Thursday, March 20, 2008

zombie week

there is no emoticon or onomatopoetic word that could possibly convey my current level of exhaustion.

last Friday, we got the word that Dad's oral/jaw cancer is officially "incurable" and that it is growing. very slowly, but growing. Dad has lost at least half of his tongue and now it takes some effort to decipher what he's saying, but he is in good spirits, better spirits than i am. He's working drastically reduced hours at the barber shop, due to his arthritis, and is applying for disability benefits, which is good since CA law currently prevents Mom from getting any of his Social Security benefits. This is emotionally exhausting for me.

on Monday, our truly wonderful tenants (who had their first baby - Isabella Miranda - 9 days ago) called to inform us that the water heater was leaking steadily from the bottom. i ended up staying over there until 2 am, helping to drain the tank, sopping up water with junk towels (i think the more years one has been married and settled in one place, the more junk towels one accumulates) and getting a heated fan to help dry out the closet. Home Despot won the bidding war for heater + installation, so the heater was supposed to have been installed yesterday. Surprise! Our old heater was at least 10 years old (i'm guessing more like 15) and the wiring codes have been changed since then. so the installer won't install until we get new cabling installed. Soooo then the electrician says that to run a new ground cable from the heater to the circuit box will be a minimum of $900, plus the expense of replacing the drywall and patching the ceilings, and i was very close to sitting down and crying. i actually did cry, but managed to stay standing up.

at this point, Dan went to talk to our BIL David (they work together), who is an all-around good and extremely useful and smart guy. Seriously, they don't make them much better than David. David said he could come and look at the wiring, and if it was something he could handle, that he'd be happy to help us install a water heater. My Dad was also arming himself to come down this morning if all didn't go well last night, but Dan and David got it in last night and finished just before midnight.

But David ended up being our hero. I need to buy him some shining armor, or at least babysit his kids (5!!) so that he and Dan's sister can have a nice date. The whole thing ended up costing us around $400 (that includes the cancellation fee for the other installation). So David saved us approximately $1500 by being smart and generous with his time.

David, you rock!

5 comments:

Stephanie said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your dad. I love you and want to help in any way.

I'm glad things worked out well with the water heater. Aren't knowledgeable people with tools the best!

Beulahboy1 said...

Colleen,

I just got my haircut at your dad's place about three weeks ago and had been thinking of him. My dad and brother are in shock as neither of them were aware of what was going on when I told them a few weeks ago.

I am so sorry, and like Stephanie, if there is anything that my family or I can do (as we all live nearby to your folks) please let us know.

We love the Kinnicks, and I hate to know that you are going through this. Please let me know what you need as well.

Love,
Stephen

colleeeen said...

you two are getting me all teary-eyed. if i can think of ways my folks can be helped, i will let you know. Steph, just remember Pop in your prayers.

Stephen, maybe you should come over to meet me at their house sometime (i know you are super busy with school, but i'm usually there most Tuesdays). you always make everybody laugh and they haven't seen you in a long time.

Trisha said...

Colleen! I am so happy your blog is back up, but am so sad to hear about your dad. We just found out my dad has a rare form of cancer, too. So, I know how you feel. We don't know his prognosis yet as the final pathology hasn't come in. I am so srry, sweetie. I worked with cancer patients prior to the job I have now, so I have witnessed firsthand how hard this is on everyone involved. I wish you and your family the very best at this difficult time. (((Hugs))).

Beulahboy1 said...

Would love to meet you there anytime you want. This Tuesday unfortunately doesn't work as I have an afterhours workshop, and it would have to be in the early evening as I have class until 4.

let me know, please.

Stephen