Monday, September 12, 2011

emBRACe it!

It's a beautiful thing when your fears and doubts become moot. When the cloud of darkness that you convinced yourself is hanging over you, clears and you see that there really was clarity and light tentatively wrapping itself above you the whole time. When you swallow perspective and you take a breath and look back at the history of where you came from and how many beasts you slain and fires you walked through, suddenly, relief and a burdenless breath is your reality and you feel calm.

On September 7, Jackson was free. I say free with an elation and epiphany that continues to unfold before my eyes each day he is able to move more freely, touch his own skin and say, "that feels better!" or get into a tub of warm bath water whenever he desires. The list goes on... today I asked the boys, simply because I could..."do you want to go in the pool?" Do you know how long it's been since I could udder those words? Jack's reply, " too?!...yeah!"


The simple things that for the last 22 months had not been so simple, I now understand are gifts and treasures and I will never take them for granted: he can puke and I won't have to wonder if it went down his cast. He can soil if it be and I will not have to recreate the tape job around the base of his cast in an hour process to try to salvage his shell. If it sprinkles? If it rains? Bring it.
Sand? Though I despise sandboxes, I shall not have to avoid them in fear. I can sign him up for swim lessons. I can get an hour of squishy hugs every day. EVERY DAY.


The transition to brace life has been much less troublesome than I had worked up in my head. Despite the first couple of days when Jackson thought it was the status quo to remove the brace to go potty, there wasn't much of an issue. He has since learned that he CAN get up on the seat with his brace and will not get the brace wet. He has slept through the night since the first evening and has stopped wincing, "it hurts"...or "too tight"...when I adjust his straps and brace him up. I think I've even diminished the fear that I'm not putting the darn thing on correctly.


The end all~be all of the emotional peek of brace life was marked by our Cast Off Blast Off party we threw for our Superhero on Saturday, September 10. I shall never be able to fully paint the picture of love and joy that wrapped itself around our home on that beautiful Saturday. Surrounded by both sets of his grandparents, siblings, cousins, aunts and uncles, family and peer friends, our son felt love. He felt happiness. He felt excitement and giddiness, gratitude and blessings....he felt free. Yes, he's three and cannot and will not be able to tell you these things himself, but as a parent observing this just know. It was flowing through his soul. It was flowing through mine.


I could spend much more time writing about all that took place that night, but no matter the choice words or antecdotes or just wouldn't truly capture the magic...the miracle. That's what it was after all. The magic of being with my Lucky Cast Club soulmates NOT in the shared space of a hospital waiting room. The miracle of elating in the laughter of our beautiful cast friends frolicking around with smiles, sporting casts and brace with not a care in the world and no surgery looming in the next room. Beloved friends and loved ones, lots of tears of joy, reflection and empathy, singing, dancing, eating and drinking... celebrating. It was breathtaking.


More rewarding and breathtaking for Adam and I was the gift we were able to give back to our Lucky Cast Club family that night. At the close of our celebration, we gathered in the calm of the moonlit sky to share our love with our newfound family. To honor each cast friend in their own journey toward healing, correction and courage, we lit 23 wish lanterns and sent them to the heavens with the song, My Wish, by Rascal Flatts, serenading us. God whispered to me in that moment, I swear. He touched my heart or maybe he winked at me, I'm not too sure, but somehow I knew....I felt...I grasped and savored and embraced...that it is all going to be okay.

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