My dad is staying with us for his annual two-week visit. While my man and I work all day and my daughter is in preschool, my father basically has his run of the house. He did not want to rent a car, so he is stuck either surfing the internet or watching television. I can tell that he is growing tired of this routine as evidenced by the five or so phone calls I received from him yesterday. One phone call was filled with his questions about how to use the television and cable box. Apparently, he somehow turned the cable box off, but was convinced that it was not him who couldn’t figure it out, but that there was something wrong with the cable. I told him to go for a walk and we would look at it when I got home. Well, he couldn’t wait.
He walked down the street and found a cable van parked in someone’s driveway. He waited until the cable guy walked out of the house and asked him to come over to our house and look at our cable. My dad says, “I did a good deed. He’s going to be here in five minutes.” I told him “No, dad, there’s nothing wrong with the cable. Don’t let this guy into our house when we’re not there.” Do you think he listened? Of course not! I call my man who was just as upset as I was at the situation and I decided to call my dad back to make sure that he’s not letting a perfect stranger into our home when we’re not there. He didn’t even know if the cable company this guy works for was the one we use.
“He’s here right now looking at it,” my dad informs me. “What?” I exclaim. “Absolutely not! He needs to leave right now,” I so eloquently yell in my office. I hope that none of my coworkers, or god forbid, my boss hears me. Apparently, the cable guy heard my urgent pleas on the phone and said, “I was never here,” slipping out the back door. He could certainly get in a decent amount of trouble for entering a home without the home owner’s presence or permission. ”So what did he do?” I ask my dad. “He turned the cable box back on for me,” my dad says proudly. I fight the urge to yell at my dad for something I already told him.
While this scenario seems harmless enough, it caused me enough stress that I raised my voice, something I do not like doing. While I want to enjoy my dad’s visit because I only see him once a year, I feel as if he makes it virtually impossible to do so. I wonder if the animal kingdom has it right. I’m pretty sure that when an animal has babies that after a certain point they go their separate ways and do not continue to associate with one another for the duration of their lives. Maybe humans should be this way too. Why is it that we stay connected with our parents and extended family long after we are fully grown? For some families, it is nice and comforting to do this, but for others, we might be better off following the examples of animals and part ways after a certain point.