Thirteen years

It was 13 years ago this month that my father had his first heart attacks. He had an athrectomy to clear the blockage. I had a look at my life and took the first tentative steps into recovery.

Last week my dad gave in to reality and went to the hospital again. He had an emergency triple-bypass. All the blockages were in excess of 90% and one was over three inches long. I’m wondering if they just sent that one out to Oscar-Meyer.

He doesn’t do surgery well and just as with his many knee surgeries these past years, he was released and went back in again due to complications. Medications in general—pain medications in particular—are a problem for him, as is his breathing. He may come home again tomorrow.

In any event, I’m glad at least one of us is doing better 13 years down the road.

Family secrets seem to burst out into the light during these things. My middle brother broke the taboo this time. He’s at the family place in Canada this week and woke up Tuesday morning saying, “My father’s going back into the hospital today.” A few hours later, the ambulance arrived.

In relaying the story this morning, my mother made it sound like he’d run off with 40 hookers, three farm animals and a midget or something. She shut up when I reminded her that I too am affected with “that psychic shit.” And it’s nice to know I’m not the only one.

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