Thursday, January 21, 2010

I'm So _____ We Had This Time Together


Granny is currently staying with my aunt. After her foray to the ER almost two weeks ago, she needs around the clock care. My aunt had been trying to get Granny to come live with her for some time, and thank God someone is looking after her. She can not stand for any length of time, even to take a shower, and, well, bladder control is a thing of the past.

Of course, for the first few days, she insisted she could get by on her own. Now it is setting in that she does need full time help. It is getting to the point that she may have to be strapped into a wheelchair soon because she very well may tumble forward out of it.

So, I have the house to myself. I'll be honest, it's nice. But it is eye opening as well. I have ranted in the past about how the house is falling apart...a diagnosis that isn't too far off base. As I type, the wind is rattling the ancient, flimsy windows, and it is especially loud downstairs, where you can hear it blow through the old broken Jalousies on the porch. The floor in Granny's bedroom is like ice, partly due to the fact that her closet is not insulated, just like mine upstairs.

Over time, things had gone badly downhill. You could see through her bath towels. Her nightgowns were like rags, even though several new ones sat, tags still attached, in her drawer. I had bought some of them for her as Christmas gifts over the last few years. The throw rugs in her bedroom were filthy. A pail full of dirty adult diapers sat in the corner of her room. Several years ago (1992 maybe?), my mother had given her some barely worn sweatshirts of mine. Before Christmas, I came downstairs to find her wearing the very same sweatshirt I had worn to my first day at Aurora Middle School, September 1986.

Since she hasn't been able to really clean in some time, everything is coated with a thick layer of sticky dust, especially in the kitchen. I washed the cabinets with Murphy's oil soap, replaced the blind over the sink (it used to be white), and polished the burnished copper door pulls. Still, I feel like I'm arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. With the exception of the basement, there are no three-pronged electrical plugs in the house. The plumbing is laughable, having been put together from scraps of pipes my grandfather found while building the house. The furnace is from the mid-Fifties. The windows are falling apart. And then, the little things, like the gorgeous pink plastic tiles in the kitchen. Plastic!

I really hope she left me some Lortab.

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