August 3, 2022

finding frustration, followed by feeling foiled, frequently, I've got 'F' words to say, I guess

I snapped this while at my folks' house
recently thinking you all might enjoy it.
 Behind every great photo display unit from
 the 90s is a device used to chill food.
 At least hers is not in her dining room. 

(backing up the bus a little, because this was already prepared. In case you missed the news in my comments from Monday:  Reg had a grand mall seizure early Monday morning while I was trying to drive him to the ER. It was a long day as the docs decided what to do. More updates as they become available)


Tuesday  (last week) - the day after Mom went in the hospital was a day filled with frustration.

I really felt sort of lost all day. I had a plan when I went to bed, when we thought Mom would be sent home in the morning. When Marie decided to come in town, I questioned my plan for the day and I ended up rearranging it. 

What on earth? 

I will be the first to admit that I didn't want to be flexible and allow Marie to dictate what time I went to the hospital. I chose to be a pain when she asked me to switch when I was going to go. I said NO. 

I had things to do. Coach was trying to convince me to consider that she was coming from another state, but from my perspective she didn't need to come. From my experience, Marie believes that she is the most important, if not the only, child my parents have. This has played out numerous times. Like when she thanks me for getting OUR parents groceries in bad weather. I'm not doing this to help her. 

This is what I saw in my family room early
 one morning the other day. Is it me? Did
you see a man's face? Ed was standing there
 and mid-sentence I was like OH, OH LOOK. 


In times like this everyone wants to feel helpful. When Dad was thrown from a horse in Yellowstone in '16 (not sure I shared that here before, but Dad almost died. Brain bleed, broken hip, 6 broken ribs), Marie tried to convince all of us to hire a private jet to fly him home or rent a medical RV to drive him home. 


Later Coach and I recognized the issue. Ann flew out with Mom after the accident, so she was there. Pat was the one travelling with him, so he was there. Mike agreed to fly out when Dad was ready to come home and help in that way. I never offered to fly out there, because I was needed at home and there was nothing I could do there. 

Translation:  I know things.


Marie wanted so desperately to fly out, because she hated the thought of sacrificing her cherished #1 kid spot, and perhaps she hated to be linked with someone like me - the only kid who wasn't going to make an appearance at a hospital in Wyoming. She was constantly offering to fly out and both Mom and Dad insisted that she not come. No need.

When Dad did come home, Mike flew out to help get him on and off the plane. He had to fend off well-intentioned people who kept offering to lift him by pulling him up from under his arms. Nope - Dad had 6 broken ribs. That was not gonna work. 

Anyway, Marie let all of us know that she was going to drive from Milwaukee to O'Hare to watch Dad get on the ambulance that would take him to the rehab hospital. She took photos and texted them to us. The tech on the ambulance in one of the photos looked super annoyed. 

She got lost on the way to the rehab hospital after leaving O'Hare and was the last to arrive. I was the first one there. (I rarely utter that phrase). When Marie arrived, she handed Mom a notebook. "This is all of the research that I did. All the different private jet and RV companies I talked to when I was trying to find another way to bring him home." 

I was dumbfounded. What on earth? That had been voted down weeks before he came home, but it seemed Marie wanted points for all of her effort. I know, I know, we all handle trauma differently. I just felt it was an odd time to brown nose. 



Initially Dad planned to go see Mom at the hospital after her mini-stroke, and then only one additional visitor could be there. I didn't want to get there and not be allowed in, because Marie was there. I decided to get there before her and then leave when she arrived. Mike convinced Dad to stay home anyway. 

Frustration followed my every move that day. 

At 10 am I left the house with both girls on my way to the hospital. I dropped Mini off at Coach's work to 'steal' his car - a practice we do almost daily. Later someone is tasked to go get him. It's 7 minutes away and across a major road from the club where the kids caddy, so it works. 

Mini was supposed to meet me at the golf club when I dropped Curly off around 11:30. Mini wasn't caddying. She'd registered for classes at ND that morning and she and I planned to go purchase her laptop for college. 

Curly and I saw Nana at the hospital. Shortly after Marie arrived, we left. We went to the bank to get Curly an account. She has a college account somewhere else, but I dislike intermingling her caddy and sitting cash with our money and then trying to remember to send it to the college account. Time to get her set up with a debit card, etc. 

I'd tried to do that last week, but I didn't have enough/correct paperwork. Her passport expired. She can't find her 8th grade student ID. I didn't have her birth certificate with me, thinking her social security card and recently expired passport was sufficient. They wouldn't let me do it. I wondered if her birth certificate was in the vault, but I didn't have the key with me to our safety deposit box.

After that initial fail, I went home and looked through my stack of birth certificates on my desk. It wasn't there. I had the presence of mind to grab the key to the safety deposit box on my way to the hospital. 

After the hospital, we went to the bank. There was no birth certificate in the vault. Foiled. 

I'd worked the whole morning around dropping Curly off to caddy. She heard from a fellow caddy that there was some event going on and they weren't using caddies, or something. Foiled. 

I called Mini who was supposed to meet me to do the computer thing. 

Mini:  So, I'm over at my friend B's house. N is over here letting out B's dogs while they are out of town. One of the dog's bumped into a door and locked N inside a room, so I had to come over. She handed me the key through the window and I had to let her out. 

Me:  Well get home because I want to leave to go get your computer.

Mini:  Sure. I don't want to stay here anyway. The dogs pooped inside the house. Then one of them slid in the poop and there is like poop everywhere. It is rank in here. (insert N dying laughing in the background). 

And there it is, Mini finding a way to blow my mind as I'm trying to figure out a plan and then re-configuring said plan.


Have you ever heard of a dog locking a dog sitter in a room? Come on. Who thinks Mini just wanted to go visit the dogs with her friend? Any major brown noses in your family? Am I the only one who uses a safety deposit box any more? 


Pat Birnie said...

Your life makes my head spin! So frustrating when all the plans you have to be productive are “foiled”. It’s crazy how hard it is to set up a bank account. I have never in my life had a safety deposit box. All birth certificates, passports etc are in a file at home. Not locked- a little careless maybe but it’s never been an issue. And finally, good for you for standing up to Marie. She sounds like she is fairly insecure and needs to keep establishing her place in the your cost.

Kara said...

The only thing harder than opening a new bank account (so it seems), is getting your child a nose or belly button piercing when they are under 18. There is so much paperwork required.

I don't think there are any brown nosers in my immediate family. I can believe the dog story, because I too have teenagers, and I have seen ridiculous things happen.

Good vibes to Reg. Healing thoughts to you all.

Colleen said...

Oh Ernie, I can't believe what happened to Reg! I am so sorry and hope you get some answers quickly!! My niece went through the whole seizure thing and now is on medicine to control them. So scary.

Ernie said...

Pat - It has been a crazy few weeks. Funny how we follow our parents' example. My dad always had a safety deposit box to store important documents. For awhile I kept passports there, too, but it complicates things when you want to grab a birth certificate.

The fact that Marie is so insecure is mind blowing - but I agree with your thought there. She has morphed into an 80 year old in order to align more fully with our mother. What else can she do in order to keep her 'place.' She exhausts me.

When I was in the ER all day with Reg and had an appointment the next day with him, I couldn't take my folks to PT. Marie said she would do it, and Coach assured me that if she showed up to his office he would bar her from the patient area. I'm not alone in my summation of her. I think my dad ended up insisting that he could just drive her anyway.

Ernie said...

Kara - I've never gotten the girls any piercings. Mini is not interested - even in ear piercing, thus my Mini. I couldn't handle it on my own ears. Curly has never expressed an interest, but she'd be the one that might like to do that. Funny that it really hasn't come up.

I believe Mini would rather come to the rescue of a friend locked in a room by a dog in an empty house than do anything she 'should' be doing at home. I couldn't believe she still hadn't even showered when I got home a few hours later. Good grief.

Ernie said...

Colleen - It was nothing short of terrifying. When he is in the passenger seat now, I can't help but seeing the whole thing play out again. It was unbelievable. The pediatric neurologist has him on antileisure meds. He was very encouraging saying that some people never have another seizure and it is easier to manage than diabetes. He can never swim alone. He cannot drive for 6 months and that is going to be very hard as the college kids are all leaving. Safety first.

mbmom11 said...

I was warned away from safety deposit boxes by my sister (a lawyer) who noted that when you need those documents out, you might not be able to get them because your proof of identity is inside (and never put the only copy of your will in one either!). I don't have any fancy jewelry or bearer bonds that need that level of security anyway.
We have a firesafe box in my closet for most things, but I have a purple folder with SS cards and birth certificates - ready to grab in case of emergency.
I hope Reg's treatment works - prayers!

Ernie said...

mbmom- I am thinking that we probably don't need that box anymore. I do prefer to have all the documents in the house anyway. I recently put all the social security cards and birth certificates together in a big clip in my desk. I like the unique colored folder idea, so it stands out.

Hoping the medication is the answer. He slept late for the first time maybe ever. Restless sleep has been an issue for him for years. When he gets tired he just goes to bed, even we are in the middle of a movie. He gets to join the ranks of sleep-late teens and I lose my dishwasher unloader. Thanks for the prayers.

Nance said...

I used to think I needed a safe deposit box at the bank (I worked at the bank for years and years to put myself through college), but I soon realized it would be more of an inconvenience than anything else. Like mbmom11, we have a firesafe lockbox for all our valuables/dox. Highly recommend.

It's terrifying when our own child has an illness or condition that we can't just give an OTC med or band-aid for. I don't know about you, but Patience is not my virtue, and the waiting would be making me frantic and sick. (Although then my tendency is to over-Google and research and scare myself. Not good.)

Nicole MacPherson said...

Argh! How incredibly frustrating!!

Busy Bee Suz said...

I believe that is Walter Cronkite peeking into your home. Maybe he's working on a news story from the Ever After?

Zero brown nosers in my family. My BIL has had his moments, but my MIL can see through him.

We used to have a safe deposit box, but then the Coach purchased the biggest safe known to (Residenta)l man, and I keep all our stuff in there now.

Cracking up at all the brown-nosing from Wyoming to now. WTH? I can see why you're different. I hope the foiling is now complete!!

Jenny in WV said...

I can't imagine how scary it is to see a person have a seizure! I hope everything gets figured out soon!

Ernie said...

Nicole- it was certainly one of 'those' days. I felt out of place all day, questioning where I should go and what I should do. Due to mom being in the hospital. I was a mess.

Ernie said...

Suz- Ed and I were the only ones awake. He and I thought it looked like one of the old man puppet from the Muppets. How great would that be to have a puppet to heckle us?

The brown-nosing is strange. I've got a few more ordeals to share. She likes to remind everyone that SHE has our folks' health in her best interest. Exhausting.

Maybe I should look into a safe . . . then I could hide food from the kids so that it lasts a little longer.

Ernie said...

Nance- I'm out of order here. Sorry. Responding from the car while Coach drives . . . headed to Wisconsin for the weekend with his family.

The safe deposit box is making me feel very dated. A simple fireproof safe seems so much more sensible and convenient. I like convenient.

I keep going back to the doc saying in May that he suspected this was just a small seizure disorder but that it would not progress into grand mall, or anything. Um. Oops. But I do think this just is not what he thought it was. He is widely known as the best ped neurologist in the area. On one hand, it was good that I believed him because I was not real anxious. Looking back I have no idea how but I remained calm thru the actual seizure. I just kept talking to him, reassuring him. Turns out, he doesn't remember so I guess I coukdve been hysterical.

Ernie said...

Jenny- It was so heart-stopping awful. Felt like it would never end. I was ill prepared for the whole thing, but him acting so confused and agitated and unable to see me or speak for the drive to the hospital and for the first hour or two in the ER was really difficult. We are hoping anti seizure meds are the answer.