So a few nights ago I went to bed really tired and woke up feeling like an accessory to murder, or at least a potential murder, a murder which has yet to happen, one whose victim hasn’t been chosen yet, you lucky, lucky victim, you mangled cadaver you. This is how I felt the day after I visited my folk’s house and my Dad wrote me a cheque for the small fortune I spent on my son’s birthday football strip which they love to get my son every birthday; in August theres a new strip and so in August there is always a blue rinse crunch for the latest away kits.
I sat at the kitchen table, which is in the breakfast room (the room for breakfast) the kitchen is where other things happen, such as the swallowing of pills, the checking of notes as to what could be ascertained from previous half heard telephone conversations so as not to appear too detatched; lots of guess work is applied, as you could imagine.
Anyway on this occasion Mum went upstairs to fetch the cheque book, usually the normal sized cheque book, but on this occasion she bought down the slightly larger cheque book, the one foe more important folk, the “fuck you” cheque book, the “check me out” cheque book. The cheque book which Mum said after sitting down and realising which cheque book she’d bought down, said to my Dad, quietly, but loudly because my Mum is pretty deaf and has no idea of the intensity of sound, “Do you want to come and practice?” The signature, that’s what she meant. “Can you still write” would be another way of putting it.
So rather than take a public tumble and admit that she can’t hear and Dad can’t speak and so together they are capable of gathering at least 35-40% of information from the doctors meaning that what I hear about my Dad having problems with his “waterworks” is only the fantastical or rather bland understanding from my ostrich minded folks. Plus the fact that my mother mentioned my Dad’s Penis by its real name but out loud; his Penis, no ones parents have any sort of reproductive organs; fact, we were all egg borne.
Anyway Dad comes out of the kitchen, and having practiced has performed a pretty good signature, spidery, which is what happens, but good. He looked at me and my daughter, dribbled, which he does constantly anyway, and said
“I’m sorry, I can’t feel my arms, legs, feet, hands (or anything else limb wise) and so writing is a real problem” I paraphrase, Dad has a problem with his speech which makes him slower and less precise. So I asked
“Are you still Driving?”
To which he replied…
“Ah now driving is ok”
Dribbling, stuttering, and covering up the sheepishness he was feeling when he returned from the signing of the cheque.
I’ve had the conversation before regarding how he could crash into someone else and hurt someone else if he is reactions weren’t too sharp. The problem now is that its not just a measly problem with his weak hand..Its a massive situation that Dad is now driving without any sense of feeling in his limbs; arms and legs, which is astonishing but probably not unheard of.
So I am left with an issue sitting at home in my own home, miles away from the battering ram of my Dad’s car with the realisation that he could probably kill someone the next time he takes the car outside, which probably makes me an accomplice, maybe. Or I could deny all knowledge, and see if we can argue the case after the event, because there will be one, there always is.
Should the worst come to the worst I would suggest you delete this post and deny any knowledge of any problems regarding your father’s health, never forget the last things a man wants to give up in life are sex and driving, hopefully muscle memory will get him out of trouble as long as his eyesight hold out and if he’s lucky and the pedestrian is young they may manage to fling themselves into the hedgerow and out of harms way.
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This is very perceptive of you, sex and driving! If I delete the post it’ll still be rattling round my head anyway, a problem shared etc. The good thing is I’m miles away and so literally have no idea what they’re up to and so in a way no news is good news. But I worry, which I think I’m meant to… right?
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I’m sure there will come a point where your father will give up, as a driver myself with over 50 years experience I know that years of experience will see you through where an inexperienced person might be in trouble.
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It is a difficult time when parents age and not all that well either. Good luck Martin. Thanks for joining in 🙂 🙂