I have wanted to get back to writing for a while now. I go through spells when I feel like I have lots to say…spells when I feel overwhelmed so that I feel like I have no time to say anything…spells when I feel like nothing I would have to say would be worth reading…spells when I desperately want to sit down and write, but simply feel too exhausted to do so. Suffice it to say, I have missed the blog and would think of it often and fondly, as “something I will get back to…eventually.” The last 5 months of my life have fallen into all those categories at one time or another and one description does not do it total justice. I think I’m back…for now.
It has been 5 months since Emma’s injury. May 5, 2011. The snap heard round the world, as I like to say. It has been 4 months since her surgery to repair her broken tibia and fibula. It has been 3 weeks since she started physical therapy to help her regain the strength and range of motion in her leg. It has been 4 days now that she has been “crutch-free”. May I add here a hearty PRAISE THE LORD!! And a WOOT WOOT!!
You might hear me refer to Emma as my screwed up child, now that she carries with her 2 plates and 17 screws in her left leg. <har har> You might hear me call it her bionic leg. <snort snort>Emma prefers that I do not refer to it at all as she tries to come to terms with the permanent reminder of her ordeal that comes in the form of 2 still-healing scars on her leg; not exactly a 13 year old’s idea of “I feel pretty…oh, so pretty” as Maria sang in Westside Story.
We have seen summer blend into fall as Emma has pressed on through her healing process. We have pressed on through with the highs and lows of humor and pity parties. But we have pressed on by the Grace of God. To say I am proud of her would be a gross understatement. To say she has shown me perseverance in its truest sense would be closer to the truth. She is a remarkable young woman…and I have seen her mature in ways that have impressed me a great deal. Now, don’t be thinking she is some perfect angel, though she is pretty awesome…she has had her not-so-great moments, but heck!, haven’t we all? <points to self> But the way she has managed these last months has been nothing short of remarkable.
A few things I have learned and experienced over the last few months and would like to share:
- I got a new understanding of the often thrown around, yet always true, statement “God is in control.” It is no cliché, my friends! The old Steven Curtis Chapman song which says, “God is God and I am not” comes to mind here. There is an excellent reason why God is God and I am not; basically, I do not know what in the heck I am doing here on this earth, so I am glad He does.
- If your doctor and the DMV approve you for a handicapped parking placard, by all means, USE that sucker! Do not feel guilty about it!
- Watching medical people wheel your baby away from you, knowing that they are taking her to cut her open is an indescribably scary thing. (See number 1 for how I managed to get through that one.)
- Having the operating room staff call you 3 times while they are cutting on your baby to say she is doing fine, is a soothing balm.
- My people (all those my family and I love, and who love us) are SO awesome and supportive and I love you all.
- Those who live every day in a wheelchair, on crutches or other assistive devices, in chronic pain or in any other sort of permanently disabled condition, have our utmost compassion and respect. We will never look at them the same way…which leads me to number 7…
- Every doorway in every home or hotel, every parking space, every aisle in every store, every hallway everywhere, should be extra-wide. I am just sayin’. <stepping gingerly off soapbox so as not to break my own leg>
- God IS good. Even in the midst of the dark, stressful, painful and seemingly never ending times of life.
When I dropped Emma off at school on Monday of this week, and I watched her walking under her own steam, on her own two legs, carrying her own backpack, I could not hold back the tears as I drove away…the tears of joy I felt to finally see her as she should be…the relief I felt, knowing that we are finally…finally… nearing the end of this journey.
We are on the way now, back to life as we once knew it. Although, I don’t think it can ever truly be the same as it ever was. Not that I would want it to be. Though this experience has been incredibly difficult and stressful at times, I would not trade the time I have been able to share with Emma. Caring for her. Talking with her. The precious time that is so quickly fleeting. Emma would probably trade it in a heartbeat for a chance to finish her softball season, to fully enjoy that trip to Disneyworld last spring, to go to the beach or pool last summer or hang out with her friends. But maybe not.