Saturday, November 5, 2016

one for each of us

A lesson I've learned while walking beside and loving my child with catastrophic epilepsy...

He is far braver than words can capture and his words will always fail to fully enlighten us to all the complicated thoughts and memories he carries inside.

We told him we needed to run an errand this morning. We didn't tell him it was to the lab for bloodwork. Clearly, some internal warning system had red flags waving because his anxiety was climbing. As we were walking to the car he began getting weepy. He was wringing his hands, with a wild look in his eye and saying, repetitively, "I don't know where we're going, though. I don't know where."

I knew the moment to tell him had come. We are always honest with him about these things, though we do delay the process to save him as much anxiety as possible. I squatted down to eye level. Grabbed both his hands in mine. And told him we were headed to the lab. The words hung there between us. I could see him processing the information and feel him tense up in rejection. This was NOT how he intended to spend his Saturday. Then, miraculously, he physically relaxed into acceptance.

From that point on he never cried. He didn't fight walking into the building. He didn't flinch (much) when they poked him or while they drew the FOUR vials needed. He did perfect. PERFECT.

The nurses were so impressed they let him choose as many stickers as he wanted.

He chose five. One for each of his family members. 

Melt me.

He was so brave.

So heartbreakingly brave.

He slurped a frozen hot cocoa coolatta as a reward.

Jonathan and I were so very proud of him. But we also wondered what he must have been worried was going to happen this morning. Because the way he simply accepted that we were going to the lab meant that all the anxiety he was expressing was stemming from a worse possibility. 

And the Lord knows he has memories of being through far worse procedures from which to draw.

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