There’s nothing funny about your daughter breaking two bones in her leg. There’s definitely no humor in being a parent who is in another state when this trauma occurs.
There isn’t room for laughter when dealing with extreme pain as a leg is being set and casted. Yet, as my youngest endures the days after this traumatic soccer injury, she is allowing humor to get her through the hardest parts. We are doing our best to bring it back into the fray ourselves so that everyone can breathe. Luckily, my kids learned this skill from their father.
My husband was given a triple dose of the humor gene when he was born.
He is quick. He is clever. He is incrediby talented at turning even the most hideous situation into a bearable one with side splitting observations of the obvious. It’s his best quality and I didn’t know how important it was for a successful marriage until I was right there in th middle of it…doubled over with laughter. He, thankfully, passed it on to his girls and there is more quipping at our dinner table than in a comedy club.
So…in examining our latest predicament (i.e., my 11-year-old in a wheelchair with a cast almost to her pelvis), I’d have to say we are relying heavily on this family virtue.
Goofy socks, a screaming yellow cast full of sharpie pen marks, and a tricked out wheelchair have made it into the mix. There have been countless comedies rented to keep her spirits up while she was couched for three days.
I will say that there has been despair, agony and anxiety. There have been countless tears shed over the lost soccer season and the chance to defend her cross country title on the national level. Hard core athletes can be born in 6th grade. I’ve seen it with my own eyes. I’ve stood on the sidelines in awe of what her little body can accomplish. Some of my proudest parent moments have been experienced with my hands in the air at the finish line. To say that the sadness runs deep and wide with this injury is the understatement of the year in our household.
I do believe it’s important to sit in it for awhile., the sadness, I mean. Denying it in some super human attempt at “getting over it” or “letting it go” is not helping the healing process. I’m an emotional person—I cry when others cry. This is not the best method for cheering up your downtrodden offspring, but I do feel it validates that the despair is present. I am not one to minimalize the gravity of a person’s pain. It’s not my job to tell some hurting to “get on with it” or “suck it up”. This week I let her have the time to grieve. I felt nauseous myself as I watched the disappointment. I’m sure if you x-rayed my heart this week there would be a huge jagged crack down the middle. Yet, I also know that as a mom, my next job is to do what I can to bring joy back in…even if the bright side is dim and barely visible beyond the horizon.
Thank goodness old interests have returned to her repertoire. I’ve seen more beautiful drawings and collages created this weekend than I have in two years. The amount of books being devoured is equally impressive. She is also at the point where visits from friends are a big pick-me-up.
She is one tough kid.
Humor and happiness do live here even in the rough times…so thankful for that.