Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!!! I just erased the part of this update that I had begun and started over. I was attempting to be sarcastic and tell everyone just how hard life is right now because of Dale's accident---but I couldn't. God has been far too good to us to downplay any of what He has done, and it is our goal in this blog to detail His wondrous healing of Dale and give Him all the glory for the great things He has done and is continuing to do. We simply have an almighty God!
Another note of progress: Saturday night as I was helping Dale down the stairs after his bath, he told me he thought he was ready to walk down both flights of stairs step-over-step. Usually I have him walk down the first flight by bringing both feet onto the same step, alternating which foot steps down first; then, when we reach the landing, I'll have Dale walk down the second flight step-over-step. Since he was the one volunteering to try both flights, I quickly agreed. So, Sunday morning, even though he was shaky and had already fallen once, I reminded him of his decision. He did great!!! He walked down both flights of stairs step-over-step with no problem, only scuffing his heel on a step towards the end. He even caught himself on that one and pushed back up to stand instead of plopping down on the step behind him. This morning: same thing........except I tricked him. I usually walk backwards down the steps in front of him, holding his left hand with my right and using my left hand as an extra support under his left armpit. This morning, I simply held his left hand and made no attempt to offer that extra armpit support (sounds nasty, doesn't it?). Dale walked down both flights of stairs just beautifully! Once we reached the bottom, I told him about the no-extra-support trick I had pulled. He was shocked to realize that he had done just fine without it. Just one more thing for which to praise our Maker!
Last Wednesday, Dale had PT and SP back to back. Dale did great in both therapies, of course. PT has been playing a game (which also qualifies as work!) in which Dale stands opposite the therapist with me close by just in case. He holds a hula hoop and tries to spin it forward in such a way that will cause it to roll right back to him. This requires him to properly flick his wrist as he spins the hoop---kind of like the right way to throw a frisbee as opposed to the way which causes the frisbee to careen wildly all over the park before crashing into the side of some unsuspecting picnicker's head! (Yes, that's how I throw it!) The first few times Dale tried the hula hoop trick, he really struggled with both keeping his balance and spinning the hoop. By Wednesday, he had mastered it. He spun the hoop correctly about seven times in a row, and Alison said, "This is way too easy for you." One of the "rules" of PT is: Never say something is easy because we'll just make it hard! So, Dale showed that the hoop was no longer a challenge; it was time to move on to something else. He did some swinging and other exercising and, in general, had a great day.
SP, as I have mentioned, has been really pushing Dale to think hard for longer periods of time, and I have been using that same technique in school as well. Dale gets especially tired in the afternoons (don't we all?), and he groans each time I bring out another subject or activity for him to work on. His response time when he's tired is slower but not so much that I feel we're overtaxing his poor, battered brain. It's good for him to push farther than he wants to; this helps him know he can do it and encourages him to try harder when he knows he's tired. I, frankly, get a bit discouraged when I look at how much work Dale is doing each day compared with how much of his curriculum books he has left to wade through. Sometimes it seems like we'll never catch up! But then I remind myself that (1) God planned this and is using it for His glory, (2) Dale is working hard and steadily and doing well, and (3) we don't need to cover every little exercise in the books as long as Dale is getting the main idea and demonstrating his ability to use the lessons learned. He really is doing well. I'd say he's earning a solid "C" average in each subject; some quizzes are a bit lower, but his knowledge of the material is good.
I hope each of you mothers had a special day yesterday. I say that knowing that, for many of you, the day resembled every other day before it, with the possible exception of folks wishing you "Happy Mother's Day" every other second which you accept and return with a smile that hides your desire to scream loud and long! I actually got spoiled by my family. Usually they just sign a card and my husband gives me flowers. Yesterday, however, I was served breakfast in bed by my recently turned 11 year old and my husband. (Amanda was not feeling well, although she went to church, and Katie had to get to buses.) Ashley wound up cooking the pancakes which Katie mixed, scrambling eggs all by herself, and pouring me tea. What a wonderful surprise! (The food even tasted good!!! You mothers know what I'm talking about!) Then, after the morning service, my husband took me out to lunch. THAT was completely enjoyable! I only had to "fix" one meal yesterday---and that was giving Dale a bowl of cereal. Tough work, don't you know?
Mothers are special people: sacrificing, hard-working, praying, loving, chastising, underappreciated people. And, sometimes, we let everyone know just how much they owe us! Our preacher gave an illustration yesterday that perfectly explained this point: A man arrived home from work one day to an unexpected scene. His three children were dancing around on the front lawn, still wearing their pajamas. It was obvious that their hair had not been combed nor their faces washed all day. There were empty boxes of cereal and various food containers littering the yard. The door to his wife's car was standing open, as was the front door of the house. Upon entering, the man discovered even more chaos. The living room was a disaster: cushions thrown on the floor, all the lights on, the TV blaring on the cartoon channel, and an unpleasant "present" left by the family dog in one corner. Growing more alarmed by the minute, the man raced upstairs to find the same state of confusion in each room: beds unmade, toilets unflushed, and toys scattered everywhere. Bursting through the door of the master bedroom, the man was astounded to see his wife, whom he thought must be seriously ill, lounging on the bed, still clad in her nightclothes, sipping some hot tea and paging through a magazine. He cried out in astonishment, "What is going on?" His wife glanced up and nonchalently replied, "Well, honey, yesterday you asked me what in the world I do with myself all day long. Now you know!"
Happy Mother's Day to all the deserving mothers out there........and the rest of us, too!!! God bless you!
Proverbs 31: 27 - 28 "She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her."