Friday, December 09, 2005

Guess Hard-Headedness Runs In The Family

I'm still blinking, trying to, er, "process", I think is the psychobabble term.

You all know my Dad, right?

The "Ole RFer".

He comments lots.

My whole family knows about the blog. Hell, I started the damn thing with them in mind, mostly. Remember me? Lazy. Sending an e-mail to various and sundry was a bit more than I seemed to get around to, so el blog seemed both a great communication tool as well as a way to connect to other as yet unknown friends. And so it worked. Swimmingly. And the others connected with my various and sundry and now it seems like a virtual basement with bar and foosball table and ping pong. Beanbag chairs in the corners. Us chatting.

Got a call from my beloved step-mom, Cathy, a bit ago.

I am blessed, you see. When my parents split, it was with, well, on my part, no remembered hostility. They both found partners who loved them, who they loved, and who loved their kids. I consider myself to have 4 parents and use the "step" moniker only to relieve confusion.


The call.

We don't talk on the phone. None of the "us" I am close to. None of us really likes to chatter on the phone as far as I am aware. We are more face-to-face folks. Or e-mail. We do love our e-mail. When I lived in Portland, within miles of all of my parents, I still e-mailed much more than phoned.

A phone call is like a telegram of 60 years ago.

Bad, urgent news.

So. Cathy calls.

I am afraid I am not my usual warm person as she launches into the news. I am too busy trying to think of another Cathy who I might possibly know who would call on a Friday night. Trying to avoid the obvious: Bad news.

It seems my darling, adored Dad had a fall. A fall from a ladder, where he was brushing leaves from the roof gutter, landing on the concrete driveway. On his head.

He is alive. He seems to have, with the information we have thus far, in the first several hours, escaped with more than his share of fortune. Thank you Merciful God. (What? Just because I don't go to church, you think I am not religious? I am quite religious, I just don't care for the religion that I see, by and large. Waaaay too much of the judging and waaaay too little of the genuine love.)

Poor Cathy found him on the concrete drive, on his right side, unconscious, much blood. They were going to Lifeflight him the distance to OHSU, the local (and best) trauma center (and my alma mater, thankyouverymuch) but decided he was stable enough to go via ambulance.

To run down what Cathy was able to pass on: He has a small subarachnoid hematoma (small bleed between the pia mater, which covers the brain and spinal cord, and the dura mater, the tough cover on the outside of the brain and cord. (He is sure to have a hell of a headache, my dear, old dad, as the subarachnoid has all the pain fibers. Just what one wants on top of a concussion.) He regained consciousness and does remember being on the ladder. He also is oriented to other particulars (date, person, etc). He knows Cathy. He is concerned enough to send her home to eat and sleep. (Yeah, right. She will do her best, but she adores him.) He has two massive black eyes. He swallowed a fair amount of blood, but seems to have no further bleeding. He is moving all four extremities and his vision is intact. He is in the ICU and will have another one or two CT scans over the next day or so.

It goes without saying that we could use your good thoughts at this point.

He is extremely strong. Hell, the man runs, does aerobics and yoga, lifts weights and I don't know what else. Yes, he kayaks (although his shoulder was bugging him a bit, so he couldn't do so on their recent excursion). He and I are also way too similar, and would happily spend our afternoons (and/or mornings) with a book and a pot of tea or a drop of something, depending on the time of day. Cats in a previous life.

I know he'd love to hear from you, when he is able to focus on a computer screen, again, so feel free to send a bit of cheer via the comments. (Or the odd scolding for causing his daughter such concern, the selfish ol' coot). We are that sort.

By the way. He is and has always been my #1 fan, driving to cross-country meets in bleak, achy-cold and drizzly November, over an hour away for 6 years running. Plus 9 seasons of track. I don't think he missed a single meet.

Please, God, let this be the worst. He really is the best of all dads.

Cathy could use a spare bit of hug, too.

I'll let you know as I know.

He is part of our little group.



Blogger Teri said...

Ow. ow. ow. ow.

I'm doing my best to think up some suitably cheery and comforting comment for all involved, and coming up only with awkwardness, but I'm thinking cheery and comforting thoughts your direction and praying that the black eyes and headache are the worst of it.

12:14 AM  
Blogger CarpeDM said...

Oh no! I adore the Ole RFer! I hope that he feels better soon and that his pain is minimal.

And dang it, no scaring us like this!

I'll be praying for all of you (and no, I don't go to church either but I'm also spiritual). Much love and hugs and other stuff.

4:30 AM  
Blogger listmaker said...

Oh, no! I'm so sorry. All my good thoughts are heading your dad's way. Keep us posted.

10:40 AM  
Anonymous Kate W. said...

UNBELIEVABLE! I am sending good thoughts, many prayers and big hugs to you all! I can't wait until the sweet Ole RFer is back on his feet to hear his version of the story! Let us know updates!

11:11 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

Hey guys, Thanks for all the good wishes. I talked to Cathy earlier this morning and he was doing better. The repeat CT scan showed no new bleeding and they were moving him from the ICU to a regular bed as soon as one becomes availiable. A little bit ago, I even got to speak to him. He sounded relatively good but a bit groggy (no kidding).

More as I hear.

3:52 PM  
Blogger moegirl said...

Oh no! Your Dad is so cool. I'm soooo sorry this has happened. I hope he is back in fine form soon. Best to him and Cathy, and of course, you too. It is very hard to be far from family when bad stuff happens and all you want to do is be there. HUGS

1:55 AM  
Blogger brooksba said...

Oh! I'm sorry to hear about Old RFer. Best wishes to a speedy recovery.

6:00 AM  
Blogger Babs said...

Hoping he recovers lickety split!!

6:54 AM  
Blogger The Lioness said...

Oh no, poor thing! Ole RF, you get better exceedingly fast please, you are much missed and the comment box is sort of empty now. Cathy, he kayaks out of his own free will. I mean, no one is forcing him, he probably even likes to hike. Tjose people are born w the extra strength and resilience they stole from the rest of us who know better. I am sure he will be all right very soon. Please know that across several continents he, and you, are in our thoughts.

And Diana, a big tight hug, life cetrainly is determined to prove to you it's not at all abt fairness. May it all become light and fluffy soon.

7:06 PM  
Blogger The Lioness said...

Oh, just read comments, Ole RF's better already! YEY! No more bleeding, VERY VERY EXCELLENT. Continental Snoppy Dance will be performed presently!

7:07 PM  
Blogger Jamie said...

Oh my goodness...

I just now came and read what had happened. I am so, so, so glad it was not worse, but it is still a terrible thing to have happened.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery!!!


10:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please give him my best wishes. And, my sincere hope the the Holiday Season delivers a lot more cheer and a lot less fear!

Aim High!

5:16 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home