Still mired in chaos.
I’m still at home and Heather is still away. Although I did get to see her for an entire day recently.
After 2+ weeks of being up north with my grandmother, our 4-year old daughter had reached her threshold. She had to get home. She missed her daddy. It was then when we hatched the brilliant plan to have Heather drive the 4 1/2 hours home to return Kamryn and then retreat back to the Adirondack Mountains untethered.
The problem with this plan is that I was left to handle a full workload, three kids, pets, household needs, shopping, cooking, laundry, and more all on my own. It was impossible, and after 4+ days of being alone with these children, my wife’s 41-year old husband had reached his threshold. So, back Heather came to rescue me and water her plants. She picked up the kids and drove back the next morning so I could work without constant interruptions.
We’re now in our 4th week of Heather being up north with my grandmother, and in the time she’s been gone, the house has turned to shizzle. I try, I really do, but despite my best efforts, this home has become a disaster. Not only that, but my scruff has evolved into a bona fide beard and my eating habits have been known to kill lesser men.
To be honest, I’m like a homeless guy, yet I have a home. It’s weird. And Heather’s imminent return? I can’t wait. But at the same time, it scares the hell out of me because if I were single, my appearance alone would qualify me for squatter’s rights. I’m like the Unabomber but without the same clean, wholesome look, and Heather’s going to lose her mind.
But, as we both need to remind ourselves, it’s for Grams. It’s for family. And soon, our household will be intact again.
I just have to escort my grandmother from New York to Texas first.
This Friday I was scheduled to be whisked away by Hyundai to beautiful Park City, Utah on an all-expense paid trip to introduce the all-new 2013 Santa Fe. Airfare, hotel, food…all covered in exchange for a test drive.
Instead, I’ll be boxed in a Texas-bound airplane with my chatty 92-year old grandmother to my right and a potentially useful exit hatch to my left.
I’ve mentioned before that my grandmother suffered a heart attack and a bunch of minor strokes several weeks ago. Ever the strong-willed independent woman, she’s refusing to acknowledge the reality that she can no longer care for herself all by herself. While it’s obvious that she needs assistance, you’ll never hear her admit it.
Whether it be a trip to the bathroom or the spooning of hospital-grade Jell-o, it needs to be her own doing. Thank goodness for hospital regulations, because without them? She would have shimmied herself onto the gurney, wheeled her own arse into the back of the ambulance, and then driven both herself and the EMT’s to the ER while admonishing them for not letting her conduct her own EKG.
After a lot of thought and discussion, we all decided that it’d be for the best if my grandmother lived with family and not with a bunch of strangers in a nursing home. Following a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors and a few rounds of Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe, the destination was determined…my parent’s home in Dallas, Texas.
She’ll have her own bedroom, her own bathroom, free reign of the house, and even have access to the pool with the understanding that she’s under strict orders to not even consider a skinny dip. Not only is it a vision no one needs but it’s really hard to throw away an inground pool.
Our biggest obstacle with the transition from New York to Texas wasn’t how to get her possessions down there. It was how to get HER down there. It’s going to be a precarious ordeal considering her bladder will provide roughly a 12-minute window of opportunity for flight. Seeing how airline bathrooms are built for waifs capable of squatting on something the size of a coffee mug, I’m dreading the calls of nature. Quite honestly, it might be better for all involved if we just hopscotch our way from airport to airport for potty breaks as we jet our way south.
When the decision was made to transport her to Texas, I was asked if I’d be willing to accompany her. I must make one hell of a traveling companion because even though my mom is already scheduled to join her on the flight, she was emphatic that I tag along.
Always a “family first” kind of guy, it was a no-brainer to cancel Utah and make sure my grandmother enjoyed as stress-free a trip as possible. She’s always been there for me and she’s had such an incredible impact on my life that I never, not even for a second, considered choosing a vacation over her needs.
This doesn’t mean I think the trip will be fun. I just know it’ll be funny. Especially when she fills the cabin with one of her random storytelling filibusters.
My grandmother has acquired a reputation of being overly verbose. But in her defense, it’s only if she’s awake. When she’s asleep, the chatter is almost cut in half.
I’ll admit, many of her stories are entertaining and interesting. It just takes so darn long to finish them because of how many tangents and splintered topics she weaves into the mix. She’s the only person I know who’s capable of telling three different stories at once to completion. The conversation will start out about coffee but end with some final thoughts on crocodiles and bean curd. And somehow, the story makes perfect sense.
She’s fascinating to listen to but there’s just…so…much…of it. Still, I’d rather listen to her talk to her heart’s content because I know I’ll miss it terribly when the stories stop.
I have no doubt that this trip will prove to be a treasure trove of blog fodder and I plan on exploiting every minute of it for your reading enjoyment.
Oh, and stay tuned, because this weekend I’ll be announcing the KICKEST ASSIEST BESTEST CONTEST EVER. Believe me, you’ll never guess what you can win. It’s completely absurd. Yet, just like my grandmother’s stories, it’ll make total and perfect sense when you hear it. Seriously…you HAVE to participate. It’s going to be an absolute blast.