Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Here I go to Florida.

So my Dad's in need of a nursing home.

He wanted to go into the VA down in Florida, and that would require him having a roommate, which he will fucking hate. He called me at 6:30 in the morning today acting all weird, telling me he put his house on the market, that he's sending me money all this shit. All of a sudden 6 months out from the home turned into "2-4 weeks". What the hell?

So I called his cousin today, who is around the same age, but in good health, and said, "I think Dad's having some issues, mentally and otherwise." He agreed and told me that he was trying to talk dad out of the VA but that my dad wants to go there so that he can leave me money! I'm like, whhhaaaat? I don't care about that, I don't want a fucking dime, I just want my dad's last few years to be good... so then I started bawling, at the thought that my dad would put himself someplace he hated because he thought it would help ME.

His cousin said I need to get out there asap, because a. he's worried my dad is going to kill himself, and b. if he doesn't kill himself he's going to end up in the shitty VA even though he (cousin) and I BOTH are wanting him to get in a private facility, and that c. it isn't my imagination, the Parkinson's related dementia has started, in his opinion also. He's been getting weird phone calls too.

He said when I fly out, he will pick me up, and he and I will both go talk him into it, and bring him home with me. So I call my dad back, and tell him, "Look, don't be mad at me, I'm not trying to meddle or anything, but I talked to Clark (cousin) and we both think you should be up here with me, and that you should be in a place where you can have your own room." He hems and haws, talks about how much money it will cost, blah blah, and I'm like, dad, even at $50K a year in care that gives you five years worth of assets you have - and you told me yourself you don't have 5 years."

He hems and haws some more and is like, well some of its tied up, blah blah, I'm like you don't need it all right NOW. I point out to him that he and I are too independent to have roommates, how he hated it when he had one when he had his last hip done, how he and I need our alone time - its just who we are. And he agreed... If there's one thing my dad and I are it's alike...

Then I tell him, look, worst case scenario, the money does run out. You still get your $2K injured soldiers money a month, you've got an annuity maturing for $50K in 5 years (another year of care) and at that point then we could put you in the VA, you won't end up on the street. They don't put people on the street due to lack of funds...

What I didn't tell him, but thought, is by then his mind will be gone, and the shell of his body can be cared for and he wouldn't require the privacy and independence a private facility would provide him... and I can still be there, to talk to him, to hold his hand, to at least be there, whether he was aware of it or not.

I think I made some headway. I made him promise not to do anything drastic for a couple of days, to let me see what I can find here as far as homes, would he consider it? And I got him to agree to it... I tell you, I am a very spiritual person, and I do pray... but tonight it was so on a higher level. I've been a practicing Buddhist for like 6 years, and I came home, collapsed in a heap on the couch, sobbing, just praying to God or whoever to help me get my daddy out here, and help his last few years be okay.

They say people turn to religion in desperation - I guess I'm there. I'm a mess. I don't think I've cried this much since I left my ex. But I've mobilized, Left posts on Parkinson's boards about advice, left messages on local Parkinson's research networks, have some numbers to call. I will do this if it kills me. He deserves it. I just feel like shit he wants to go rot somewhere for MY benefit. Having him here would be the biggest gift... I love him so much I can't even explain.

Everyone loves their parents, but my dad is ME. I mean, we look alike, aside from the obvious gender differences our bodies are the same, our minds are the same... he's where I came from 100%...he's always had my back...ALWAYS. Never judged me. No matter how much I fucked up, how many times I got sidetracked, he never let me forget the lesson...

Why am I writing about him like he's already gone??

This just reinforces why I should never ever have kids, who wants to put people through this shit? I've fucking iced my ankle all night, half my calf is bruised now, its most definitely sprained, and I have to hit the courthouse tomorrow. I DON'T feel sorry for myself, I just wonder when the time will come when I'm not dealing with a crisis? Don't get me wrong, I'm very thankful for what I have, I'm very lucky on a number of very important levels... I just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other and trust that it will all be okay. Fuck. I need vicodin and sleep. Right now.

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