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Monday, August 26, 2013


When my sister was here with my brother the other night she must have had trouble sleeping. Ben's moaning gets very loud. The nurse called and requested a sleep kit for her. It consists of a mask and earplugs. By the time it had gotten up to the floor, Stacey was asleep and the nurse wasn't going to wake her up just to give it to her.
When I got to the hospital it was given to me in case I wanted to try using it for the night.

When we were kids our family went camping a lot. When we went on vacations we were camping. Anytime there was a long weekend, we were camping. Inevitably, there would also be car problems. My dad drove a Chevy Corvair. It's engine was in the back instead of the front. I don't know why. Dad liked them though. Corvairs did not have a large enough engine to tow a camper trailer, but tow a camper trailer it did. When the car broke down, and  it always did, my dad would cuss at it and always blame this one set of mechanics that chained the oil once. It was always their fault because they did something to it to make it leak oil. It was never because a little corvair shouldn't be towing, well, anything.  

One trip we took down to Nauvoo, Illinois, was a rare time we didn't have engine trouble, but we still had car trouble. 

We had stumbled upon Nauvoo on a previous excursion. My dad was the stereotypical male driver. He would not ask for directions, he would not use a map. He KNEW where he was going. We got lost, A LOT!! Almost every time we got into the car to go somewhere new. 

We lived in Des Moines, Iowa, and we were going to Geode State park in south east Iowa. Somehow we ended up in Illinois. Now how my dad didn't notice us crossing the MISSISSIPPI, I'll never know. We ended up in Nauvoo. My mother, who was a big history buff, absolutely fell in love with the place, so we returned there many times. (Still getting lost most of the time. Dad KNEW how to get there damn it!)

This particular trip to Nauvoo it rained. It rained a lot. it rained hard! As a child, I didn't care. The state park had this wonderful playground that was right in the middle of a pine forest. You could play there in the hardest down pour and barely get wet at all. Ben would always push me on the swings and do underdoggies. (For those who might not know, an underdoggy is when the person pushing you on a swing would push you so high that they could run under you) Ben would swing him self as high as he could and jump out of the swing. He would fly through the air, arms and legs flaying around. I thought he was superman. It was at this playground that he encouraged me to jump from a swing for the first time. He wouldn't let me go very high to do it though. 

The day we were to head home Dad noticed that the car and the trailer had both sunk deeply into the rain soaked ground. Being a kid I thought it was a wonderful thing and that maybe we'd get to stay another day. Dad, had to be back at work the next day, you know the real world, that kids are so oblivious to, so get the car unstuck was the mission. 

My dad has an artificial leg, a WWII injury. It always came down to my mom in the driver seat, my dad pushing by the driver side door so he could give my mom "instructions", and my brother pushing at the back of the car. (Did you notice I said, always, yeah, this happened a lot, too) This particular time Stacey and I were in the car because it was still raining. At some point dad felt the car move just a bit and told my mom to floor it. She did. She stomped on the gas, and held it down. My brother, still in the back, got pummeled with mud and water! He was covered head to toe. He looked like a mud monster. My mom and dad were completely unaware of what was happening in the back. My sister and I were rolling around on the back seat howling with laughter. We got very angry looks from my mom and dad. Mom let off the gas and asked us what we thought was so funny. We pointed out the back window at Ben. My mom held back her laughter, Ben saw nothing funny at all in the situation. She scolded Stacey and I appropriately, and then went back to help Ben clean up. 

I looked at the sleep kit and put it aside. About nine o'clock Ben's moaning had stopped. He was quiet for a couple of hours. It freaked me out. I started wondering if he had slipped into a coma. The longer he stayed quiet, the harder it was to sleep.

The nurse came in to give Ben his bath. That didn't even rouse him. The nurse and I both started really worrying. Then she had to clean around his catheter, he moaned! I was never so happy to hear that moan. He moaned for a little while more while she finished his bath. He kept moaning after she was done. I drifted off to sleep.   

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