I’ve always thought I was different, but haven’t we all. I always wondered what was going on in other people’s homes, even as a child. I always wished I knew the things that we don’t bother to talk about, major and mundane. It would be like pornography, seeing something I wasn’t supposed to. I always wondered if anyone else was terrified of their much younger brother or if they HAD to eat macaroni and cheese from a blue bowl. I’ve thought about it, and that’s what I plan to write about. I want to tell about my life, selfish right? For me, it might be therapeutic. There might be others like me though, who wonder what’s going on behind closed doors. I still don’t know very much about what’s happening in the privacy of others’ homes, but I’ll tell you about mine.
So this will be my story, in no particular order, you’ll get to know me little by little.
The first time my dad nearly died, I was 14 or 15. My mom worked 3rd shift, and always got home with just enough time to see me before I hopped on the bus and take my brother to school. My brother is 8 years younger; he’d have been 6-7. My dad was working 2nd shift, he’d be home with us through the night, and was supposed to get up with us in the morning. Usually, he was too tired from working all evening, and I got my little brother ready. As long as we were ready for school, my mom was satisfied. This day was no different. I’d gotten up to my alarm, taken a shower, and gotten my little brother up and ready. We waited for her on the couch, with the tv on. My mom always checked on my dad before she saw us off to school, just to make sure he’d just slept through his alarm and was ok. When my mom arrived home from work on this morning, I got my brother up, got our book bags together, and went to get him in my mom’s car. Once I was done, I waited for my mom to come out and take him to school. The time she left and the time my bus arrived were very similar, we never could say which would happen first. My mom didn’t come out, so I went to check on her. I heard her saying my dad’s name. She sounded scared. I went into my parents room; the smell was the first thing I noticed. It was awful! My mom was crouched over my dad, and he didn’t look right at all. He looked bloated, kind of like plastic, and there was blue stuff near his mouth. Suddenly my brother was behind me, and my mom was yelling for us to get out. She told me to call 911 and keep my brother out of there. I went and did as she asked, and waited with my brother outside. It felt like it took them forever to get there, but they finally came, and my mother gathered us up and we followed the ambulance to the hospital.
What had happened was that my dad had been feeling rough the night before. He’d taken some cold medicine, a double dose. While it’s not recommended, it wasn’t unusual for my dad to do this, and he’d been fine every time before. Well, my dad was aging, and he was on blood pressure medication. Anyone with blood pressure issues should take cold medicine indicated for them, not regular cold medicine. My dad had taken regular cold medicine. This combination caused his blood pressure to spike, and all the problems associated. He’d slipped into a coma through the night. He’d vomited into his lungs. He was very sick, and we soon learned his heart had stopped 3 times in the ambulance alone. He wasn’t expected to live much longer. So we started calling family, and taking visitors in the ICU.
We were so lucky. Maybe ten days later, my dad walked out of there. We watched and waited. We told our family what the doctors told us, and we told the doctors what we wanted to hear. From the very first time those doctors told us that my dad wouldn’t make it, we simply told them they didn’t know him. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the last time. More importantly, we were right about my dad.