Sunday, September 20, 2015

In which Sly pees in his pants at the hospital and I can't even relish the moment because it is such an awful thing to happen to anyone, even someone I do not like

OK. Primo is back for ten days. He has to return to his mom and dad's (wait - he CHOOSES to return to his mom and dad's) to be there when Sly has the Whipple procedure, which makes me think of squeezing the Charmin.

Did I tell you that Sly has been diagnosed with cancer? He has. I am sure he will not die from this.

He is going to have surgery and Primo is going to be there when he has the surgery. He will stay there for two weeks.

Primo has been on sabbatical for seven and a half months. He has made six trips to Sly and Doris' and has spent over six weeks with them. So he has spent almost 25% of his sabbatical taking care of them and their issues that either would not have happened or could have been resolved much easier if they had actually made some darn plans that included an admission that 1. they are getting older and 2. they are not getting any healthier.

I googled "Whipple procedure" and "alcohol." Guess what? You are not supposed to drink after you have this. I suspected that might be the case - isn't the pancreas (part of which is removed with the Whipple) involved in processing alcohol?

I mentioned it to Primo on the way home from the airport last night, despite the advice of my sister and of the wife of Primo's best friend, both of whom said that nothing I could say would change things and it would just upset Primo, so just be supportive.

Sam's wife wrote:

Primo needs to insist that Sly share with him his financial info. and his end of life care/wishes so that Primo can implement "his" plan when the time comes. This is practical and necessary, is there a safety deposit box, for example, with pertinent papers and financial info. that Primo may need access to. If so, he should have a key or know where it is kept. I am not sure that you can really help Primo at this point; you probably just need to be his sounding board and let him vent -- there is too much baggage and history here. His parents are going to leave a colossal mess for him to clean up; we know this. While you are trying to prevent this from happening, his parents aren't going to play nice and make things easy for him. They are selfish and self centered and not concerned with what they are doing to their son. This is such a sad and unnecessary situation and I am sorry that you and Primo are on this journey. Let us know what we can do...

Your problem is that you are trying to implement fixes for people who are illogical, irrational and unwilling. If everyone was as organized as your family there would be no 'fun' in dysfunction.

She is right. I just need to be supportive. But I also thought, "Now that I have this information about alcohol, do I have a moral obligation to mention it?"

So I asked and Primo said that any time a doctor asks about alcohol, Sly says he has a drink at night and then maybe some wine.

What Sly does not clarify is that for him, "a drink" means "six ounces of bourbon."

He also neglects to mention the after-dinner brandy.

I don't know why Sly thinks it is a good idea to lie to his doctor. I admit the things I am ashamed about to my doctor. What if the information has an impact on how I am treated for something? You don't lie about your taxes and you don't lie to your doctor.

"The good thing about the Whipple is my dad might lose some weight. He could easily lose 50 pounds."

"That would be good - then, the next time he falls on your mom, he won't do as much damage."

Primo rolled his eyes.

Primo said that Sly was reviewing all his meds with the doc.

"He has two Cialis prescriptions!"


"One is a low dose he takes every day to help him urinate. It sure works - he pees all the time. The other is on demand."

"Wait. Are he and your mom even - Stop. Wait. Never mind. I do not want to know. But I do not understand how a frail, malnourished woman who has COPD could participate."

"He pees all the time" (and here we had a discussion about why someone would take Cialis to pee). "He had an MRI today. He was stuck in the machine for an hour and really had to go. But rather than go as soon as he got out, he changed back into his own clothes."


"And then had to go so bad, he peed in his pants. I do not understand how he could not have held it until he got to a bathroom."

I winced. I do not like Sly at all but this is more humiliation than anyone needs. "Sweetie, your dad is super proud. I expect that he absolutely could not control himself. You know he was just mortified."

Primo sighed. "I guess. I could have held it in. Maybe he does not need to be taking Cialis every day."

"Maybe not."

"So Jack took him to the MRI and they were going to visit my mom after, but couldn't because my dad's pants were wet."

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