This land is your land…

Endless frustrations from The Trailer Park last week – regarding Dad’s  tenor sax – which is still MIA – as well as day-to-day operations.  It’s a good thing i’m currently 2500 miles away.  I’m two Hershey Bars shy of unleashing fire and brimstone.

Last Sunday, i stopped by Mom’s to take her out to lunch, and also do some hands-on digging through the decades of life-shrapnel that clutters her house.  No luck finding the saxophone, but that’s an evolving story for another day.

Then there was this little slice of the good life…

After the ice and snow from Tuesday the previous week, i discovered Mom’s driveway still buried.  She’d put some ice-melting chemicals down, to no avail.  There was a path through the snow in her yard out to the mailbox, where she’d walked daily to get the mail and newspaper all week.

She’s 80, walks with a cane.  And has absolutely no fucking business walking on ice and snow.  Oh, and have i mentioned that my niece, DQ, her husband and 14 year old daughter live NEXT DOOR? 

After lunch, i grabbed a shovel, and with the help of some unexpected sunshine, beat through the ice, clearing the driveway.  If the lazy, unemployed DQ couldn’t shovel, or send her hard-working husband over to dig it out, she could have AT LEAST* brought in the mail/paper.  Or sent her daughter over to do it since school was out all week…

Returning inside, i found several light bulbs out – and replaced them.  i’m thinking Mom really doesn’t need to be climbing the stepladder to replace light bulbs, either. 

Trying to keep my head from exploding manage my anger, i shared my frustrations with Mom.  DQ refuses to work so she can stay home and take care of Mom and the 16 month old spawn baby, DQ, III.  Last year, DQ used an emotional blackmail technique, telling Mom that she’ll move some day and have to leave her behind – thus convincing Mom to buy 17 acres in the country.  Mom has also applied for a construction loan so DQ and her husband can build a house, complete with “mother-in-law” apartment for Mom. 

Given that the rest of us aren’t lining up to take care of Mom, and that she’s militant about not moving to an assisted living apartment (which she sees as the first step toward a nursing home), it seemed a sound approach to helping Mom maintain a reasonable quality of life**.  The plan was that Mom would pay for her square footage, and then DQ and BJ would make payments on what they build for themselves.

Works well in theory…  Unfortunately, DQ’s exponentially expanding waistline sense of entitlement drove “requirements creep”, doubling the amount of square footage from the original plan, and the loan application is in limbo.  Nothing is happening, but Mom now owns 17 wooded acres.  Mom explained that she’s frustrated, too, feeling that she has no options… saying that it seems that house will never get built. 

Mom:  I don’t know what else to do – I think I’m stuck here.

daisyfae:  That land is yours, still has value, and can be sold.  We can take the money from that, gut this place, and make it easily accessible and very comfortable for you.  You’ll need to let folks come in and help you, though, but we can get this place fixed up quite nicely for what you spent on that land!  New kitchen, new bathroom…

Mom: Oh, I just figured i’d give DQ the land…

daisyfae:  Why?  For shoveling your fucking driveway?

Brains... if we only had some brains...

Brains... if we only had some brains...

* To her credit, she had been sending over food a few times during the bad weather to make sure mom had decent things to eat.  And she calls daily…  DQ, Jr apparently tried to help clear some of the snow.  With my 80 year old mother…  UGH!

** Despite the obvious benefit to DQ of getting a brand new house built, on 17 wooded acres, and ending up with just a portion of the mortgage, she DOES take care of most of Mom’s basic needs.  To quote Joni Mitchell (“shadows and light”), “The perils of benefactors…. The blessings of parasites…”.   DQ has historically been very clever at manipulation of Mom’s resources, but at the same time, provides much needed support.  So i stand watch.  To make sure the balance doesn’t go too far out of whack…

11 thoughts on “This land is your land…

  1. Wow, that is really scary for you, I’m sure. I would hate to have my mom taken advantage of like that. I guess I’d have to get in DQ’s face and that may or may not help out mama. What a hard thing to deal with, especially from far away, huh?

    My heart goes out to both of you.


  2. Bb – that’s the real reason i’m out here… flogging my familial issues here in the ether… (sigh)

    uncle keith – she stands to get 1/5 of mom’s estate already. the land (plus mom’s portion of a moderately sized house) would be just a bit more than that. There would be inheritance taxes on that – which she couldn’t afford to pay… (double sigh)

    KJ – Mom wants peace and harmony, and gets nervous when i get spun up because she’s waiting for the can o’ whup ass to be released on the others… but i’m trying to finesse things…

    silverstar – distance. sometimes it’s your best friend…. will hope you can stay in a mellow bubble when you get to CO to deal with your pack…

    annie – DQ really does handle the daily annoyances, but it’s the way she’s pulling the blackmail that makes me crazy….

    alex – you’re my hero! great plan! gotta dig up someone in the fam with 1/8 native american blood then we’re good to go!

    nursemyra – mom has choices, but she refuses to leave the house. that’s the limiting factor that drives this. so i have to work from that… while trying to get her to visit some of her friends in the nice assisted living apartments…

  3. Family. *shakes head*. One day I’ll blog about Hitler-in-Drag, aka my grandmother. She’s a live one. And when the money gets in there….ai curumba!

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