A few days later I received a drunken call from Mort at three in the morning. He had been staying at some sort of a ‘half-way’ house and had sliced open his foot while climbing a fence. Apparently badly, to the bone. I didn’t care in normal hours and I cared even less at 3am.
The next day I got a call from a nurse at the public hospital asking for Mort’s whereabouts. He had gotten checked into the hospital and he was scheduled for surgery on his foot that day. He had been ranting about leaving behind his backpack at the halfway house and then disappeared. Doc did some investigating and discovered that Mort had gone AWOL for several hours and turned back up at the hospital staggeringly drunk.
Elevating the craziness to alcohol induced injuries prompted me to go and meet with a family lawyer. Given the no-fault law I would be unable to apply for a divorce for a year (dated from his last day in the house), but I wanted to check out the possibility of applying for a restraining order and custody of the girls. The lawyer sat there with mouth agape listening to the diligently documented previous months events. She said in her 30 years of family law she had never heard of such a rapid deterioration of an alcoholic. Sure she had heard of similar events but not happening with such warp speed.
Doc had organised that Mort would be admitted to a rehabilitation centre as an in-patient in 4 days time. I was encouraged to go and see Mort in hospital and tell him of the plans. It wasn’t a fun visit.
I noticed that they had him in a room that had a monitoring camera. Clearly he had caused quite a stink, literally and figuratively, when he returned drunk before his foot surgery and they were keeping an eye on things.
I informed him that he was to turn up sober at the facility on Friday at 10am for admittance. I had to repeat it several times and write it on a piece of paper because he wouldn’t shut up asking why I wouldn’t let him back to the house. As I left I picked up my heavy purse and swung it over my shoulder accidentally hitting his bandaged up foot. He let out a pathetic yelp as I left the room and then he yelled out “how about saying your sorry.”
It took all my strength not to go back in that room and beat him senselessly with the crutch leaned up against the wall.