Monday, November 4, 2013

Dancing Has Been Temporarily Discontinued.....

I’m sitting in a bar at FLL…that’s travelspeak for Fort Lauderdale International Airport, with the Senior Son, Mr. and Mrs. Junior Son, and my baby cousin Perdie, having just left my mother at my father’s bedside at the hospital. Seems my father, so excited about the 70th wedding anniversary weekend, decided to get the party started when we arrived on Friday afternoon by falling and breaking his hip.

The ambulance came very quickly, and at the hospital it was just as quickly determined he had fractured his hip. That was by 4:00 p.m. Everyone stayed around for a while, but we convinced Mom to go home while I stayed with Dad. That was about 6. Meanwhile, the crack ER staff couldn’t find the “admitting” physician to get him to write admission orders. They tried again. And again. And again.. It was a veritable clown routine. My father was stone on whatever it was they were giving him, no one knew anything about his Parkinson’s disease, no one seemed to know we were even still in the ER triage room; I kept having to go in search of nurses for help. And by 9:30 I was ready to maul the next person who asked him “Is room 10 occupied?” Finally, someone found the admitting doc, got the orders, and moved Dad up to a room around 10pm. Thankfully, upstairs was a different story and I was finally able to leave him in good hands around 11:00.

My brother and sister-in-law went straight to the hospital when they arrived Saturday morning, while the rest of us were still in shul. Having all of us in one place at one time is a rarity, but this time, it was positively karmic. Mom spent most of the day not knowing whether to smile with the sheer joy of having us with her, or to cry because Dad thought he was still at the clubhouse. 

Saturday night, we decided to all go out to dinner as planned. We needed the break. But when we got to Mom’s after dinner, there was a long, rambling message on the phone reminding Mom to tell the driver not to pick him up at the clubhouse in the morning. That and he needed chocolate. I was staying over at my Tante’s house, so Tante took a bag of “Bliss Chocolates” with us and went to the hospital…where Dad said he didn’t understand why he was still at the clubhouse and no one had come to pick him up even though he told Helen [Mom] that he needed to be picked up. The nurses assured us these were the drugs talking.

Sunday morning, we went ahead with the 70th Anniversary brunch, even though the groom was not present. So many people had come in for the occasion, that Mom just wanted to see everyone…and we did and as surreal as it all was, the brunch was just fine. The only other person who was at the wedding and was supposed to be at the brunch was not present either. My tante insisted that she stay with her favorite big brother… who was still asking to be picked up at the clubhouse.

Home Again…thank G-d.

Though I don’t usually do this, there are some shout-outs that need to happen here. My brother's implacable calmness coupled with his professional understanding of the rehab industry was hugely comforting; he knew the questions to ask and perhaps more importantly how to translate the answers for mom since he's the one she actually listens to. The Senior Son gets special kudos for his incredible patience and gentle guiding of his Bubbe this past weekend. He was the one who got the guestroom at their place, while the couples were at the Colony and I was bunking in with my aunt (giving two widows a chance to compare notes.) I could not do what he did; his kindness was much appreciated not just by his Bubbe, but by me as well. Mr. and Mrs. Junior Son, who have been doing Grandpa duty here in Minnesota, also stepped into the fray with smart phones…looking stuff up as we needed instant information, and additional support for their grandparents. And there aren’t enough “thanks yous” in the world to be said to our friend…and the son of our folks’ dear friends,  Art, who has volunteered to be Bubbe’s “wheels” for the next month.

And one more giant “thank you” to Handy, who babysat the dog here in Minnesnowta, and visited Grandpa every day while we were in Flah-rida.

The good news is that Dad was making much more sense by last night and cogent enough to be yanking Mom’s chain. I think he’s gonna be just fine.

Next week, it will be back to business as usual.

Wifely Person’s Tip o’the Day
If the doctor tells you to use the frickin’ walker,
use the frickin’ walker.


  1. Was one of the drugs they gave him THC? It sure sounds like it, from your description of the munchies. Glad to hear your dad is as OK as one can be with a fractured hip...and kudos to you for doing such a good job raising Senior Son and Junior Son.

  2. Aye carumba ...not what ya'll were planning on, eh?
    Best wishes for a speedy recovery to your father and kudos to the wonderful kiddos!

  3. Yes, sir, your kids are to be commended for their behavior and comportment during this extra-special time. May the healing be quick and clean.

  4. Your writing style is pure pleasure for a reader!

    1. I don't know who you are, but thank you!