Being me is one of those things. There are things that only happen to me that make me wonder if there is something attached to me from birth that solicits these moments in time from the universe. After all, if you’ve never had to have a conversation with your naked godfather then it must be me right?
My mother has lived in this home for over 30 years. Next door to us my godparents also live. There wasn’t a ceremony in my youth, it is just one of those moments where you live with and grow close to someone long enough to place a commemorative title on them because they are special to you.
There is a certain comfort that comes with being surrounded by those who’ve known you since childhood. You get to be more of your authentic self. You get to skip and hop down memory lane to be reminded of the ‘good times’ in your life when your present tosses you a curve ball. There is also a danger in being close to your neighbors. Sometimes they will talk to you without pants.
My godfather Billy had a stroke about 17 years ago. He was my training wheels for Bonnie. It was his stroke that taught me things that needed to happen to care for Bonnie when hers came in 2007. I am thankful for that training, and the support that my godmother Marion gives me. We are often shoulders for one another to vent or cry. We live a similar life.
When my godmother called yesterday morning she asked for a simple favor, could I look in on Billy while she went out for a few hours. I was happy to do that small favor for her. Our lives can be challenging, and caring for an impaired loved one takes a lot out of you. It wasn’t a hard thing to do, just pop in and make sure he wasn’t trying to cook or re-wire the electric in the house.
One of the more difficult things to navigate in caring for your impaired loved one is allowing them to preserve their dignity while caring for them. It is a tight rope walk and more often than not you fall. For the adult living in an impaired body, it is a struggle for your mind to work like it always has, yet your body does not respond in kind.
My first check on my godfather yesterday found the downstairs empty. I wasn’t worried. I’d been warned that he might be doing his grooming routine. When I heard the water running upstairs I quietly tip toed back out of the house. Part of that maintaining dignity thing.
My second trip went a little sideways. It was about 12:45 and when I went into the house once more the downstairs was empty. I didn’t hear him upstairs so I decided to check on him. I thought perhaps he’d decided to nap, and I expected to find him snoring quietly. As I ascended the stairs I heard his television. As I walked up the hall I heard the TV change channels. Okay he’s up so just say hi, ask if he needs anything and move along.
When I called out to him he said hi and told me to come on in.
When I get to the door he’s sitting on the side of his bed with a remote in hand naked as the day he was born. Not even a pair of socks on.
I went blind at that moment. I felt the scales form over my eyes like a reverse biblical Paul, or Saul or whatever his name was.
He is talking and saying good morning and asking how are mom and Clyde and I am trying not to have a seizure after being forced to see my 80+ year old godfather naked. Talk about non consent!
I think I answered his questions. I vaguely recalled saying something along the line of coming back to help him make lunch.
One of the fortunate things about 30+ year relationships is you get to know their house almost as well as you know your own. In my blindness I was able to descend the steps, and get out the front door because their house is identical to ours. I followed the sounds of Elmo in Grouchland to my own home.
I got to my kitchen and used my earbuds and Siri to call my little one and shared the account with her. Her response?…. if he don’t wanna wear pants he don’t wanna wear pants leave him alone.
On a level I get it. I hope myself to be old enough one day to not wear pants and not give a shit about not wearing pants. I have no balls to hang loose and giggle but I get it.
There really is a certain freedom that comes with age I hope to obtain. I will relish the moments and the discomfort it gives others… I am a sadist after all.
In the meantime…. I saw my godfather without pants. And he talked to me like he was fully clothed and it was normal.
There is no coming back from that really. You just kind of have to deal and hope that it won’t take up your entire hour of therapy for the next 6 weeks.
I’ve got a date with my boyfriend upcoming and he’s gonna want to take his pants off. I am hoping that I don’t have a PTSD moment when that happens.
I am also hoping that the all pants all the time rule I’ve now imposed on my household takes.
I’ve seen enough ass for the year 2014, and I don’t want to see anymore.
Aphrodite Brown Editor’s note: My little one read this and called to let me know that my spelling was off in places. She looks out for me like that. My apologies constant reader. In my defense, I am typing this while still blind and even though I took typing classes sometimes shit happens. She also was so sweet and loving and kind to remind me that she laughed at me. She also took the opportunity to laugh at me again. I love her, I really do. I am also gonna beat her for that. Fear not…she will like it. I just hope that my sight has returned by then so I hit her in the “right” spot.