Adorable Fluffy Buns and the Friday Night Phone Call
Posted on January 21, 2013
Have you ever had an unusual response to medication? I have. Tylenol IV gives me headaches, morphine makes me warm and tingly, and Entex mentally turns me into a zombie…the Romero kind, not the running, jumping, climbing trees kind movie/TV audiences love that couldn’t possibly exist. The reason I ask is because my father-in-law who doesn’t know he’s my father-in-law has been on quite a bit of medication after his surgery last week. One or the other or both of his sons spend the day with him (I spend time there, too, when I’m not with my dad) and help monitor his pain levels, oxygen etc. Unfortunately, when we leave, it’s anybody’s guess what happens to him. We got a dose of this uncertainty last Friday night in the form of a phone call after we returned home, sat down with a nice cup of tea and started watching an episode of Mrs. Brown’s Boys.
My fluffy-bunned adorable husband picked up the phone.
FIL: We have a problem.
This is when we automatically think something with his condition has gone wrong and rather than wait for the doctor to call us, he’s giving us a heads-up.
Ralph: What’s the matter?
FIL: There’s some strange shit going on.
Ralph: What do you mean?
FIL: People are disappearing. There’s four gone already. I heard them talking.
FIL: They’re human trafficking going on here.
Ralph: In Michigan?
FIL: I gotta get out of here!
Ralph: We’ll be right there.
I shit you not. The problem isn’t that we’ve now figured out something’s gone wonky with his medication, but rather we can’t stop laughing. This is SO unlike his father. Anyway, we got dressed again and headed back up to the hospital. And since visiting hours were over, we had to go to the security desk through the emergency room. Ralph has to explain where we’re going and who we need to see on which floor and in what room.
Security Guard: It’s after visiting hours.
I decide to summarize the problem.
Moi: His father called, is having a reaction to the medication and told us there’s human trafficking going on upstairs.
Security Guard: Go right up.
He didn’t even blink twice, which makes us wonder how often this has happens. So we get up to the room and the nursing assistant is talking to father-in-law, who looks rather wild-eyed and sweaty, but acts more at ease…or so we think. He’s reassuring the assistant that he’s just feeling a little pain, etc, so we wait for the assistant to finish and walk towards the hallway to get the nurse for some pain medication. We’ve also assumed the worst has passed.
FIL: Is he gone yet?
We’re now a little suspicious that the worst hasn’t passed at all.
FIL: He’s in on it. You’ve got to get me out of here. People are disappearing left and right.
I left went to the door just out of sight at this point because I knew if I looked at my husband, we’d both start laughing again and that just didn’t seem nice. We’ve never seen his dad like this and, honestly, it was funny. Ralph, however, did crack a smile.
FIL: Don’t f’in laugh at me. I’m not crazy!
It’s about now that Ralph starts to wonder if his dad might actually be lucid, telling the truth and something might be going on. His father isn’t prone to exaggeration and is retired military. What if there’s really something to what he’s saying, right?
FIL: Why did they take my passport?
Ralph: Your passport? Dad, you don’t have a passport.
FIL: Then how did I get to Mexico?
NOW we know there’s nothing to what he’s saying. So while Ralph talked his dad down, I went and talked to his nurse and explained what was going on. She’d given him four different medications twenty minutes earlier, so that was most likely the culprit. She came back in a short time later, asked him some questions about where he was, how he got there, etc. and he started to realize that he wasn’t thinking clearly. She also gave him some pain medication and he was out like a light shortly after. Poor guy.
We left a little while later, still trying not to laugh at how odd an experience this was, when we passed an unmarked white van in the parking lot and two men in hoodies getting out of it. I looked at the hubby, he looked at me and we agreed that it was best we just get into our vehicle and not ask questions.
I visited father-in-law the next day and when I walked in, greeted him with “Buenos Dias, Senor. Como estas?” He wasn’t laughing. My brother-in-law and I were, but not father-in-law. And that’s okay. As much as he teases his boys, it’ll be a little while before he lives this one down. Si?
So, anybody else ever have a reaction like this that they’d care to share for our Monday amusement?
Kristoffer Gair (who formerly wrote under the pseudonym Kage Alan) is the Detroit-based author of Honor Unbound, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To My Sexual Orientation, Andy Stevenson Vs. The Lord Of The Loins, Gaylias: Operation Thunderspell, several short stories featured in anthologies (to be combined in a forthcoming book), the recently re-published novella Falling Awake, its sequel, Falling Awake II: Revenant and Falling Awake III: Requiem.
9 Responses to “Adorable Fluffy Buns & the Friday Night Phone Call”
January 21, 2013 at 10:33 am
you crack me up you really do.
i had a reaction to the drugs the gave me for childbirth, i sat up at one point and asked where the cricket ball was, and then about 20 hours later i asked the midwife in all seriousness if you could eat pink spiders.
January 21, 2013 at 11:08 am
Pink spiders? lol Very dainty. I imagine they’re too crunchy, though.
January 21, 2013 at 10:42 am
Kris, your ability to laugh at things that would terrify other people never ceases to impress me. I had a similar experience with my mother as she was dying of lung cancer and told me that she could hear people in the next room talking about her and laughing. I of course was furious and went to the nurse demanding to know who these people were and why they were doing this. Amazing how who we are dictates how we react to similar situations. I like your reaction far better than mine.
January 21, 2013 at 11:10 am
I think it was just the right thing said at the right moment and we needed to laugh. We needed to look at what was going on as something more than just problems heaping up on top of problems. It gave us a small respite and I’m thankful for that. After three weeks of this, it’s getting a little harder to find things to make him laugh about.
January 21, 2013 at 10:52 am
Been there and done that with my own father who use to call me my mother after he took his meds. But recently I did that to Kimber ask her about it. It will get better in time. Just be patient and remember times like this when things gets stressed. Hugs to you and pookie. Your FIL will laugh at this when you least expect it. Great post by the way.
January 21, 2013 at 11:11 am
It does make me wonder about the stories that security guard could tell considering how easily he let us in. He must get it a lot. And, oh Kimberrrrrrrr… lol
Vastine Bondurant says:
January 21, 2013 at 11:12 am
I can’t say I’ve ever had the experience. But I can’t help but wonder what wonderful, bizarre stories a writer could come up with on such stuff. No, I didn’t say that, did I? LOL.
I love Ralph’s calm during all of this! And your humor. Hugs to you both.
Patti Logan says:
January 21, 2013 at 1:19 pm
That’s hilarious. Especially the part about being in Mexico. Awww. I can so relate to the confused state. My friends would say I’m confused most of the time. It did happen to me once. About eight years ago, I went into the hospital for a minor surgery and they put me out of my misery with morphine. My five year old came to visit.
Sasha: “Mommy, how are you feeling?”
Me (pointing to my hand): “Shhh. I’m on the phone.”
Sasha: “Mom, you’re not holding your phone.”
Me: “They’re calling in the grasshoppers so you’d better leave now.”
Sasha and the rest of my family (bursting into laughter)
Me: “Shhh. What is truly wrong with all of you?”
Or, so it was relayed to me. I still can’t live it down
Lloyd Songal says:
January 21, 2013 at 10:54 pm
This is really not funny but after having had heart bypass surgery and a bovine valve transplant. My father was unable to communicate in an understandable manner the following morning. Hospital staff assumed that he had suffered a stroke during the night while still in I. C. U. . When arriving at the hospital after his transfer to a regular room his first words to me and my lover were, “Where do you come from?” to which I immediately burst into uncontrollable laughter until I could control myself enough to repeat his question to him adding, “What do you mean?”. H had always been interested in maps and routes so he was trying to ask how we had gotten tot the hospital. As it turned out he did not have a stroke but rather a large brain tumor, which after all the cat scans and MRI’s you may have thought someone may have caught; but they did not. He survived a week in the hospital recovering from surgery and then going directly to hospice surviving only two more days. Never in any pain but declining into speechlessness.