My mom called me the other night to tell me that dad had fallen again. He fell — unbeknownst to me — a few days prior. This almost 6’7″ tall, 70-year-old man decided to climb up on a ladder to change a lightbulb, and missed the last two rungs on his way down. Since then, he’d fallen not once, not twice, but by the time mom called me to tell me he’d fallen and couldn’t get up, he had fallen four more times. I can’t be upset with them. It must be very difficult to not be as spry as one once was. My mom will often say when she can’t get up and go: “well Ang’, the old, gray mare ain’t what she used to be.” I guess in dad’s case it would be “the old, bald stallion ain’t what he used to be!”
He actually looked very content lying on the floor when Jeff and I got to their house. He was very relaxed, and for the most part, my parents tend to be easygoing. He casually turned his head when we entered the hall – that was all I could see through the doorway – and he said “oh, hey guys. What are you doing here?” Really, Dad? We eventually got the big guy up off of the floor; stabilized with a walker they had stored away for just such an occasion, I guess?; and into the local emergency room. Jeff headed home because somebody had to wake up with the kids for school in the morning! A few hours later, around 2am, Dad’s x-ray confirmed a broken tailbone. The after-care had clear instructions: don’t sit on it if it hurts, and it will eventually heal on its own. I returned Dad to his suburban dwelling and got myself home and into bed at 4am (thank you, husband, for letting me sleep!).
Mom is going through cancer treatment and is currently on oxygen full-time for a sneaky little clot that made its way into one of her lungs, so I am their dutiful daughter when trouble calls. After I woke up that morning, I drove out to their pharmacy to drop off dad’s prescription for a pain med. (I know, opioid crisis), and I got the uninterested “who are you dropping off for?” from the lady behind the counter. I told her it was for my dad and I gave her his name. Holy cow! I swear the lights went down and a disco ball started spinning above the register. “Oh my gosh,” she exclaimed, “we love your dad! Your parents! How are they?!” Dad broke his tailbone. “Oh no! Did he trip over his dog? We love their dog!”
Ohhhhkay, so this is where my parents are spending all of their time. You know, what? Listen. If the Old Folks Nightclub is that welcoming and their little dog can also get in, I can’t blame them for going there every week. Party on, parents.