Sunday, May 24, 2009

Dad despite himself

Today I picked my parents up after yoga, intending to take them out to eat Mongolian BBQ in Mission Viejo. When we got down to Marguerite Ave., where we had to turn right, he insisted that I should turn left, and continued insisting it.
You should know that my dad has always had a fabulous sense of direction. He memorizes locations, and can tell the bus driver how to get to his destination, if it's a new bus driver. In fact, he has done that before, though now that he's old, the bus drivers won't listen to him, and have insisted on letting elderly and handicapped people off in the wrong places, helpless. That scares me, of course, but I have always felt safe trusting that my dad wouldn't get off if he were in the wrong place, and insisted in fact that the bus driver take them straight home. Afterwards, he called up the bus company and told them off for endangering the riders, many of whom are mentally incapacitated.
But today, he was really confused, and he stayed confused. We found out that the bbq was closed, perhaps closed every Sunday or maybe permanently closed. I didn't get out of the car to look, and instead went down to Moulton and took them to the kosher deli. Then again he insisted that the deli was only a couple of miles away. It wasn't, which I knew. It was maybe 10 miles away... perhaps a little less. And again he was really upset because his mind was betraying him, and I began to worry just a little too.
Meanwhile, my stomach went haywire, and I had to flee into the deli's bathroom immediately upon getting there, without helping them out of the car. My dad forgot to put the brakes on his walker, and it rolled away, while I was in the bathroom being rather ill. Someone ran out of the deli and retrieved the walker from him, otherwise,, he might have fallen and injured himself. Then we went to Steinmart. He said he would stay at the front on the bench they have there. But it was already full of unwilling males. So I guess he went to the bathroom. I went into the men's room and called for him, but no one answered, so I was dragging my mom around searching for him, calling, and asking all the clerks in the store if they had seen him. None had.
Finally, one of the guys who works in the store went into the bathroom and found him coming out.
What a day.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Damn, Robbi I am so sorry you do not have anyone to share the responsibilties of your parents with. This makes me think that, my son being a only child will be responsible for me. I better be extra nice when I get older, lol.

Beth

Lou said...

You never cease to amaze me, Robbi, with your willingness to keep giving these two outings. You are so good to them.

Robbi said...

Thanks Lou, Beth. My dad is bored and frustrated, complaining to his brother, who tells me. I try to help out in any way I can, though I can't take them many places now, as you can see. He would like to be more independent. If it weren't for my mom, he could live in a different sort of place, I guess. It is hard to be pushed around by everyone and have to ask permission to sweep the patio. That's what he has to do. But I don't feel guilty for putting him there. He needs someone to dress and wash him, to care for him. It isn't going to be me. I don't go that far. So he has to live in a place rather like this.
You're right Beth--those of us with one child better watch out!