Thursday, May 29, 2008

Loving Life

Now that Ralph is feeling better we are back to work on physical therapy. A big "thank you" goes out to big brother Richard for taking about a hundred pictures while helping us work with him. Here is Ralph on the treadmill:

I hesitate to take him places like this because of the risk that he will pick up another infection. I'm really sick of the hospital and I think the folks there are sick of me! But, On the other hand I hate to treat Ralph like a shut-in.

Here is Ralph sitting on the cool platform swing: It takes some core strength and concentration to sit up nice and straight while this is swinging. He does great!

Here's one more for grandma:

Friday, May 23, 2008

Letting go of perfect

You know...I must have looked at a thousand floor plans before I settled on the plan for our house. We waited for so many was a huge, big deal. Imagine a family of 9 in a little 3 bed 1 bath. It wasn't terrible, but we were ready for more room. I agonized over the room dimensions, laundry room and closet placement, open living areas. Oh, and the kitchen.

The perfect kitchen. One where I can see the front and back yard and living areas while cooking and doing dishes (ok, so I don't really do dishes...). A kitchen with a huge island which seats 6. The professional grade 6 burner gas range. Can you visualize me doing my own cooking show?

Things which are supposed to be perfect seldom are, I've learned. The reality is this: the island only seats 4...well, only 3 because I let the bills and school papers pile up on one end...I couldn't afford the big gas range...and I couldn't even get the small one because the plumber didn't run a gas line!!!!!

I distictly remember walking through an empty, freshly framed house with the plumber pointing out, among other things, where the gas stove would be and where to run a gas line to the patio for a grill.

By the time I found out about the omission, it was too late. I threw a real tantrum - tears and everything. My perfect kitchen was ruined. I'll bet you feel real sorry for me, huh?

What does this have to do with Ralph? God knew what my future held at the time the house was being built. Thank goodness I didn't! He knew that my baby would need oxygen therapy and that I cannot have an open flame in the house.

This makes me chuckle. God is so good

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Letting go

Yesterday was my last day teaching high school math. When I started teaching Geometry two years ago a light bulb switched on in my head. I'm a great teacher. I have a way of making new concepts understandable. Plus, I really, genuinely like teenagers.

I made the committment to teach this year before I knew of the health challenges that we faced with Ralphie. I made the committment to pay for private school before I know of the financial challenges we faced. Now I have to make good on the committment I made to Ralphie when he was born.

I firmly believe that Ralphie is a gift from God. A gift to our family. A gift to everyone he meets. Even a gift to people he has never met. So now I get to be a different kind of teacher. I get to help him develop his gifts. It is my calling.

I've been a good mom to Ralph, but it's been a tough, chaotic year and I haven't always been able to put him first. Now life is going to be different. Better. We all have some healing to do. Me and Ralph...and the crew.