Wednesday, December 10, 2008

2nd Post for Today -- I Need Your Help!

CN has a super good idea for what to get for his mom for Christmas. She has a new dishwasher, but hasn't actually hooked it up yet, due to her being so busy with stuff. So he's going to pay for a guy to go over to her house and hook it up for her. I think this is a super awesome idea, because she would never get around to it, and even if she did, she would probably talk herself out of paying for it, especially now that she lost her job. You see, the poor woman has never had a dishwasher, so she's already so used to washing it all by hand, anyway. (I really need to tell y'all about her kitchen issues...remind me.)

I'm getting off-track.

As awesome of an idea as this is, and as easily as the idea occurred to him, he is totally baffled as to what to get for his dad. And I am no help. What do you get for a guy who is too weak to get out of bed? He can't hold anything in his hands, because his nerve endings are all shot. All he does is eat, sleep and watch TV. He's too sick and tired to do anything else. Now that hospice is involved, we know he doesn't have a lot of time left. And CN already got him a bunch of DVDs for his birthday.

So we are stumped.

I have looked on the internet for ideas, and a lot of people say it's good to give terminally ill people sentimental things, like photo albums. Other people suggest everyone write down what the person means to them and tell them what you would normally not say until you're at their funeral. Most people recommend "just quality time to talk to them and tell them how much you love them".

Well, CN's family isn't very sentimental or touchy-feely. That would just be weird and awkward. So that sort of thing is out. Which I'm kind of glad about, because watching that go down would be so depressing and it would probably make CN's mom cry. Which would make me cry. Which would be a really sucky Christmas.

I was thinking maybe some gourmet food would be good, or just a bunch of homemade yummies, like cookies or snacks. That's about all the enjoyment he has left now.

Can anyone think of anything better than that?

Ugh. I am depressed now, just thinking about this. I remember the last Christmas we had with my dad. We had Christmas in the hospital. It was the most depressing day of my life. In a lot of ways, it was worse than his funeral. Because if you are too sick to be home for Christmas, you are really sick. Like, dying sick. And all the nurses look at you with pity, because they know what's coming. It sucks.

On that note, if you know anyone who is in the hospital during the holidays, please visit them. It is miserable to be there at that time, even if it's not a serious illness.

Crap. This post is really sad. Sorry, guys. Read the next one (the one from earlier today). It's more upbeat.

Tomorrow will be good and bitchy! My mom really pissed me off this week, so I have lots to vent about! Stay tuned!


columbiacitygirl said...

I think that what CN's dad wants most is to see you and CN engaged for Christmas. I think that is what CN wants too, and I feel like that is what will happen. It will be happy and a bit bittersweet, I predict.

You should make CNs dad lots of sweets...that will be a labor of love for you.

Meghan (The Declaration of MY Independence) said...

I agree with columbiacitygirl! Tell CN to get that for his dad. :)

And I love your idea about making him homemade food goodness. Your a fab cook! So get your cook on!

P.S. Did you ever get my myspace message? Your not upset, are you?

teahouse said...

Oh, that's sad. Yeah, the Husband has a friend who has terminal cancer (he's already having visits from hospice) and he's too weak to even sit up and go to the computer, or talk on the phone. So the Husband has been writing him letters. Real, honest to goodness handwritten letters. We know he's getting them because he's been writing back.

I think your idea is a good one. CN's dad just wants time with you guys. That's the best gift you can give him now.

GrewUpRural said...

I agree with everyone else, spend time with his dad and make some homemade desserts if time permits.

kimmykins13 said...

Yep, make him lots of yummies, spend time with him and let CN take care of the rest. Are you not going to the Czarina's for Christmas this year?

cmk said...

To be the UNsentimental one said he watches TV. Can his cable service be upgraded to include some movie channels or On Demand? If he just needs something to occupy his time, it might work.

Alison said...

I have two little ones (4 and 6) and if it were me (in his dad's position), I would just want the promise that my husband would never let them forget me. So...maybe putting together a scrapbook or photo album from baby pictures to when he was a little boy, pictures of him with his own parents, through his school days, getting married to CN's mom, having CN and being a father to know, that one day you would show his grandchildren (YOUR children!!) so they'd know all about Grandpa and he'd still be part of their lives even though he won't be there. Is this coming across right? I don't know...if it were me, something like this would mean so much. It would be hard for you guys to put together though...emotional.

Jonathan Zero said...

yeah, some of your homebaked goodies and quality time spent talking laughing etc with CN's mother and father and of course CN sounds like a good thing to me. CN getting the dish washer hooked up I think would mean a lot to his mother.

Coco said...

I think the baking thing is good-it's personal so will be a bit sweet, and YUMMY! :) And, if you do decide you want to do something "picture-y" (I'm full of fake words today), you could think about going in on a digital picture frame and scanning in a bunch of pics, maybe funny ones? of the family. That could be right by his bed and I think some can be set to scroll pictures, and he wouldn't even have to "do" anything. Anyway, I'm sure just being there and entertaining him will be enough! :)

(M)ary said...

I would find out what he is craving right now. If he is terminally ill his food and drink tastes may be limited depending on how sick he feels.

Does he get cold easily? Maybe a warm quilt or blanket would be nice?

How about a dvd of family pictures? Something he can watch on the tv.

Jill said...

Generally, terminally ill folks don't even really have the appetite to eat, so if you are going to make some yummies, please reassure CN's dad that he is under no obligation to sample the goodies unless he feels up to it. Especially with cancer patients, the appetite is often one of the things to really disappear. Sometimes ice cream is appealing (or other cold, easily swallowed items). When my friend's dad was dying of cancer around Christmastime, what made him the happiest was knowing his son was happy with his current girlfriend (now his wife) and the quality time they spent together (his family was NOT the sappy type so the sentimental crap didn't work there either). Gifts really are not necessary. It may sound contrite, but it's true.

Virginia Belle said...

WOW! You guys are so sweet to give all these ideas!!

i think i will stick to my original plan of baking him yummy treats. he is still eating pretty well.

i really like all the ideas for the photo albums, but CN's family has very few photos. in that way, they are kind of like me! we aren't big photo takers. i have only seen a handful of photos of CN when he was a kid.

i'm imagining a photo album viewing, and it would be awkward. i'm telling you, this is NOT a touchy feely family. you get one hug per visit. LOL if my mom weren't like that, i'd think they were weird. :)

and columbia city girl -- WHOA NELLY!!! too soon for that. according to CN, anyway. i'm not expecting anything in that arena before next summer. don't hold your breath.

teahouse -- i really like your idea. i think i will throw that out for CN. perhaps it's easier for them to show affection through letters. i know that i cherish the letters i have from my dad.

kimmy -- yes, i am. but i get almost 3 weeks off at Xmas, so i get to see everyone! it's great!

cmk -- i thought your idea was good at first, and ran it by CN. however, it turns out that he watches whatever is on! it seems to me he watches a lot of NASCAR. but that might just be coincidence!

jill-- that's good to know about the ice cream. maybe i will get him some super yummy hagen-daaz! thanks for the heads up.

don said...

I don't know what his medical situation is or what kind of guy he is, or what he'd like, but if I was in his position I know what I'd want...

(you're gonna think this is a stupid guy idea,..)

I'd want a beer. You could get an import selection or something. Even if I couldn't drink it, it would make me feel good to get it. And if I couldn't drink it myself it would be something I could share with people who came to see me.

Just an idea, and might not work for this guy, but that's what I'd want.

Stuck said...

Just to give a not-touchy-feely guy's perspective...

My father and I haven't told each other "I love you" since I was little. Like, REALLY little. We don't hug. We don't even talk that much, really. We'll sit on the couch together and watch football when I'm over there, but not really talk.

If he was near the end, though, I can guarantee you that I'd do something sentimental, and make myself, him, and everyone in the room cry. It might be emotional, but it's the last chance I'd have to do it.

Baking sweets is a good idea, and it's a thoughtful, personal gift. But don't let CN pass this opportunity by. He doesn't have to do anything in front of anyone. But a hug and an "I love you. Thanks for being my father." would be something he'd always remember. (Don't nag him about it, of course.)