bucks; not $20, $50, or even $100. It’s considerably more. He says he doesn’t want to leave it in the house in case of a fire or theft, so he takes it with him in that little envelope, tucked into his checkbook. The cash never leaves the car. We lock the car, always. He never takes the cash out; if he needs some cash for lottery tickets or something else he takes it out of the envelope and leaves the rest in the car. It’s not in plain sight. It’s hidden. If he takes his checkbook in the store, he leaves the cash in the car. Yesterday, before we went to town Dad discovered that the little bank envelope was missing. 

He has look everywhere it could be and everywhere he swears it couldn’t be. We looked again after we got home. We have looked with fresh eyes this morning. That cash is nowhere to be found. It was too much money to lose but seems it IS LOST, possibly forever. It could be like the bag of chocolate that disappeared. You might be wondering how much money it was… $1,500. Yes, ONE THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS. 

His memory is getting so bad that this morning he argued with me that it was after we got back from town when he discovered the cash was gone. I had to remind him of our conversation in the car on the way to town about the cash and where it could be. I had to remind him that I was getting ready to go when he was looking in the car, and then he came in to tell me about it. I reminded him that we were both worn out from hunting before we even left. He was still a bit puzzled, as if he didn’t recall any of that. 

It’s sickening that that amount of cash has been lost, but it’s even more sickening that this has happened to my Dad…or should I say IS happening? Just a few weeks ago, he was trying to think of my daughter’s name, his grand daughter, and he literally cried because he couldn’t think of her name until an hour later. It upset him so much that we purchased one of those “brain boosting” supplements. He’s been taking it for a month now and he keeps telling me, “It’s still not working.” I feel so terribly bad for him. 

I don’t know what I’m going to do. I have a hard time taking care of myself sometimes. I shouldn’t be disabled at my age. What will I do if I can’t take care of him? He’ll be 84 in February. He’s keeping a brave face right now, saying, “It’s only money.” That is true but it’s just an awful lot to lose especially during hard times.

Keep a close eye on your elder loved ones. Hug everyone you care about and tell them you love them. They may be here today but tomorrow isn’t a given. 💜 

aunt-debbie

A Glimpse Into The Past and Father’s Day

As you must know by now, my Dad is my best friend. He’s been the glue that keeps things moving smoothly, the comic relief, and the man who helped me raise my kids when their own father couldn’t be bothered to even write or call.

Dad and I haven’t always been close. That wasn’t his choice, nor mine. I know people get sick of the blame always being placed upon the mother, but in this case it was definitely my mother’s fault.

When I was a little girl, my mother pretty much had me scared to death of my Dad. She would comment things like, “Don’t let your Dad hear you say that,” or “Better clean up that mess before your Dad gets home.” She always ended those warnings with remarks about being spanked or sent to my room. I don’t recall my bedroom ever being messy. I remember Dad sometimes working overtime and not being home for dinner. In order to get me to finish everything on my plate, Mom would warn me of the consequences if I didn’t finish by the time Dad came home. Often she gave me portions that I’m positive were too big for my little tummy. I was a scared little girl.

When I was a little older, Mom kept me in line much the same way. She always made Dad out to be the bad guy. One time I was 5 minutes late from walking home from school and she told me how lucky I was that Dad wasn’t home! I remember running home from school many times after that to avoid the wrath of my father. Of course, Dad was never the authoritarian meany-head Mom made him out to be.

When I was around 12 or 13 years old, I wanted to start shaving my legs and Mom showed me how but told me, “Just don’t tell your Dad. He’ll be mad as hell.” And when I started wearing makeup, I sneaked it because I knew what she would say. I would buy a little makeup with my babysitting money and put it on when I got to the bus stop in the mornings, and took it off on the bus on the way home from school.

I could go on with more examples but you get the idea. There was a lot of manipulation going on.

Dad and I became closer as I entered adulthood. Somehow, Mom knew then that she couldn’t do what she had always done. She had lost her control. Once she left us (her family) behind and left the state, things began to change. I don’t know how anyone could be afraid of my Dad. I don’t know how I could have ever been so afraid of him. It just goes to show you how impressionable small children are. Dad was never anything but fun and funny – if you can visualize a 6-foot tall man riding a tricycle, then you’ll get a good idea of what I mean.

Dad is much older now, 83 and counting. He’s been a great Dad even when Mom made him out to be strict and mean. He’s been there for me when shit has hit the fan full force, and has been there for my kids as they were growing up. I don’t know what I would have done without him.

For Father’s Day this year, I collected funds from my children, my sisters, I threw in my share, and purchased a pole chain saw for Dad. I had extra funds so I also added a battery and charger for the pole saw. He won’t use a regular chain saw anymore. He’s wise enough to know that it would be dangerous for an 83 year old man who sometimes loses his balance to use one. A pole saw is a bit safer since a stumble would result in the saw part landing further away from him. He just needs to remove some tall bushy limbs off some shrubs and trees around the house. Nothing real major. I will keep an eye on him like I always do.

To end the day, my son, his wife and little boy came to visit. They brought wine. Dad loves wine. The Hudster (my grandson) warmed up to us quite nicely. He doesn’t see us often so prior to this visit, he was a bit leery of us. Dad and I both got hugs and The Hudster was playful and silly. I enjoyed the visit as much as Dad did. Dad loves playing with little kids, always has. I hope he has many years left to play!

Take care of your fathers, grandfathers, uncles, and all the father figures in your life. They have shaped the person you’ve become. You won’t have them forever. Treasure the stories and the memories. Happy Father’s Day, to all the great fathers out there and especially to my Dad – the BEST FRIEND and FATHER a daughter could ever have!

Dad, as a young man fresh out of high school. Age 18.
Dad and baby me… He was making me laugh way back then!
Dad, 2020, age 83.

Dad, Stop Pushing The Button!

The other night I was trying to watch “Prodigal Son” and because Dad constantly yawns loudly, coughs, gets the sneezies, or just talks through anything I want to watch, I turned on the soundbar so I could actually hear my show. He hates the soundbar because he says the sounds are all around and it’s weird. I told him that’s what ‘surround sound’ is and that’s what a soundbar does. It gives us the ‘theater’ experience. He scoffs at that, of course.

During one of the commercial breaks, I wanted Dad to hear some audio on my phone. He couldn’t hear it even though it was turned up. He grabbed the remote to mute the sound on the tv. I realized what he had done and why, so I grabbed the remote for the soundbar to mute that as well. As soon as I muted the sound bar, Dad pushed the button on his remote. The tv sound was back on. This went on, back and forth several times before I said, “Dad! Stop pushing the button!” He says, “I’m trying to mute the sound.” “I know. Mute it and then stop pushing the button. I’ll mute the soundbar.”

He keeps pushing the damn button on the remote. “Dad! Stop pushing the button!” He’s not understanding. He says, “I’m pushing the mute button but I can still hear it.” I say, “That’s because the soundbar is on!”

He’s still pushing the damn remote button. My show comes back on and I’ve given up on the audio I wanted him to hear.

“Turn the sound back on, Dad. My show is back on.” He looks at me with an extremely confused look on his face. The soundbar is on but the tv sound is still muted. I said, “Dad, unmute the sound on the tv. The soundbar is on but not the tv.” He just looks at the tv and the remote in his hand like he’s never seen it before. I get it. He’s 83 years old but it’s getting worse and worse by the day. I picked up my tv remote (we both have one) and I unmuted the tv.

Why didn’t I just use my tv remote instead of telling him to stop pushing the buttons? Because he would have still been pushing the buttons!

After my show was over, I turned off the soundbar. He asked, “Why did you turn the sound down?” I replied, “I didn’t, Dad. I turned off the soundbar.”

It’s no wonder I’m getting so many grays! It’s no wonder I haven’t pulled it all out! Gotta love him!