Lost? Here You Go. You Can Thank Me Later.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dance, Daffy. DANCE!

I was asking my brilliant wife about her day.

"How was your day?" I asked.

"Just fine," she said wearily.

"What did you do?" I ask, as if she was just standing around doing nothing.

"I took Miriam to physical therapy," she replies. "That's the one up North, about sixty miles. Then we were off to two appointments at Children's Hospital. Then we had another fitting at the wheelchair company, because the wheel fell off and killed a cat."

I listen intently, yet I'm busy worrying if I look too fat in my slacks.

To illustrate how SHE probably feels, click this video and scroll to the 1:25 minute mark. 

Yep, that's how I think she sees things. Considering this, I did some thinking.

(Yes, more of that.)

As a parent of a child with special needs, I harbor a deep, deep secret. It's one I suspect is held by many people who have gone through some kind of personal tragedy, though I'll not presume this to be a fact. Though I think it might be.

To understand this secret, I offer you a tantalizing clue:

Can you guess?

Sometimes I feel as if we have it worse than other people.

Ridiculous! you say.

But my daughter will never walk, I reply. We had a healthy daughter in utero who, through a series of tragic events, suffered birth trauma that led to her disability.

That sounds pretty tough, you might reply.

Trust me. This fits.
This led to unsettling truths, I continue. Truths about a darker side to the medical and insurance industries.

Really? you ask.

Deep inside you wonder if my interest in shadowy intrigue came because I just saw the latest Captain America movie.


This led to a legal battle, I continue, where a court of law validated our concerns. 


It took over a decade, I add, thinking that might shock you.


During this time, my father died.

Ouch, you say, grimacing.

And my father-in-law.

Oh no.

And I lost my job.


Though we finally settled our case.

Wonderful, you say. Footprints in the sand, yada, yada, yada.

Now you're just mocking me.

No, seriously, you say. It all sounds so very…well, difficult.

Of course! I say, feeling emotional. Can't you see how much I've suffered?

You nod knowingly.

It sure looks that way, you say, looking at the exit. But I have to go. My daughter has leukemia, and she's been living at the hospital for the last two years.

And I stand there. I shake my head with genuine concern. Deep inside, however, I think: 

At least she can walk!


I should be ashamed of myself, and I am. There are many, many, many people who suffer far worse than us. There are many, many, many, many people who have it much better. It depends on your criteria.

To provide perspective, I invite you to visit this awesome website. (Click on the title below to view it; it uses Flash, so some mobile devices may not be able to display it.)

Do you see the analogy here?

We cannot really compare anything, really, because the very smallest is as amazing and terrible as the very largest. A star can complain because it's about to go supernova, on the very day an elephant lies dying next to a bug that was just squished.

What private sufferings exist in all of us? So myself and my daughter and my wife hustle and bustle and cry and worry and lose hair and go grey and lose sleep and pray and pray and pray and it's so easy to forget that yes, we suffer but yes, we are also blessed. We all are.

My daughter is loved.

So am I.

So keep dancing, my love. So the applause is quiet and the crickets are loud, and your husband can be a selfish, self-centered brat. Yet the blessings are all around us.

Can we see them?

Here are five of them.

Here are at least three.

I see four here.

Yep. Here are a few more.

And here.

This one is awesome.

Here is the best one.

Do you see them?

No comments:

Post a Comment