Once I got the hang of tying knots, unloading the huge rolls of fabric and having break with older ladies with self-proclaimed little understanding of birth control and more interesting stories about where they applied their hair coloring than should ever be shared, I had long periods of time on my hands. Even while working I had plenty of time to think. And think. And think.
I had been through a traumatic event the year before. All those hours, often sitting waiting for the next burst of action, I had time to process what I could not in earlier emotional months. Times to recognize that the daily schedule of an 8 hour job was good. Working with my hands - cathartic. Time to just be, and think, and heal.
It was a life lesson I never forgot.
Birdie has lot of time on her own hands now with very little social interaction. On days she is able, she busily types away. I'm not really sure how much she is processing her own journey. She firmly declared she does.not.journal. That's for mom. She's a writer. She constantly has stories evolving in her mind. I think they keep her mind off daily struggles. I pray they do. I really think time of processing this journey is in the future. And yet.
Birdie doesn't focus too much on the what ifs. She told me that she only has one choice - to grow and become a better person from this illness, because the opposite choice is just not acceptable to her. She will not become bitter and regretful.
A wise mom who has travelled this road before me recently shared,
My prayer for our family when they were just tots was that God would tie us together with strong bonds of love. I am seeing that prayer fulfilled.We learned to shift quickly and often seamlessly between the really awful days and experiences and those that were not half-bad and sometimes even offered glimmers of improvement. We learned not to hold on to any of it, just move through it - bear the bad and CELEBRATE the better - infusing humor where we could. We look back now and see so much growth and so many wonderful moments that drew us closer and made us stronger.
I am beyond thankful for a dad that ALWAYS made me laugh in the hard situations. Whether I was mad, crushed, or sick he'd have me laughing within minutes. That gift is truly priceless.
My sense of humor in no way equals his, but at some point, even on our worst days, I can draw a smile.
And in those moments, we are good.