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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The After.

I have to laugh. The moment I sit down to update this blog of ours, Nora wakes from her nap...45 minutes earlier than her typical length of nap. Its lovely I tell you, this life of mine. 

I've once again let time pass away with out logging onto my account and letting my fingers move across the keyboard doing the communicating. For now, I'm going to set aside the last couple months (I know some of you have been asking for updated pictures...they'll come!) and share just whats on my heart at this moment. 

Back in September, we celebrated Cale's birthday. Another year has passed and as always we're able to rejoice in what the Lord has done in his life. 

The morning started out with Mama running to the store early as I fed Nora. He doesn't care for cake but he sure does have a great appreciation for the manmade maple bar. It's quite the relationship. 

There was six of these maple frosted bars purchased and layered on a plate in such a way to make the perfect birthday breakfast cake. Mama even put a candle on top. We were so excited, knowing Cale was going to find this funny and enjoyable. 

After everything was ready to go and Nora was all taken care of, I walked into our bedroom to get Cale for breakfast. I was met with an angry man. He didn't want to have anything to do with me or anything I could say. I tried to talk with him and calm his ranting. 

Wait. Wasn't this supposed to be a happy morning? Everything is planned and ready! 

That doesn't matter when you have a brain injury and you lose all ability to reason. Nothing matters except for the emotion you experience in that very moment. 

Mama had to leave real quick so I was left with Cale and Nora. 

All of a sudden Cale burst out of the room and decided he was taking off. Directing to the man cave wasn't going to help this time. Unfortunately. 

We have the police department on board for times like this. For times when he bolts and I'm here with a baby unable to chase after him. For a split second I questioned what I should do. Call the police? It didn't really seem like a fit for this situation. Quickly get Nora into her carseat and follow after? Possibly but I'm limited in what I can do when she's with me. I wouldn't be able to jump out of the car and walk with him at all.

I called our neighbor that lives down our street. Tiffany has saved us more than once in different normal life stuff and as always she was to the rescue. All I had to say was that Cale was upset and walking down the street.  She ended up walking for a long time with him (barefoot!) until our youth pastor at church came and talked Cale into going for a drive. 

All the while, there was this plate of donuts sitting in the microwave, untouched. 

Happy Birthday Cale...

In our home, days like this happen. They come and go. Without warning we have bad days when brain injury takes over. Tears usually come with it. 

Eventually, sometimes minutes and sometimes hours later, there comes a relief over whatever situation we're in. A time when smiles come back. 

There comes a time when brain injury seems to take a break and the donut cake comes out and the candle gets blown out. 

Those hard moments are hard. I'm not going to lie or make it seem like I respond perfectly and handle it full of grace and dignity. 

Most of the time, I have absolutely no clue what to do...unless he's mad at you and not me. I can do that just fine ;) 

I always know there's the other side. There's always the after. There's always the sunlight that begins to peak through the clouds after the rain is over. 

I bask in those moments. 

I soak in the smiles, cheers, and laughter. 

We recently walked through a few weeks of storm clouds and rain in this house. I was even in conversation with his doc at Walter Reed. Would we need to go back? What can be done? What do I need to do? So many questions and as I sat at Jesus' feet, I didn't feel like there was a clear answer. I pressed in. I became very still before Him. I didn't go mad trying to figure out the perfect solution. I just waited before the Lord with truth opened across my lap. 

And, without too much notice, we've entered into the "after" and the rays of sunlight are over us. 

There will be another episode of anger but as far as another stormy season, we've come through once again. Excitement wells up within me as we're together holding hands into this next season. 



  1. I love that you have come to know what you can control, what you can't, and what your support systems are. That's pretty remarkable and I am glad you are able to function with that knowledge.

    - Ashton -

  2. Oh, my Sweet Jesus Girl, Father is SOOOO proud of you. He see you doing what you can, and trusting Him with the rest. He loves the way you come sit at His feet and recognize the gifts of Sonshine He gives you. He loves that you realize "This too, shall pass". He loves how you honor Him and bring Him Glory. He will bless you.

    I love you,

  3. Dearest Kathleen--
    I have checked this blog so often lately to make sure I hadn't missed a post and was so glad to see one up today. I have felt concerned for you lately but kept resting in the Lord with it and in prayer. As I read it I realized the Lord had kept putting you on my heart for very specific reasons to pray. I could so totally picture Cale's birthday going like that but could understand the disappointment you must have initially felt. Then for it to pass and things to be ok. I have so often seen this with my father's brain injury after stroke. Just today before I read your post I was on the phone with my father who is now living permanently in a nursing facility and he was telling me he wanted me to come get him out of there (I live 800 miles away, my mom and sister are right there)....he said that it was miserable and a prison. He said if someone didn't get him out he would rather be dead. An aide had apparently been harsh with him (although he probably had been annoying and demanding) and this had ruined his day and now he wanted to die. There was NO reasoning with him about it and he wanted me to come get him. It is so tough. BUT...I see you continuing to press on in this journey you are on knowing the Lord will carry you when you can't take a step further! The Lord sees your heart and is pleased with you even on the hard days. Keep your eyes fixed on Him!! Nora is so cute! Looking forward to seeing more photos! would really love to have one of those donuts at this very moment...truly I would. They look delicious!!! ;o)
    Lots of love,
    Emily J.

  4. So many questions and as I sat at Jesus' feet, I didn't feel like there was a clear answer. I pressed in. I became very still before Him. I didn't go mad trying to figure out the perfect solution. I just waited before the Lord with truth opened across my lap. ~ this is the most complex and simplest answer be still and know - OH Kathleen you are so right so exactly doing what only you can do in these kinds of moments - I need to do this so much more than spouting off and spilling over - thank you thank you thank you for the reminder - it was well needed love you blessings always Reenie


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