But apparently it’s true, and it’s no surprise since his father died of it, and he’s an alcoholic so all that booze probably just hastened it along. Plus he didn’t go to the doctor until he was passing blood because he’s such a damn fool. Not only is he a fool, but his wife is a few cards short a full deck as well, because she neglected to tell the surgeon that my father drinks himself into a stupor every night, and as a result he ended up in the emergency room the night before the surgery because he washed down his pre-op antibiotics with a bottle of scotch. She didn’t even tell the doctor until he’d been in the emergency room all night that he’d done that. The doctor was apparently PISSED. He delayed the surgery a day to let him recover from his stupidity. She still didn’t tell him, at that point, that my father is an alcoholic who’s going to wake up from surgery jonesing for some booze and lose his mind when he doesn’t get it. Maybe she wants him to die.
My sister said he woke up from surgery and started hallucinating (D.T.s, anyone?), pulled out his IV lines, tried to get out of bed, etc. They had to take him to the ICU and sedate him to get him to stop it. The surgeon finally asked my stupid stepmother if it was possible that he was suffering from alcohol withdrawal? She said oh sure, he drinks every single day. I just bet he wanted to slap the face right off of her. So they kept him sedated in the ICU until the worst of the withdrawal passed, but he still woke up with some pretty bad symptoms. My sister said he swears he’s stopped drinking, and I said yeah, I bet he did. The surgeon said if he’d known he wouldn’t have operated because there’s no point operating on an alcoholic with colon cancer.
My sister said to me, what did he think, that I was going to drop everything and fly there to take care of him when he told me he was sick? I know what she means. It’s funny, because as much as I just don’t have any feelings of love for him at all, and as much as I know that that is completely his fault, there is this little nagging guilt. I haven’t called him, and I won’t. But why the hell do *I* feel guilty for not having any feelings for him aside from disdain at this point, when he’s the one who’s caused his children and his sisters to say “Enough is enough, you’re too toxic to be a part of our lives.”?
I sit here and wonder how I’ll feel if he dies. I honestly don’t know if I’d even go to his funeral. Does that sound cold? I can’t help it. He’s wasted his entire life being a horrible human being, and he tried to drag us down with him. I know that there might be a lot of hurt underlying why he turned out the way he did, but I also know this from all the hurt he heaped on me: what happens to us is not our excuse for hurting other people. When you’re grown, you have to look back and find a way to put it behind you, and grow beyond it. You can’t take it and spew it out in a big plume of hatred and filth over the people that you’re supposed to take care of and love. If you do, well, you end up like my father. Sick and possibly dying, with four grown children who don’t want to have anything to do with you. Drinking yourself to death because you can’t stand to be sober and consider why you’ve done the things you’ve done. I just can’t think of too many things sadder than that.
I would wish for him that this is a big enough catastrophe that he takes an honest look at his life and tries to make it something good before he dies. I just don’t have any faith that he has the slightest ability to do that.