Thursday, May 22, 2014

Stress


In times of great stress, some people bite their nails; others suffer debilitating headaches, while still others have full-blown, call-the-guys-in-the-white coats nervous breakdowns. Then there are those of us who suffer with things that can’t be spoken about in polite company. I had one such episode this afternoon.

Noticing the impending storms in the forecast, I thought it might be a good idea to get the grass cut. The fact that it was 91 degrees and humid and I have been worried sick about my Dad for nearly two months never entered my mind. All I saw was tall grass and lots of green and orange spots on the radar.

About half way through the job I begin to feel a bit light headed. A more prudent person might have taken a break and gotten something to drink. An even more prudent person would have hired some slack-jawed kid from the neighborhood to cut the grass for him, but that wasn’t going to happen…because I’m too cheap and not at all prudent. So, I continued on and finished the job, feeling worse and worse by the minute. By the time I put the mower away, I was sweating like Donald Sterling at a Bojangles franchise in Watts.

I made my way up the stairs and about the time I got to the bedroom I felt the lights going out and luckily had the presence of mind to get on the floor before I fell. I lay there for a minute or so, and then managed to get myself onto the bed where I finally called out to Pam for assistance. She saved the day by applying cold washcloths to my face, the same stuff my Mom used to do whenever I got sick when I was a kid. Then she noticed it…the towel I was laying on. I don’t actually remember doing it, but apparently, when I rose from the floor, despite extreme discomfort, I had the presence of mind to walk into the bathroom, got a bath towel, and spread it out on the bed before collapsing onto it.

“I can’t believe you thought to put a towel down before lying on the bed!” she beamed. “I’ve trained you so well.”

“Are you kidding? Did you see how much they charged you last week to dry clean this comforter??”

See, I told you I was cheap.

I’m fine now, crisis avoided. I managed to feel well enough after dinner to go over to see Dad. I fed him some ice cream, gave him a shoulder rub and took him for a spin around the nursing home in his wheel chair.

He had no idea who I was.