Saturday, February 02, 2008

As if she (we) needed something else to deal with

Just after Christmas, my mom's pneumonia recurred. It wasn't as bad this time and didn't require hopitalization. Yet, it was there and had us concerned. A visit to the pulmonologist and chest x-rays confirmed the situation.

A bronchoscope was ordered for January 2. Nothing particularly horrible was found. No exotic or drug-resistant bacteria. No cancer. Just normal bacteria, along with some green slimy junk.

It scares me that she had green slimy junk in her lungs. (pulmonologist's words. He was certainly trying to use layman's terms for us. I wish he had just used his big doctor words.)

They vacuumed it all out and put her on yet another round of antibiotics in efforts to kill the green slimy junk.

These were some very cold days. Record lows for Northeast Alabama. fun fun fun

The day after my mom's lung vacuuming, she was home, resting in bed. My dad came home for lunch (not his normal routine.) He arrived in time to find that a water line to the water heater had frozen and broken and was leaking water through the celing everywhere in their living room and kitchen.

It is important and interesting to note that their home is 2-stories and that the living room and kitchen and master bedroom are on the ground floor. The water was pouring from the upstairs. The water heater is in their attic.

Why would you install a water heater in an attic?

That mystery has yet to be solved.

The good Lord's Providence to have my dad at home at that very time prevented the event from escalating into a full-blown flood. He quickly found the break in the line and repaired it.

My mom called and told me of her misfortune. {cue the griping and complaining and self-pity}

I told her what she needed to do next. She explained that my dad (aka mr inventions-thinking-outside-the-box) had said he could get the carpet dried himself. I called him and told him that the insurance would take care of it and to let the PROFESSIONAL WATER CLEAN-UP PEOPLE handle it.

"I know how to clean it up that no one has ever thought of."

{in my head: there's a reason no one has ever thought of it. it won't work.} Let them do the job. You don't have time, and mom can't handle the stress.

"Fine. Call the insurance for me then, please."

So, my experience as the wife of a home-owners insurance claims adjuster (for 10 long years) paid off. I dropped his name to the clean-up crew. They remembered him fondly (the miracles in my life have yet to end.) They brought their many and LOUD fans and air-scrubbers (still trying to figure out how you SCRUB AIR) and began to dry the carpet.

{cutting this long story shortER}

Mom stayed with us off and on for a few weeks while the carpet dried. She couldn't risk being exposed to the mold, mildew and dust.

There we no in-law fireworks while stayed here. (miracle? check!)

The carpet will have to be replaced. Carpet more than 5 years old or so can't be stretched back down. Water soaked under the vinyl flooring in the kitchen and ruined the luan underneath, so new vinyl goes in there. Walls and ceilings get painted throughout most of the ground floor. Cabinets will have to be removed from the kitchen to remove the ruined luan (could result in new countertops and possibly new cabinets.)

My parents are getting a major re-decorating courtesy of the insurance company (less their deductible and upgrades on flooring and the new stove she bought and upgrade to Corian-like countertops).

I've enjoyed my mom (and dad, when he wasn't traveling) staying with us. She has helped me juggle life with a demanding and loud-mouthed 1 year-old and made Stinkerbell feel special.

There is one not-so-small hitch in this redecorating scheme...

Their home has some issues with floor joists being warped or something. There are spots in their floor where there are bumps.

I have busted my chops to line up the flooring and cabinet guys to begin their work Monday morning, bright and early. So, naturally, my dad decides LAST NIGHT (Friday night, about 7pm) that he should get those floor joists repaired or replaced or something while the house is already torn up with this other repairs.

I don't disagree with the "strike while the iron is hot" thinking. Not at all. My problem is that he should have started heating and/or striking this particular iron 2 weeks ago before I lined up the crews. Or AT LEAST before those businesses closed for the weekend!

I think he understood my frustration when I told him that 7pm Friday prior to the work beginning was a little late to START the investigation into this depth of repairs and HE needs to call them first thing Monday morning and reschedule. He would also need to find an apartment for them to live in during those repairs.

Yes, they could stay here. But, to be brutally honest, I like living with the memories of the Miracle of the Overnight Visits with My Parents. Not the nightmare that could haunt me forever when The Mighty Hunter loses his LIMITED PATIENCE and lets loose his alter ego, The Mighty Asshole.

Not that he is an asshole. He just pretends to be one.

You know for comic relief.

And promotion of my dependence on hair color and wrinkle creams.

Ok, well, sometimes, he's an asshole. But I think he prefers the title of Miserable S.O.B.

But aren't most men miserable S.O.B.'s or assholes from time to time? And if you think/say that yours isn't, you're lying or blind or stupid or all the wild combination of all three. Also, you may be drunk or over-medicated.


So, my dad irritated me, and I dropped my General Contractor hat into his lap and Will Leave It There.

This tirade sounds like the title is about ME! and not my MOM! and DAD! Honestly? I'm not too sure.

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