Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Eat More Chicken

My father has been visiting my brother and his family out in Washington. He was due to fly home today. Instead, he will be there at least one more day. What follows is a recap of the last 24 hours.

Monday 11:40pm - the phone rings, waking me from a dead sleep. It's my brother.

Him: I thought you would be up. We have laughed so hard we are crying and we thought you would be up to share it with us.

Me: I'm up now.

Him: We have been having dinner and got to laughing. Listen to Dad . . . (in the background I hear a loud gagging sound). He's trying to hock up some broccoli or something and it's so funny that we are both laughing and crying. Sorry, we thought you would be up. Go back to sleep.

Tuesday 8:40am - blackberry message from my brother:

"Dad was cracking up earlier but hasn't stopped. We've been at the ER for three hours now. They think he has something stuck in his throat because all he pukes is mucus and saliva. They are calling in a GI doc to maybe scope his throat and pull out that chunk of broccoli or chicken. Will let you know what happens."

8:41am - call from my brother:

Him: Do you have Mary's number? (My dad's girlfriend)

Me: No. What the heck?

Him: Listen

(Very loud extended gagging followed by "oooowwwwwwwwwwwww".

Me: (laughing hysterically) Oh my gosh! I am so glad it's you.

Him: Hey Dad, she's laughing at you.

Me: Call me later.

9:20am - I send my brother a blackberry message:

"Could he have sucked it into his lungs?"

9:24am - He responds: "Nope. It's blocking him from swallowing rather than breathing. We would be talking about the will if it had gone down that pipe 11 hours ago. He got to talk to Mary. He just really likes it out here and wanted to figure out a way to miss his flight."

9:35am - I respond: "It's in your long term best interest that he make his flight."

10:08am - He replies: "I'm pretty sure he'll be asleep at his scheduled flight time of 1:30. They are getting ready to take him to the GI Lab. He may just move in if I'm not careful."

10:14am - I say: "Not a good idea. You know he can only do "Good Pappaw" for short periods of time."

10:18am - He says: "He's much better at Good Pappaw now than he used to be. Around my kids anyway. But just as Superman steps into a phone booth, once our father has me alone, Tourettes Man emerges. It's amazing how people are a lot stupider when I drive somewhere alone with my father."

12:37pm - My brother: "They started an upper endoscopy 10 minutes ago. Should be simple, go in, push the blockage through, and done. Waiting to see the doc. It sucks to hear our father say he's scared."

12:38pm - Me: "I love you."

Approx. 5pm - Phone call from my brother:

Him: Well it took so long because the doctor said that in 25 years, that was the most food he had ever seen impacted in an esophagus.

Me: (Laughing hysterically) In 25 years?

Him: Yeah, and when they tried to wake him up from the anesthesia, he did his Ozzie Osborn impression.

Me: (Laughing so hard I was crying) Is he okay now?

Him: Yes, he's sleeping at my house now. He will probably fly out tomorrow if he's okay. I am going to bed. That is if I can ever get the image out of my head of my father, in his patient gown, butt nekkid, trying to get down off the gurney. He didn't get out far enough and got his testicles caught on the edge. My God, my father had a man-gina!

Me: (crying, laughing, snorting) Go to bed. I will call the others. They can call you tomorrow for the details.

Now you have heard the newest of the many "Cunningham" stories that we retell at family gatherings. This one will be told and retold. Get sick in a funny way, we WILL laugh at you. There is nothing sacred in our family.


Wanda said...

Oh my you paint a vivid picture with your words.

My sides are hurting from laughing and crying....

What great family memories and stories....Loved it!!

Rosy said...

Ha Ha Ha I can see why this can be funny and yet I bet your father was most certainly suffering all at the same time.

I wander off of Wanda's blog onto yours and I am glad I did.

Ruth D~ said...

Hmmmm . . . good sense of humor you all have. I think you had to be there . . . but if your father's okay, I guess I can chuckle. :>)