Monday, May 05, 2008


Wednesday. Eye glass day. What a shock to be greeted at the door by Ma. The right side of her face was blue/black from forehead to below her eye.

“What happened?”

“I fell.”

My stomach began churning. The migraine aura didn’t flicker as I had taken some aspirin before I left home.

“Where did you hit your head?”

“On the floor. In the kitchen. My leg just went out from under me, and then I crawled to pick myself up.”

The guilty flutter of fairy wings buzzed in my ears. Ma must fall a couple of times a month at least that I’m made aware. There might be more incidents, but they aren’t telling me.

These are the times when you know you should speak up and talk about things like having home help care come in on a daily basis, or possibly permanent residency in a nursing home. I know this topic will go over with as much enthusiasm as a fart in church.

And what about Dad? He’s forgetful. Is it just normal forgetfulness or a precursor of something else? They don’t give me my email. They don’t give it to him because he can’t remember how to turn the computer on. What about walking to Mahket Basket? Is that part of a wandering cycle? Will he forget where he is, how he got there, and how to get home?

I push the topic to the back burner. Maybe it’s not a good time to broach the subject about nursing home care. Maybe another time would be better. Maybe they will both realize they need constant care. Yeah, and I’m a dancing bear.

We took the ride to Target. Patrick in Optical greeted us warmly, and was very concerned and sympathetic to Ma’s eye. He clucked his tongue at her misfortune and was very attentive to Ma. She blossomed a bit. He made sure her glasses were neither too tight nor too loose. Gave her a card to read. Explained the graduated bifocal lens took time getting used to and was different than her bifocals with the line. He showed her how to move her head instead of her eyes to read. Ma read the smallest print on the card. I had to squint.

As I was helping Ma up, Patrick mouthed I was a saint. I almost bent over so he could see the sunshine.

She worried how she was going to pay for the glasses. I told her they were already paid for. At first she insisted I hadn’t paid for them, but then she remembered. She promised she would have the money for the glasses and the furnace, but I had to wait until June. Like Wimpy, I’ll have a hamburger today, and will gladly pay you next Tuesday. No worries, Ma. Guess with the bad economy Auntie Rose is having a hard time sending the millions which used to come in two weeks. Now, we’d have to wait a month. No worries.

Back home, it took Ma a month of Sundays to get out of the car and to the front steps. Dad was making grrr faces and mumbling like Popeye. Hurry up, move!

“I’m sorry I’m so slow,” she whispered almost tearfully.

“Don’t worry about it. Take your time.”

“I don’t want you to get angry with me.”

“Have I said the eff word?”


“Then I’m not angry. When you hear me yell, and I say the eff word, then you’ll know I’m angry. Ok?”

She gave me a little smile.

The falls and the outing to Target had taken quite a bit out of her. Snails moved faster. I know what will happen. She will take another fall that will seriously injure her or be fatal. Maybe that would be a blessing. The decision to put her in a nursing home would be taken out of our [The Brother and my] hands. I push the thought away. Fiddledee-dee. I’ll think about that tomorrow.

We have tea. A chance to take a load off and pleasant chit chat. I told her about the Young One’s ring ceremony. She asked me to stay for lunch, but I declined. Threw Himself under the bus, and told Ma, I had some work I had to do for him. I don’t know if she noticed my nose growing.

As I was leaving, she pointed to her bruised eye.

“Your father did this to me,” she joked.

If Daddy did that to you, you’d have two black eyes, I thought to myself. My stomach churned. Because it could very well happen if she sings the You’re Stupid song one too many times. Tomorrow is another day.


Erica Vetsch said...

there's a lot of throwing folks under the bus going on :)

Nutterone said...

Argh... tough spot. And ma being vulnerable doesn't help at all. Good thing you have strong shoulders!