Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Wheelchairs, Papers, and Pies

Two weeks ago I was headed to the computer to thank all of you wonderful people for the caring messages that you left on my journal when I heard a loud “You @#$%%^^*^*())!>, What the (*&^%$)(*&^%, Don‘t you (*&!@#%^&*^.” John and the computer were having another argument. The computer won ... it refused to work for two weeks. John had to baby it, buy it pieces and parts, and apologize a dozen times before it forgave him and decided to give him one more chance. John is now on computer probation. One more argument and he will be denied access for the duration of my tolerance.

My son is home from the hospital. He is in a great deal of pain, has some internal injuries that will only heal with time, faces some surgery on his leg, and is trying to learn to be patient. That’s not an easy thing for a young man to learn. Especially when he has an impatient Irish political journalist living in the same house. The two of them egg each other on to greater and greater numbskull antics that they think are hilarious. Now that they both are ’handicapped’, even though for one it is only temporary, they feel they have something other then their warped sense of humor in common and they are driving me and the teenagers out of our minds.

The teenagers are lucky. They can get on their bikes, call their friends that have cars, or their friends parents that are willing to pick them up, and disappear for the day. It’s not easy for me to sneak out of the house. It is slow work getting me and this wheelchair out of the door and in the car. By the time that I am ready to put the key in the ignition one or the both of them have struggled out and are groaning and grunting as they fold their bodies into the car and smile their innocent smiles and ask, “Where are WE going?”. And then it starts. “You drive too fast!, the light is red!, I have to go to the bathroom (that’s usually John)! turn there, you’ll get wherever you’re going faster that way! by the way where are you going?!, the light is green!, get in the other lane! don’t park HERE!, OMG look at that girl!, ouch this car hurts my injured side (that’s usually my son), there’s not enough room in this back seat (that’s from the one that didn’t beat the other one to the front seat), John does she always drive this fast?! no she usually drives too slow! I?m hungry! Me too! the lights green! turn there! what do you want to eat?! no Mexican food! I want Mexican food! no problem she can stop at two places when she gets through going to wherever she is going! hey John, look where she was going! We?re back in our own driveway!?

I usually read two papers a day; the local and the Times. It had been two days since I had seen a paper. I was feeling a bit lost and uninformed, but with an ailing man in the house one sometimes has to do without. I needed a few things from the grocery store so I grabbed John, told my son to stay in one place while we were gone and headed for the local supermarket. When we got to the store John graciously volunteered to go in for me. He sweetly suggested that I stay in the car and rest. When he came back with the groceries he made a grand gesture of handing me a shopping bag. ?I got you the papers. I know how much you have missed reading them. See, I think of you all the time.?

When I got home and got everyone settled I pulled the papers out of the bag with the intention of spending a quiet spell catching up with the news. Everything was great until I unfolded the paper. The day was a Friday and John had bought me last Tuesdays papers. He claims that he would never do such a thing on purpose. I have my doubts. He and my son laughed all day.

This past Friday I had a doctors visit. My doctor is a 30 to 45 minute drive from our house. It depends on the traffic. The appointment was for 10:20 a.m. I got up early, got all the teenagers off to school, got my son settled with food and a movie, got John pressed and dressed and we were in the car by 9:00 a.m. Everything was flowing great. We were even able to run an errand before we started the drive to the doctor?s office. Traffic wasn?t too bad and we pulled into the doctors parking area 15 minutes early. Wonderful! John got out of the car, went around to the back, opened the trunk, closed the trunk, came back around to the front, got in the car, refused to look me in the eye, and quietly whispered, ?I forgot the wheelchair. It?s still sitting in the driveway at home.?

Once again he claims he didn?t do it on purpose and maybe this time he really didn?t. After all he was the one that had to go in and tell the doctor why I wouldn?t be keeping my appointment that day. And he did come out with a shamefaced look. He said that they were all laughing their heads off and he felt like an idiot. So maybe he didn?t do that one on purpose, but ...

I did hear John and my son chortling and chuckling later in the day. I still haven?t decided if they were laughing about the doctor?s visit or the pies that they had bought and hidden in my son?s room. They thought they had found a way not to have to share. ?A pie apiece? was the whispered code of the day. What they don?t know yet is I found the pies and gave them to the teenagers to put in the spare ice box in the garage.

Let?s see who goes to bed chortling tonight!

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