Mel, Meg, and I went to GI to see dad today. His birthday is Tuesday, but we went today since Mel and Meg couldn't get off work to go. We had a good day, probably should have had an earlier start, but we had a good time. Took dad to Applebee's for a late lunch and he got serenaded by the wait staff and got a warm brownie sundae. He was pleased. We had a really good time, actually. Nice sister, aunt, niece, daughter bonding time. We got dad a pair of Husker pajama pants and a Husker ball cap and he was thrilled. He had to show everyone his hat. I got a picture of him and Leland, I just like Leland a lot and I feel sorry for him being all by himself. His wife has passed away and they didn't have children. He's very much alone and he was so thrilled when dad gave him that Fossil watch for his birthday. After lunch we took dad to WalMart and he got his cargo pants and a few other things he needed, so he was happy about that. I hate the fact that he's so far away too, it seems like we drive so far and so long to see him and only get to spend a couple hours with him and then it's back home again. I'm glad he likes it there though, and everyone is so good to him!
I came home and downloaded the pictures Meg and I took today - and then I had a good cry. Who knows what the situation will be next year at this time? The fact is, dad has dementia and who knows where that will take us in the next year. That, and the fact that he is 79 years old this year... How many more years will we get to celebrate birthdays with him? Thank God he has some Albrecht genes that make him strong as a horse so physically I think he'll be around for awhile, it's really the mental part that I worry most about. It's so hard to watch a loved one disappear into a place you can't go. Truly, the body is just a shell with the person locked inside after while - I don't want to watch this with dad, I just don't know if I can bear it. I feel like sometimes I'm the one bearing the brunt of that burden. I know Mel is working and sleeping and doesn't have the same amount of time I do, but I hurt for dad when he calls and asks where Mel is because she won't answer the phone when she sees his number. And Missy... Psssssh. As if she'd ever care about anyone but herself. She promised dad when he moved that she be out "for sure" once a week, and probably twice. So far she's made one trip out there - to pick him up for AJ's wedding, and Mel and I took him back. Sometimes she answers the phone, but most of the time she doesn't, so obviously she's about as much help as a blow torch in hell. As usual She's now at Ray's almost all the time, of course leaving Medusa for Mel to take care of. Just like dumping her kids when something else strikes her fancy. Not sure yet what we're going to do with Buster, I think we're going to end up having to put him down... I'm not going to worry about it. I'm not going to worry about the utilities being paid or anything else. However, I am going to have to decide what to do with the life insurance that Missy is allegedly paying for. Dad has $200 left over after we pay his maintenance fee at Grand Island. Out of that I have to take $70 a month for his cable bill, and the rest is his to spend. If Missy thinks he's going to pay for the insurance she's telling everyone she's paying for, she can think again. That would give him a grand total of $30 for spending money for the month. If he gets a haircut at the barber shop at the home, that's $10, and if he buys a carton of cigarettes, that's $32, and we're already in the hole. I know he needs the burial insurance, but he can't afford it, it's that simple. And let's not even consider the $600 she owes Mel for her cell phone bill because she went 400 minutes over the plan last month. So now Mel will probably lose her phone too. What a mess... And that's how it was today, Sunday November 13, 2011.