In my country, men get 3 months off work with 80% pay. Roughly. Rather good eh? So the state pays me to be with my one year old daughter. It’s a once in a lifetime thing for me. I have worked since I was 18 – except for one year where I focused on being a student only. It’s a whole new ballgame for me. I can easily understand why people want to stay at home and do little – because that way you create something out of nothing and you keep yourself busy. Well, that’s another story.
I am halfway into my paternity leave now, and it’s been more than interesting.
It started off fine, but after one week I started to develop allergies. I have always been allergic, but I have barely noticed the past years and this was off season. It caught me off guard totally, and it didn’t really help that my girlfriend thought I only had a cold. On top of that I got some kind of virus on my lungs, so I have been breathing in asthma medication like never before. To finish off my health first, I continued to cough and feel shabby until like a week ago. By then I had seen my doctor several times and gotten new prescriptions for more allergy medications. Something happened to my allergies one week into my leave, and I am now taking allergy meds every day alongside the odd inhaler (I did lots more a month ago, believe me). And you know what, my throat is sore again now. I was barely back to my old self and now I get another cold. I will go through this entire duration of my leave halfways sick. My lungs still hurt from coughing so much from that goddamn virus.
My father nearly died. In September they discovered a tumor on one of his kidneys. They decided to take away all of the kidney, and into surgery he went a week ago. He was unlucky, and the tumor had grown onto his colon. The first surgery was botched. When they took out the kidney they ruptured his colon in the process without knowing. Back from surgery, he was rather quickly poisoned by intake of food and water. A very serious condition which needs immediate surgery. My mom was called up by a surgeon informing her of what went down. I called her in the middle of all of this without knowing the state of affairs, and she told me. She was extremely upset. I immediately walked outside for some fresh air. Walking alongside the small river, I stopped somewhere and cried before I walked onwards and collected a few ordered bottles of beer from the mall. My father survived the second surgery, but is now in a very sorry state. I don’t know how close he was to dying, but I have a feeling it was too close. I talked to him today and offered him a few magazines to read. He said he was so tired he had no interest in it. When my brother and cousing visited yesterday, he nodded off when they were there. I saw him on Saturday, and it shocked me how much he looked like his mother from when she was ill during her last years. He wasn’t really the man and dad I used to know any longer – not in that condition. I can only hope he will be fully back to his own self within a month or more.
My mother in law came home to her house on Monday to find it had been turned upside down by a burglar. She was of course scared shitless, and this didn’t do much to help her already massive anxiety. I went straigh on the case, made phone calls, talked to the police, called her security alarm company and so on. Her veranda door lock has been broken for years, and she haven’t used her alarm in years either. Well, being that sloppy with your affairs came back to bite her massively. I mean, no one deserves a burglar, but when you can’t even bother to fix the lock on a veranda door…
Anyway, nothing was stolen. While I don’t know who did it just yet, he had turned the bedrooms upside down taking all her clothes out and so on. He also had a knack for underwear and had collected several of those into a pile in the bathroom. It couldn’t have been worse. It would have been better if it was just some silly Eastern European robbers making their rounds. I went online and managed to track down a drugged out guy visiting several houses on his way south during the night. He had also been caught on tape. It’s more than likely this is the guy who broke in – sorry – walked in the veranda door and screwed the bedrooms up royally. The idiot left his cell phone in the house though, so if the police actually manages to lift a finger we will know soon enough. All of this detective work thanks to me. My mother in law is still sleeping here – a week after the incident and even after 99% knowing for sure who did it – a random drug addict. She have barely started to tidy up. God knows how long this will take. My God what a nightmare. In the middle of all this there’s me, screaming on the inside for some privacy. Just an hour ago I found myself just staying in the bathroom a few minutes longer than I had to, just to feel the quietness. Tomorrow I’m going to my mom, I’m taking Emma with me so she can be with my mom and I will just lay on her sofa. That’s what I will do alright.
This has been some paternity leave you know. I had no clue it was this bad to stay home. I want to go back to work almost, maybe all of this other shit will stop happening that way.
I’m tired. My throat is sore, my mother in law is in the living room watching TV, and I want to go to bed.