Ten days after my husband left, our son broke his arm. I’m not saying I blame the ghost… I’m just sayin’…
Anyway, he broke his right elbow clean off. It wasn’t a compound fracture, but his elbow was just hanging there, detached from the humerus, the radius and the ulna. I threw everyone in the car, including the dog who simply could not be left home alone because she was terrified, and we rushed to the hospital.
Fortunately the orthopedist managed to set the bones without surgery. But as you can imagine I was feeling a might overwhelmed – between this accident, three kids, no sleep, a ghost…
I’d already had to bring the baby into my room at night. Think about it. Just think about it. She was right across the hall from me, and I kept both bedroom doors open, but still I left a baby monitor in her room.
The instant I heard a male voice muttering into that baby monitor I whisked that child out of her crib and moved her into my bed and ditched those baby monitors.
I was not a contented housefrau.
I spoke with my husband every day. I knew he couldn’t come back up to Utah, but still I asked. Even if I there hadn’t been a ghost in the house this was an awful lot to handle on my own.
I needed help. Out of desperation I called my aunt. My mom doesn’t travel by herself, but I had an aunt who loved to travel. She was happy to fly to Utah to stay with me for a week. I didn’t tell her about the ghost.
The Salt Lake City airport was eighty miles from our house. Of course I took all the kids with me when I drove to meet her plane, but I left the dog at home. The yard wasn’t fenced and I was afraid the dog would break a rope and run off, or maybe hang herself with a little help from her ghostly nemesis. I decided the safest place to leave her was in the kitchen. I closed both sliding doors so she couldn’t go anywhere other than the kitchen and the laundry room.
And then I prayed.
The kids were good in the car. In fact the kids were great in the car. It seemed like the only time we were all relaxed and happy was when we were away from that stinkin’ house.
I met my aunt and we headed back. As soon as I pulled the car into the driveway the garage door opened. Yeah.
My aunt said, “That’s a neat trick.”
My son stated the obvious, “It does that all the time, opens by itself.”
So I got everyone out of their car seats, retrieved my aunt’s suitcase from the trunk, and opened the door to the laundry room, expecting the dog to come flying into the garage.
No dog. Empty kitchen. Sliding doors still closed. Panic. My heart nearly stopped. What had the son of a bitch done with my dog?
I set the suitcase down, asked my aunt to hold the baby and wait in the garage with the kids. I opened one of the sliding doors and called for the dog. She answered with a frantic bark, a distant bark. It came from the basement.
I did not want to go down there. I was scared to death, but I had to rescue my dog. I called her name as I tiptoed down the stairs leading to the basement. She kept barking. It was nearly a screech. I reached the bottom of the stairs. The barking came from behind the closed door to the big, empty, cavernous workshop.
I turned the knob and pushed on the door. It wouldn’t open. I could hear the dog on the other side, scratching frantically, trying to get out. I pushed with all my strength. Nothing. It was a stupid plywood door and it wouldn’t budge.
By now I was totally panicked, but I reminded myself that my aunt was upstairs with my kids and I needed to keep it together. And I was pissed.
“You listen to me, ghost. Give me my dog. Give me my dog. Open. This. Door. Now. Or. Else.”
I turned the handle. The door opened so fast I nearly fell on my face. The dog hurtled past me and raced up the stairs, leaving a trail of you-don’t-want-to-know-what everywhere.
Even now I still get angry and upset. I stepped into the workshop. I said something I shouldn’t have said because I made things worse, but I said it anyway.
“You want a fight? Is that what you want? Because you’ve got it. Bring it, asshole. Bring it.”
In retrospect a big mistake, but nobody messes with my dog.
Tomorrow: Oh No You Di’nt…