"Circumstances are subject to change, at any minute, without notice." So said my father so often that we all thought he made it up. When I Google the phrase, all I get are terms and conditions for travel arrangements, so maybe he did make it up. But I hate it when it happens.
Today has been a doozy. The good news is that he loves the little dog and the cat that I brought home from the animal shelter; plus the orthopedist visit proved hopeful. The rotator cuff does not seem damaged beyond repair. (See the previous two posts) A high- powered steroid cocktail injection will tell the tale within the next three weeks. If the pain gets worse, an MRI will determine whether surgery is needed. The bad news is how he’s been acting. I’ve earned the t-shirt – the Brunt.
Is it "roid rage"? Who knows!
Pain? No doubt.
Am I sick of it? You bet.
But here’s the big change: he read the package inserts on Aricept and Namenda.
"These are for people who have Alzheimer’s," he said.
Like spiders, heat crawled up my neck as I realized he does not know.
"Do I have to take it even though I don’t have it?" he asked.
"The doctor said you have it."
"No, he did not! He said I have the gene and I might get it."
"Ninety-eight percent…the other two percent can’t be proven until autopsy."
There it is.
"So I’ve got Alzheimer’s."
I shook my head.
The next few moments were rough to watch and had to be worse for him, as he went straight for the worst-case scenario.
"No! No!" I argued back. "You could have years and years...good years"
"But it’s gonna get me."
"Well... eventually...but they might find a cure within the next two years!"
"Ain’t that some s...! What a way to have to live..."
"Believe me when I tell you I would feel the same way."
He walked out of the room and when he returned the pain in his face brought tears.
"You have to know how I have grieved about this, and made deals with God..."
He looked at me with knowing.
"...and I have vowed I will be here for you no matter what. That’s why you have got to stop trying to run me off!"
The look on his face convinced me I need say no more.
We spoke of how sick he’s felt since he fell, and how every day he feels sick is a day we can’t get back.
I wonder how long he could have gone without knowing if the bees hadn’t attacked him and caused the fall that injured his shoulder.
I could have sworn he knew. He's even joked about it. Oh, God, he really did not know until today.
Do we cry together?