Day three, Thursday, dawned too early for Dad. The anticipation of his early morning rendezvous with the endodontist created more than a little anxiety as he washed and dressed. Breakfast was a very brief interlude—an English muffin and some coffee, and then we were out the door in the frigid morning air.
Our agenda for the day would depend on how much pain he experienced after his root canal. I sat in the waiting room expecting a lengthy wait (and a little nap), but was surprised when after only half an hour, the dental assistant came out to get me. We listened to her instructions, made another appointment, paid the bill and were off, all within an hour after our arrival. Stopping at the pharmacy to pick up some antibiotics for the infection, Dad wanted to buy some oatmeal, in case his tooth hurt too much to chew anything, but he couldn’t decide what to get. I made a command decision and got the variety pack. Sometimes, you just have to do it.
Not long after arriving home, the anesthetic began to wear off. He followed doctor’s orders, taking two extra-strength Tylenol, and waited for the pain to begin. And waited and waited. By lunchtime, he was still feeling fine, as though he hadn’t had his mouth pried open for half an hour with some guy’s fingers in there. This was a very good thing, since a friend was bringing lunch for us. He ate soup and some of the pasta leftovers from dinner the previous night, visited for a while, and then went in to take a long nap, expecting to awaken with an aching tooth.
While he slept, I worked frantically to complete the Powerpoint presentation due for a Friday event. Two hours later, as I put the finishing touches on the 64-page document, he was still asleep. I figured he must need it, and I needed some down time, myself. I read for a little while before thinking about dinner. We had discussed having Chinese take-out, but not knowing how his tooth would feel, I hesitated to order. When Dad finally awakened, not only was his tooth fine, but he was hungry. My roomie had offered to pick up our order and join us for dinner. He and Dad always get along well, and especially after he told us everything he’d accomplished for the day, including a lot of household chores. He even scooped the litter boxes and cleaned the bathroom! (Perfect housemate.)
Thursday evening was a relaxed, quiet time. Dad turned in early, I wrote and read until well after midnight, and then I crashed, but not before our little nighttime glasses, TV, goodnight kiss ritual. He always smiles, even when he’s still asleep. Friday would be a calm, uneventful day for Dad, but with seven loads of laundry and cleaning up, sorting and putting away a year’s accumulation of “stuff” in the kitchen and living room in preparation for Saturday afternoon’s open house, I had my work cut out for me. I slept like a rock for four hours, thinking, as I drifted off to sleep, how lucky I am to have this time with my “other” dad. He’s a real peach.