The Badante Chronicles: Who ya callin’ a fool?

A badante (caregiver), or to be more specific, badante convivente (live-in caregiver) is the logical (and most affordable) alternative to placing an elderly parent in a nursing home. With the concerns of Covid-19, I suggested to my husband that he take an extended leave from work to look after his aging father. At nearly 6 months of being the primary caregiver, he hasn’t yet regretted making that decision.

It’s a blessing that ‘Pops’ is not gravely ill and still has most of his marbles. But his inability to stand or walk or even feed himself means that he needs assistance in more ways than I care to mention. Some days are good for all of us, others not so much, and keeping sane is often found in the smallest of moments.


Saturday: bath day. I was doing some standing elbow-to-knee stretches when out of the blue, my father-in-law says (in Italian) “Why are you doing that? You look like a fool!” My immediate thought was that he should be the one to talk — there he was, buck naked in his shower commode chair with nothing but a towel around his shoulders. I ignored him.

My husband aka the MotH wasn’t having any of that sass, and in a voice often reserved for a petulant child, he said, “That is my wife! Therefore she is your daughter-in-law and she is not a fool!”


At times my husband may fly off the handle (I know it must have something to do with family dynamics) but I never do. I just took great joy in dressing Pops in a new t-shirt that says exactly how I feel about him sometimes.

6 thoughts on “The Badante Chronicles: Who ya callin’ a fool?

  1. Julia

    WordPress decided not to show me your new post. I unfollowed you and refollowed you. I hope that fixes it!
    It is good you can keep your cool. I know it is hard when a loved one can no longer take care of themselves. I think do the t-shirt was very funny.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Rowena Post author

      WordPress has a hiccup every now and then but it must not help that I also refuse to transition to the new style of ‘block posting’ (really, if it ain’t broken, why fix it?).

      I’m glad you saw humor in that t-shirt. We have already called him that to his face in italian (joking of course, he calls us sneaky like a cat), so I figured a t-shirt wouldn’t hurt! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
  2. kat

    Glad you both are able to take care of FIL. it is definitely hard work. give yourselves some respite too. sending you guys lots of virtual hugs.

    Like

    Reply
    1. Rowena Post author

      The one good, no, great thing going for us is that we have a team: MotH’s brother does the bureaucratic stuff (taking care of anything financial) while MotH takes care of the practical things (thank goodness he’s around when something breaks, like the washing machine!). Vi does much of the actual caregiving (feeding and being with Pops during his waking hours) during her shift, and I take care of the odds and ends (shopping list, laundry and the yard!).

      Like

      Reply
    1. Rowena Post author

      Ha! That shirt has his name written all over it. My husband and I are a good team, and the motto is always “Work smarter, not harder!”

      Thank you for the encouragement!

      Like

      Reply

No need to fill in the blanks, but comments are moderated

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.