Friday, October 03, 2008


Life in Lufkin has gotten pretty hectic. The late summer /fall season means football and hunting. When you throw in a hurricane, things can get crazy. I am not immune. I love to watch the Panthers and the 'Horns play, and usually both rip and snort,(Panthers are coughing and wheezing this year.) I do not hunt much, but I lease out tracks of my families property to hunters, so I am try to keep watch at what is going on so the property won't be destroyed. Ike did come, it blew down limbs and trees, disrupted power and cancelled football games. I also had a stump grinder so I used that to try to make extra cash. You do these things when you have children in college.
My life has been busy! Funny thing happened yesterday. (Not ha-ha funny, more of an ironic funny.) My father is getting very feeble. He has lived a good and long life, but the years are really catching up with him. On Wednesday he slipped and fell in his bathroom, so my mom called me to help get him up. This is not the first time this has happened. Usually I go over, help him get his feet back under him and lift him up. No big deal. I understand he is getting weaker, but he bounces back. Wednesday I did the drill, lifted him back on his feet and helped him to bed to recover. No big deal.
I called to check on him yesterday and my mom told me he had not gotten out of bed all day and she was not sure on what to do. Wednesdays are big days for my parents. They have two Kiwanis meetings and they go out for dinner with a group of friends they have known forever,( they are known as the "wags" for Wednesday Afternoon Group.") For Dad not to have gotten out of bed meant he was not doing well.
Most people would go to the doctor. I knew that was not an option for my father. He does not see the reason to go for medical help unless you can give specific symptoms, (my finger is chopped off, my leg is broken and protruding through the skin, I have a bad stomach ache and have been running a fever of over 102, etc.) I feared the worst.
The strange part was that finally I was going to have a day to catch up on the details of life. I did not have a lot of sales calls nor did I have a stump grinding job. Finally, I could pick up laundry, call on friends, go shopping for food, maybe even take a nap! I drove to my parents to check out the situation personally. When I arrived my mother was leaving to get her hair done. Husband may be sick, but it's Thursday morning a the beauty shop won't wait. I talked to her in the driveway and told her I would go in and check on the old man.
I was going to check on him and leave, I had things to do and people to see. Sure enough, he has laid up in bed, and not moving much. I couldn't really peek and run, so I asked him how he was doing. His answer was short and sweet. I started to head out then, he was alive. I realized I should do more. I started to talk to him about his cows, (a hot button for him.) He began to talk more. We moved into politics, (he is a yellow dog democrat like me,) and the talked about football. Bingo! Before I knew it my mother was calling to see if I was still there and if I wanted lunch. Sure, I had already wasted half my morning, I might as well dine.
I asked Dad if he wanted to come and join us for lunch, and much to my surprise he did. He trudged on a walker to the table and ate, at least he was up. Mom had to go back into town to do volunteer work at church. I stayed with Dad. It wasn't hard. After lunch he got up, (with my help,) and trudged back to bed with his walker. Then he napped.
While he napped I phoned several people to follow up with business and re-set my parents computer. They had been powerless for a week after Ike and did not properly shut down, so they had to do a full re-start, complete with six discs of data. It took a while, but was easy to do. When I finished I had to pick up the twins from school. I took them to my parents and found Dad had awaken. I knew he was addicted to free cell, and because their computer was down he could not play. I asked if wanted to get up and play on the computer, he said yes. He spent the rest of the afternoon visiting with his grandsons and playing puzzles.
I had wasted a full day- or had I ? I did not do many of the things I had planned, but the major tasks were completed, (I even went shopping on our way back home.) My father is slipping fast. I know he will not be around much longer. This is probably his last year to worry about having enough hay. This is his last football season and election. It has been uncomfortable for me to face this. Yesterday I spent quality time with my father, and those opportunities are slipping by. He started to recover from his fall. I arrived at his house to find a body barley breathing. I left him playing games and drinking diet coke. That was a great day! It is all a matter of perspective.

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