One might think that having your father outside your home dancing in Native American Pow Wow fashion would be uncomfortable. Or perhaps begging your father to eat. The reality for me is that right now is boring. It’s uncomfortable.
My father does the exact same routine everyday.
E .V. E. R. Y.
D. A. M. N.
D. A. Y.
This means I get to live through the same day everyday.
He mutters perhaps two or three sentences each day that aren’t coaxed out of him. That’s it. Every other minute is watching T.V. or eating. I can’t get him to do anything unless we have to go out for an appointment. He did ride with me today to Petco. He stayed in the car. It’s a start.
I feel like I’m just complaining, but please note that I am not. I’m fascinated by this and albeit sad and sometimes mind blowing irritating, I’m not complaining.
I’m fascinated by the fact that for three weeks straight my father will eat waffles for breakfast. Then for another few weeks he’ll switch it up to scrambled eggs and a piece of toast. Same for lunch and same for television. It’s all or nothing with him. Routine, routine, routine.
It’s really rather boring. I made a choice to leave this past Saturday and take my daughter shopping. I left him home alone. He called me once to see if he could let my dogs outside and one other time to tell me he can’t find the spaghetti I put in the fridge. He actually said, “Well I see spaghetti, but it’s not on a plate.” Okay dad, really. That’s your spaghetti and I’m sorry I didn’t do the entire process of food on plate for you.
This is why I decided to leave and spend time with my daughter.
Filling in the rest of the day is shame. Lots and lots of shame. For some reason I’ve been thinking about a situation I was in when I was 14. I was on vacation in Florida. I got inside the elevator to go up to our condo. There was myself, two guys probably in their 30’s and two other young girls my age. The elevator broke down. I can’t remember just exactly how long we were in there, but I can tell you that it was a long time and something horrifying happened in there.
One of the young girls started crying and long story short, it turns out she was going up to her room because she had to poop. Yep, I just said that. This was like 30 years ago, so no one was in a damn hurry to get us out of there. It got to the point that we were all consoling her and telling her we understood. I mean, she really had to go. So she did. Literally.
I’ve been thinking about this lately because it’s one of those awkward moments in life that just by weird chance I was part of. I don’t know that girl, couldn’t tell you what she looked like, but I can remember what happened. I wonder if she remembers us… I would be willing to bet she remembers all of our faces. It’s probably one of the most vivid, horrid, embarrassing memories this person has of her adolescence.
What a strange thing to compare my father with, but that’s how my brain works. I feel like when I look at my father holding his hand over his forehead, he’s thinking about all the times he’s shit in his pants. Figuratively.