15 nov 2018

I snuck out last night to get some things for a mini kitchen makeover and popped into Barnes and Noble to walk around. The words “Green Gables” caught my eye and saw this prequel to my beloved Anne. I about fainted.

Marilla could very well be my favorite character. And to already know the ending, that she never married and lived out her years with just her brother on the farm? My heart already hurts.

I debated about buying it as a Christmas present to myself, but ended up swinging by the library and getting on the waiting list which was good because that money was instead spent on this sweet vintage tea kettle.

I’m trying really hard to not buy things just to fill a space. But no microwave and no kettle means we boil up water daily in a saucepan for our tea (What have we become? Coffee is barely used anymore.) The sauce pan is fine, but this. Just in time for the holidays and gives me the feels.

I was walking around Hobby Lobby still telling myself to not buy just to buy, and must have been staring at one particular shelf for a long time. An older employee next to me said, “Ma’am? Can I help you find something?” I said “no thanks” and went back to staring. And then he added, “Sometimes it’s just nice to have a few moments of quiet and peace, huh.” I laughed so loudly and said, Is it written all over my face?? He smiled, “I’ve been there before. Enjoy these few minutes alone.” There have been several times someone has commented on me just wandering the aisles at a store. It’s like we’re all on the same team, raising these kids.

12 nov 2018

First snow of the season and so happy.

Ballet was cancelled (one of the perks of being literally half the class, if the other two girls call in, so do we!) After they tried hard to have a snowball fight, they finally came in and helped me make bagels. One of them had the gall to ask, Does it have to be perfect? Perfectly imperfect is our motto around here, for both people and activities.

9 nov 2018

They only sleep in on days they can’t. So as I put on a robe, made some tea, and plopped myself onto the chair to bask in the extra 15 (maybe 30 if there’s a miracle?) minutes, I heard the door open and close and knew it was Annie. She wanted to immediately play a game with me, so I somehow convinced her to do all the work, which included performing various ballet moves, while I continued to sit in the chair. This was enough for her, thankfully. Ryan said the other day that when you hear the phrase “they’re full of life”, you don’t really see many people embody that…until you meet Annie. The tricky part we’re trying to figure out now is how to make her obey without breaking her spirit.

Gertie’s dear Sherrie worked her last day at our clinic yesterday. She was one of her first physical therapists and saw the ups and downs with both of us. I had a couple crying spells in front of this poor woman, who not once batted an eye. Ryan picked Gertie up one day and she and him were talking about a maneuver or a piece of equipment or something and he said, I’m glad you’re thinking a few steps ahead for her and she replied, “oh I’m always thinking about Gertie.” Almost three years with that mindset on Gertie can only have been a blessing.

And then part of Ruth’s homework, what she’d like to know about Abe Lincoln. Death and Fashion, you go girl.

8 nov 2018

When I picked Gertie up yesterday, her head therapist said they practiced walking with no walker, just her hands on G’s back so she’d feel comforted. “Oh!” I said, kinda surprised. Weren’t they just getting her used to the walker (although she can climb up and turn around in it all by herself now). And she said, “Oh yeah and we’re fully expecting you to donate that walker when she’s done with it.” I laughed a little and told her she needed to set the expectation level down a notch for dear ole mom. They’ve seen my own journey along with Gertie’s, struggling to find a place of reality with her abilities. Later that evening she texted me and reiterated that she 100% believes Gertie will walk on her own and she doesn’t throw that percentage around lightly, especially to parents, and especially to me.

I guess I just don’t know how to react. Of course I’m elated to hear that, but my knee jerk is to still reserve a fraction of my heart to safe keeping. I’ve been burned by my own and sometimes other’s overly optimistic expectations and I’ve only just gotten to a place of peace. So then, to be offered a better than expected scenario, it’s just scary and vulnerable. I remind myself to still take it day by day with what Gertie gives me.

I’m still amazed (and sometimes embarrassed) that it’s taken me having to give birth to and then raise a special needs kid to learn these lessons of patience and contentment. Why couldn’t I have learned it beforehand, without G needing to be a part of it? I used to sometimes think that because of my stubbornness and selfishness God gave me Gertie. But I don’t believe that anymore. It’s nothing that I did or how I am that made him give anything to me, to “teach” me anything. Sad things happen, he doesn’t want them to, but they do. The difference is He uses these situations to bless us if we let Him in. And despite the daily exhaustion, I feel honored to say that through Gertie, He has given my life a depth that wouldn’t have been as easily found without her.

6 nov 2018

I hope they remember, after we graduated Gertie to the main table and removed her high chair, the excitement we all felt to have that tiny extra space in the kitchen. I hope they remember us crowding around our corner table, them drawing on the chalkboard wall half the time and their paintings hanging from the dishwasher and refrigerator.