By TheOttawacker

Tournament on a day from hell

We had decided to be back from our trip by today as Ottawacker Jr. had committed to playing in a tournament. It turned out the tournament was only two matches and, given the results, it was probably not worth it. The first game ended in a 13-2 shellacking (Ottawacker Jr. was in goal for the first half and let five in), and the second ended in a 2-2 draw, with the equalizer being conceded in a comical way off someone's arse cheeks with the last touch of the game. Still, it was worth it to reinforce to O. Jr.  how you have to honour commitments you have made.

I had missed the first game as I was slaving away in the basement to make it ready for our guests. I alluded during the first batch of backblips how there had been a number of tribulations during the week. This was the first of which we learned.

Mrs. Ottawacker's nephew's son, aged 17, had reported symptoms of a stroke earlier in the week. He lives up north in a small town, the hospital of which is discovering the wisdom of voting Conservative. Beds are closed and staff are leaving. In short, they deduced it wasn't a stroke, so sent him home and told him to come back the following morning to see a doctor. This he did. The doctor was worried enough to get him an immediate MRI scan, and then worried enough after that to make a call to the medical planes and have him flown that very morning to Ottawa for immediate surgery. It transpires that he had a brain tumour. Once the surgery was complete, they managed to remove 95% of the tumour, which had thankfully been attacking the lining of the brain and not the brain itself, and it filled a big cup. Quite how the boy had been managing until then is a mystery.

Still, 48 hours post-operation he was due for discharge, and we had offered our basement suite as a place for him and his mother to stay. Once, of course, I had removed all the shite I had spread out all over it, made up the bed, dusted, passed the vacuum cleaner, and Mrs. Ottawacker had cleaned the shower room and the... etc. etc.

We managed to get it done, and while waiting, I went to watch the second game, saw 15 minute highlights of Liverpool's game against Fulham, and then set about the list of messages I had received. Not to wallow in misery, but these included:
 - calling a friend who had just had an operation for bowel cancer (successful, we think)
 - dealing with my sister, who was having a massive fight with my brother about cleaning out the family home, which is due to go up for sale very soon
 - finding out that my family home was due to go up for sale very soon
 - calling my brother, who was having ... etc., and whose idea of staging had apparently been to hire big skips and to empty the contents of the house into them
 - being told that my stepmother had just gone into rehab for the next six weeks
 - also being told that my uncle had gone into hospital and was showing signs of dementia
 - in the middle of this, receiving a message from a friend out west whose best friend had been murdered the previous evening in a random attack.

They were my messages. So I set about making the calls, managing to pour oil onto troubled water, correct what misinformation was circulating about various issues, do the laundry, clear my CDs off the dining room table, dole out what support/comfort I could.

Towards the end of the afternoon, we found out that Mrs. Ottawacker's nephew's son (N.S.) and his mum were only coming the next day (issues with discharging), so I went to the LCBO, bought a number of beers, and proceeded to drink them all while proclaiming "woe is me" to whomever wanted to listen. (It was nobody.)

There was, of course, good news as well. In addition to my friend's bowel cancer going well, it seems the brain surgery had also been relatively successful, and Mrs. O's N.S. was moving about, albeit hesitantly. The reported house issues had, in fact, not taken place as recorded on messages, with only the garage being gutted into skips. My uncle's dementia might be down to B12 deficiencies - or the morphine treatment for the chronic back issues he has recently been having. My stepsister was also very positive about the rehab opportunity for my stepmother. So definite silver linings there. But what you can't fix, you have to come to terms with... and there is a great deal of that in there too.


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