Thursday, May 30, 2019

Toothpaste

"My toothpaste is broken!" 

There are so many little things that happen during our day that make the presence of brain injury in our life very known and real. 

Some of these things are funny. I mean, maybe not to everyone, but definitely funny to me...which I think is maybe part  because others would feel so uncomfortable laughing at something like that. It's still funny though.

Some of these things are very funny and are laughed at by those around us. 

Some of these things make us painfully aware. 

As the years have gone by, I know I'm not always as patient as I once was when dealing with some of these things. Like, when he's asked the same question for the 100th time that day or when he's told me the same story for the 100th time with lots of enthusiasm and expects my response to be filled with just as much excitement as it had on the first time. 

I love that he tells stories, I truly do. I also love that he learns a random fact that I know he once knew but to him it is the first time he's registering this information. I do try really hard to continue to listen and respond "correctly" but I can't say it's always the most genuine. 

Last night when we were getting washed up for bed, Cale declares, "my toothpaste is broken!" He repeated himself a couple times and I knew immediately that wasn't what he was meaning to say. I looked up at him after spitting my own toothpaste into my sink and said, "Cale, your toothpaste isn't broken." 

I rinsed my mouth and gave him the time he needed to figure out what he was trying to say. His hand was on his watch but he kept saying toothpaste. With just a few quiet seconds he said, "Um, I don't know what it's called." In the past, I would have worked through with him, making space for him to figure out whatever it was he was struggling with but instead this time I blurted, "your watch." 

This wasn't a big deal, and I'm not beating myself up about it but I do know these little situations in our day unfold more often than I would like to admit. 

I think with taking care of home and two littles and living in constant motion, taking things slow is not my jam. As I continue to work hard at reminding myself that he needs me to sit and watch a video that he has shown me a million times already and that he needs me to laugh...again...the slowness it causes in my day is good. It's a good thing. It's showing him I love him. I care about him and he's important to me. 

One thing that has been on my mind is how Nora is with him. Something happened last week that caused an upset (I'm not really sure what to call it...) and the next day when I talked to Nora about it she said, "Mommy, I didn't want daddy to leave forever. I didn't know if he was going to come back." 

She loves her daddy. I've been a witness to this sweet sweet love over and over. She is full of grace and forgiveness for him. She loves to share things with him and tell him about things she is learning even if he doesn't have any idea of what she's talking about or shows that he cares. 

She hears him and sees him mess up repeatedly. She listens to him stumble over words and how he doesn't understand basic concepts that even she understands. Often they try to have a conversation and can't understand each other. 

She watches how life is played out in our home and she just loves him. 

It's beautiful. 


It's a funny thing when I sit and think about the way she's young and growing, I'm teaching her so much. She's learning every day from me, whether it's how to spell something, how to be a good friend, how to be kind or even how to love Jesus. While my little lady is learning, she's teaching her mommy how to better love her daddy.

I know over the years, we'll learn together. We'll challenge each other and have to call each other out on different things. We have Easton who will join in on all of it as well. There's nothing about brain injury that is a hard line. What Cale likes one minute, he doesn't the next. What makes him angry one day has no affect on him the next. 

One thing that is so certain, is he needs our love and his daughter has an overflow of it. 



4 comments:

  1. Thank you for the reminder that love is needed. Different situations, but the same answer. Father has used you mightily once again, in my life. You are His gem come down.

    I remember when I was visiting my Aunt, I needed to ask Father to put His expressions on my face. I've done it since then...He's good at shining through when we ask Him.

    I love you and am grateful for Father's gift of our shared journey,

    Marion

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    Replies
    1. I love so much that He chooses to use my words! Praying for you...

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  2. Children are a gift from God, and although you are teaching her tremendous things like love, honesty, patience and grace, especially with Cale, it is also SO TRUE that they, with their simplicity, can teach us so much! Another gift from God...

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