Wednesday, June 8, 2011

emotions...vent yes, complain no...

Emotions don't come to me that often as far as being in the thick of them. I do think alot but I am not a cryer, down in the dumps type person...and I don't mind that! But, when the emotions come so do the tears! I swapped a few emails this morning with a lady that I have never met but I have been following her blog. God recently blessed them with a baby that they adopted and oh my goodness he is the cutest lil man! Anyways, she sent me a response to an email I sent her..."don't lose hope. He DOES know the desires of your heart! Right before we got the call about E (baby they adopted) I told D (he husband) that I didn't want to do it anymore...I just felt like I couldn't go through the adoption process anymore! 5 failed adoptions was enough for me! But He is SO faithful and just when I thought I couldn't go on anymore His Grace was all sufficient and He provided our every need. E's adoption story was not what or how I thought our adoption would be but it is PERFECT for us! Even when I didn't know what was best, He did!!"
It was what I needed to hear in that moment but then in that moment I lost it! Ben was sitting in his chair next to me and I told him that I was sad. He asked why and I told him that I just wanted him back and I wanted this to be over. It kills me that I cannot give him an answer to his question of, "when is this situation is going to be over!" It hurts me so much to see him work so hard and him not get to where he wants to be. I told him that I am trying to be strong for him. I am trying to do my best and I wish that there was more I could to to help him get better. I asked him what I could do more of to help him and he said, "your doing it, you are with me!" He went on to say, "you didn't have to stay but you did. Oh, and I like your kisses, I like lots!" Ben told me that I am strong and God is teaching us to be strong together. I responded that I wish God had chosen to use different circumstances to teach us instead of what He had chosen. Ben calmly responded, "He is teaching us to be stong together!" While we were talking I had moved from the couch to Ben's lap as he sat in his chair. I asked him just to hold me and as he did he lifted his arms and started rubbing my back...all the while saying, "don't cry, I am here and it will be ok. I will work hard for you, I will work hard for me, we will get better!" I sat there and cried as he held me! It is moments like these that not only God calming my heart but He gives Ben the words and actions to help calm me too!
I don't know when "this situation" is going to end! I wish I did and my heart longs for it all the time. Maybe there is never a "date" or that time is when we go to heaven. It doesn't make me want to give up at all. Although there are not HUGE things taking place on the outward appearance of Ben's body I know there is alot going on in the inside. I can see more and more coming to the outside and although small they amount to something amazing! I am by no means complaining about the progress Ben has made but am forever greatful! There are too many families out there that I have come to know that haven't even had the chance to hear a single word from their son/husband, they haven't had to chance to see them take their first step, move a finger, follow a command. My heart breaks for these young men. I do allow myself to grieve, to still feel emotions because they are real. But when it comes to complaining I cannot! There are so many people that have it far worse then we do. Vent yes, complain no! In life we have alot to deal with both great and small but there is always someone out there that has it worse then us! Someone out there with more suffering.
I LOVED this email that I recently got from a friend whom I have known for years! Her grandson has been going through some medical issues since birth and knows a thing or two about patience and living life now..."Okay, I don't post a lot to your FB profile, but I'm sending you a message! First of all, Katie, I'm just going to be myself, okay? First of all, out of experience, I'm not going to say, you're so brave, or I don't know how you do it. Because I can tell you with all my heart, "what choice do you have", right? This is your life right now, and you're living it! And these pictures of Ben give me hope that he might just get through this. You know why I say that? There is an unbelievable determination in this man's eyes! It blows me away. Love you!"...this, on that day is what I needed! I loved the realness in her email and told me how it is! Life at times does suck but it is life right now! I love that she saw it as this and wasn't going to butter it all up! I also loved how she saw the determination and motivation in Ben...warms my heart!

Again, our life is busy! I don't want Ben to think he is missing out on things and for sure don't want us to be cooped up at home! I blogged last Friday so I will start on Sat! Ben had PT on Sat and that threw all my days off! He went off to the Y and I went to Target to get med refills. I didn't really want to go because it was in the low 80's but I had to because Ben was almost out. We did sit out in the sun earlier that day! Ben got worked over by PT and he came home and he was ready to chill! Later that evening we went over to our friends house right down the road to grill out! We had alot of fun and Ben made a new friend...

I thought Sunday was Saturday because of Saturday therapies. Ben got to bed late Sat so we stayed home from church relaxed and watched Joel O on t.v.! It was a good chill time. Later that day Ben and I took off to my nephews playoff soccer game! What a good game! Ok, they are like 7-9 year olds (i think) and what intensity they put themselves through. When we got there (about 5 min late) the score was tied. Then the other team was up, then they were tied, then we were up, then tied...oh my goodness! My nephews team ended up winning and it put them in first place!! GO Raptors!

Monday, Monday...well, no therapies today but almost a full day on post in the medical mall. Ben had a neurology appointment scheduled and they said to allow 90 min for the appointment. Madigan hospital is one of the largest hospitals out of all the posts and in knowing that I knew we had to leave early to find parking. Well, we got up there in enough time, didn't find one handicapt parking so I pulled along side an open space, got Ben out and then pulled in the spot. Inconvienient but it worked and I can use the walking these days! His appointment went well. We are going to be weaning Ben off another 2 meds!! At one point he was asked to spell the word black forward and backward and without even missing a beat Ben did it perfectly! They did some other cognitive testing, body checks, med comparisons and general questions and it went well. Ben remembered some of the things they asked him and others he needed some queing. We left that appointment with a list of things to schedule...MRI, blood work, neuro cognitive testing and a visit to the TBI clinic. Next stop, pharmacy! Lets just say I am grateful that I only have to get his meds on post every 90 days and when we go again I can just go to the refil counter! Thank goodness Ben is still active duty because we only had to wait a little over an hour where some had to wait over 2!! Last visit was for blood draws that took a whole 5 min to get checked in and get out! Now, that is my kind of visit! So, our lil 90 min appointment turned into a 0930-1400 day! Later that evening we walked to my brothers house where he wanted to spoil Ben with a double double hamburger and although it was no In-and-Out it was delish!
{bailey finally warmed up to ben and wanted to brush his hair!}

Tuesday Ben was back into the swing of therapies! He had ST first and Ben did a great job of recalling what he had done the day before. He continues to work on clarity of voice and inunciation! She has been recording him saying some short sentances and then bringing them back to Ben to see if he can understand them. We are working on getting Ben an ipad as well so that he can do alot more brain training and games. There is so much out there! Ben really has a great desire to learn and get better! He does so well and works so hard!

Later Tuesday afternoon Ben had PT. Lots of stretching, mat work, mirror work and small steps at the counter. Ben even did some standing on his own with nothing to hold on to! Getting there! Ben keeps telling everyone, "I just want to walk!" When we tell him he is he responds, "I want to walk on my own, the way I used to!" Such determination! Small steps forward Ben, small steps! He also was restless in bed last night and I asked him what was wrong? He said he was dreaming and when I asked him what he was dreaming about he said, "I am walking on my own and then I was starting to run!" WOW!! I love this!! I asked him if these dreams were from God and he said yes and that God was healing him!

Later Tuesday noght my parents came over for dinner with my lil bro. We then played a card game that Ben has never even heard of. He was getting bored until I got him involved (duh, should have thought of that earlier but we were all talking/playing) and then he was telling me where to put cards and if I could play them or not! It was fun but next time we will play a game that Ben kmows!

Ben had PT bright and early this 9! It again threw me off because therapies haven't started until 1030 so we have had our mornings. It was good for Ben though because he loves to be active in the morning. He did more of the same that he did yesterday and did really well again. We had a break for lunch...insert emotional breakdown here as mentioned above and then Ben had OT. They first worked on some writing in which Ben has not done for some time. He used the special tilt board this time and it really helped him out! He started off a lil scratchy but by the end his words/numbers were so much better! I think with a little more practice and me giving him a stack of cards he is going to write me alot of love notes! :)
They then went on to working on tying shoes with some new fangled tie thingies...and then bed transfers again. Right now they are making their way outside to do some walking. Ben's OT asked him a few times if he was up for it and Ben said, "I want to walk!" His OT said as he walked past me to get Ben's walker, "he is an animal!" Ben has always been a hard worker and go get em man! So proud of him!

My flowers are growing and this weekend we added to our deck a solor frog whom Ben named, "Mrs. Freedom" because she could go anywhere she wanted to and a campfire pit! We had one in GA and left it with our neighbors because I didn't want to store it and so we had to replace it! Only thing missing is a BBQ! Next thing to cross off the list! My flowers are also growing! Marion (you know which one you are) the white ones are from you! I finally got them planted and they are blosseming! Love them!!

"Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; But we will remember the name of the Lord our God" Ps 20:7

"Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God." Ps 43:5


Lacey said...

I have been following your blog for almost a year now and it touches me with every new post you write. Thank you for sharing your heart, it inspires me to trust God daily and the impact you have made on my marriage is incredible. You and Ben are making a difference..even when you cant see it! God is so good!

No Model Lady said...

Wow. So true. Just when we can't walk anymore he carries us. You guys amaze me everyday!

Theresa said...

You both are glorifying God in the midst of this trial! What an encouragement :)

Casey Martinez said...

Love your posts and your honesty. Love that though this is such an incredibly hard season you still shine for Christ! Praising God for every bit of progress Ben is making!! You are an amazing wife!

Mrs. Southern said...

I have never commented but have followed your blog for quite a while. I think I first found your blog through my sweet friend "L" that you are referring to. :) Your testimony of love and strength truly amaze me. Your positive outlook and faith help me to remember not take things for granted. Thank you for sharing your story, the ups, the downs and the journey you two are on.

B. Wilson said...

Your friend is so right-- I get that a lot the whole "you are strong" thing. Well, what choice do you/we have?

We have to pick up ourselves and carry on. It's okay to mourn the loss of what would be and vent about the adaptations that must be made. You have never sounded like a complainer to me in the many months I've been reading. You are thankful and it's clear that Ben is alive and progressing. You're doing fantastic. We all deserve to be able to cry every now and again and you shouldn't have to hide that!

Love the love you have for one another. Almost made me cry that Ben would say anything about you leaving-- you married for sickness and in health. And when that troubles us, we get stronger and stay strong for one another. That was a promise!

You're fantastic, lady.

chambanachik said...

I totally teared up reading this. I think it's amazing how many people you both encourage by living the life God has for you right now. I hope even more beautiful things are around the corner.

Anonymous said...

My venting, for the most part, is telling Father I don't think He is going to change the situation. Further more I don't care if He does or doesn't. If He wants anything done, He's going to have to do it without me. Always, after my tirade, comes the peace that passes all understanding. Sometimes I let my friends in on my....uh...'tudes. I have heard, "You are real, and that's what I like about you." Too, my Friend, read Isaiah 49:1-4. Jesus was venting, so to speak. If He does, I KNOW it's okay for you to. I guess, what I am trying to say, you are right where Father wants you, emotions and all. Yes, you are doing what Father puts before you. You do it with grace and style, AND Father is so proud of you. Much love, Marion Oh, yes, the flowers bloomed at just the right time. :) They remind me of stars.

The Life We Love said...

Katie, what a touching post. Of course i cried:) Your heart is so real and loving, scared and honest. I love it. The strides i have watched (or read:) ) both of you take are nothing short of miraculous. Ben looks like he is doing amazing. It's obviously hard and your always asking why, but Women YOU ARE STRONG! God will always give you what your heart desires. We are always praying for you and Ben here in Chicago! Enjoy your weekend!

Erin said...

SO, i think i have only posted a comment once or twice on here, but have been following for quite a while. I am just awestruck by Ben's determintaion, and your strength! I worked in Dodd Hall @ OSU for 1.5 years. It is one of the top 10 rehab hospitals in the nations, and I cannot tell you the fullfillmet I got from that job. I regret leaveing! You are so right when you talk about those who never get to hear words from their spouse/son/daughter/etc, or movement. You two are truly blessed! I have seen amazing recoveries, and constantly pray that Ben turns out to be one of these! He is WELL on his way!!! God bless!

Bonnie said...

Ive been following you for a while now, and this is my first time commenting... I can see in the pictures you post how much Ben is improving each time you post a new one. Ben is absolutely right, God is teaching you to be strong *together* :)

Anonymous said...


Of course I cried too! Great post and good to show your emotions and frustrations---I dont "know" you but your a great person!

Kris in Mn

Ashley said...

Love those flowers!!! What kind are they?

I am glad Ben is continuing to get comfortable in your home together!! I love how honet you have been with each other throughout this whole porcess!! You have courage and stregth that a lot of people would not have!!

Anonymous said...

Here is an encouraging clip I heard about that your post made me think of. It takes about a minute for them to start singing.

Elder Marvin Miller, Rev. Rance Allen, Pastor Bennie Oliphant on youtube.
Bless you

Brenda said...

OK, first off, LOVE LOVE LOVE the new look of your blog. Fresh and springy!

Secondly, congrats on a month of being in your home together! We all thought the day would never come as you counted down the days that couldn't seem to pass by quickly enough. My word, but has Ben made progress. Look at 6 months ago. Compare that to now. He is sure showing up the skeptics by continuing to make significant progress this far out from the accident. So long as there is progress, things are getting better. No telling how much progress Ben will eventually make, but it doesn't sound like he's slowing down yet! You both stay encouraged and try to keep the momentum up. Thank you for sharing so candidly in this blog... it's in those words from the heart that God is glorified and I want to draw more near to Him. Blessings!

Anonymous said...

I found your blog through that of another TBI soldier, B and his wife Di. All that you write and the way you open up your lives to your readers is truly inspirational. I can only aspire to faith as deep as yours. Please know that I am including both you and Ben in my prayers and wishing you the best as you continue this challenging journey.