Friday, September 26, 2008

Welcome back my friends, to the show that never ends

Here's where I'm at these days:

I've been a suck-ass blogger. Instead, I've been manhandling (womanhandling?) my mother's living situation into something that might make it possible for her to survive the winter. Unfortunately, that also puts us both into "the system". I'm becoming a connoisseur of social workers, bureaucrats, political appointees, and lackeys of every stripe. As much as I tell myself that my tax dollars pay their salaries, when I say "Jump!" they say, "Of course. But first, we'll need you to fill out these 90 forms, and provide 100 kind of unattainable documentation. Then there will be a series of interviews determining your eligibility to request a jump. You'll receive a letter in the mail in 6 to 8 weeks, outlining your rights and responsibilities with regard to your jumping request. If you fail to sign and return the documents included within 72 hours, it will invalidate your jumping request and you will be considered ineligible to petition for another jump for 12 months. Have a nice day."

Or my other favorite: "I know it says on the door that we're the Department of Jumping, but we just collect the requests and record the actuarial data. Actual requests for jumping are processed at our office in Springfield. A caseworker has been assigned to evaluate your mother's jumping status, however unless you have documentation that states that your mother is dead now or plans to become dead in the next 3-5 business days, we can't begin to process her request for at least six months, as there are many more qualified people ahead of her who have already died. Have a nice day."

I, who hates the phone more than just about anything (except my mother, who stubbornly refuses to join the ranks of the dead no matter how much I encourage her), have been on the phone a lot lately. Rep. David Phelps' personal assistant is my new best friend. If I survive the next 6 months I plan to offer her sexual favors in exchange for favorable legislation on the Elder Self-Neglect bill.

So friends, fellow bloggers, and lurkers hoping for lurid descriptions of hot girl-on-girl action (and you know who you are), prepare for a winter of hand-wringing angst intermixed with explosive filial frustration. Or a tragic gun accident, perhaps a novice deer hunter mistaking a tiny-headed elderly woman for a 12 point buck. A daughter can dream, can't she?


Kwach said...

And please, before any of you are tempted to post some Hallmark-esque comment about how grateful Ev will someday be for having had this opportunity to share her mother's Golden Years, may I just say that Ev has a brand new computer and I'd really hate to see her have to haul it out of the house, heave it off the back deck, drag it down the hill and take a chainsaw to it.

So just don't. If your particular mother was a blessing, good on ya.

Pat said...

Poor baby,
I feel for you. I know "the system", and it is worse than sucking on your son's gym clothes that have stayed in his locker all year.
I am also sorry that you have a mother like that. I can't say that mine is the same.My mother went in a cloistered convent over 20 years ago, so, I guess I am lucky.
But, it is still good to hear from you both. Hugs hugs and more hugs.

Kwach said...

A convent is good. A convent where you can't own anything is even better.

I was lucky. My mother merely suffered from dementia, paranoia and a mean temperament.

xup said...

I'm just happy ya'll have blogged again. Keeping up with your blogging is far more important than any guilt-assuaging family responsiblities. Where are your priorities? Who's your REAL family here, anyway???

Cedar said...

Pat that was gross.

Ev maybe you and someone else got switched at birth.

Sharon said...

Bless your heart...

We're just dealing with dementia with Miss A's mom and it's bad enough. We've actually been quite lucky so far thanks to brilliant manipulation on Miss A's part.

We'll keep you in our thoughts. And do keep writing. It's good therapy.

And Pat's convent suggestion is fantastic. I'll have to talk to my own mother about that one. I wonder if I could find a monastery to take my father. He'd get kicked out for swearing though. Hmm...

Jazz said...

Wow. A cloistered convent. Every daughter's dream!

Oh and for the record, despite that I feel for you, the situation makes for brilliant blogging!

Marl said...

since i've become a state employee, i've learned that the secret hope of social services workers is that people give up & stop jumping through the hoops.

every one of them sincerely wants to help, but the never-ending bureaucracy turns them into paper shufflers, rather than do-gooders. it's not necessarily the state/local programs that require mountains of paperwork - it's the fucking feds, from whom the vast majority of funding derives, and for whom the mountain of paperwork is demanded.

stick with it - as painful as it might be. otherwise, you'll stay at the bottom of the lists, and never EVER get your mom the assistance she really needs.

Angie said...

Okay, I just pissed myself laughing at this post. I cannot imagine trying to deal with these fucked up government agencies....enough to make you nuts.

As far as the 'girl-on-girl action' - how did you know?? Was I that obvious? haha

Great post.