Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Past 81 Days

It's been 81 days since Peyton broke his femur during a football game. It's gone fast but taken forever. It's been full of worry, frustration, anxiety, remembering and reminding, patience, a sense of humor and gratitude. 

Yesterday, we went back to the surgeon for a check up. We sat in the crowded waiting room for over an hour. It took the doctor 10 minutes to look over the X-ray, ask a few questions and tell us good luck and that he'd see us back in nine months.

This is it, a healing femur with pins and a plate. Crazy.

Peyton was so happy. I was so happy. It was over. We went to lunch to celebrate. Looking back over the past 81 days there are parts that I will actually miss...the opportunities to sit in waiting rooms with my boy and laugh at each other as we fumble through learning to use SnapChat, or going to lunch together in the middle of a school day,  or watching a movie together while the rest of the family goes sledding. I've spent so much one-on-one time with my 14-year-old and enjoyed every minute of it. We've talked about what high school might be like next year, the NFL, the presidential election, my liberal world views and his dad's more conservative views and what his own views are, books, friends, social media, the importance of lyrics, the poetry of rap music and SO MUCH MORE. I will forever treasure this time with my first born.  

"I hope we don't only go out to lunch when you are recovering from an injury," I told him as I drove him back to school after our celebratory lunch.  "I have loved hanging out with you, you know. I hope we do this every once in a while for forever.  I hope you come home from college and say 'hey, want to go to lunch Ma?'," I told him and we laughed because he doesn't call me "Ma."

I love this kid. He is smart and strong and so kind.

Hopefully I've learned to be a more present parent, a better parent. A parent that takes the time to talk, to connect, to go out to lunch, to listen, to sit with and enjoy my kids more.  When there's an opportunity to talk and/or connect with my older kids and no one is rolling their eyes, I hope I take it.

There are other lessons from the past 81 days. Hopefully I've learned to be full of more empathy and gratitude and to pay it all forward. My heart kind of exploded with compassion for families that have children with chronic illnesses or life situations that require hospitals, therapies, appointment after appointment, and insurance companies and wheelchairs and check ups and so much more.  When Peyton got injured and had surgery, I knew he would recover. I can't imagine not knowing. 

All of this has made me want to do something, anything, to help people that need it. I want to hold more doors open, go to the rallies to support candidates, get informed, volunteer at the hospital, pay better attention to friends and strangers that might need more kindness or help. I want to say thank you more. I want to pay more attention to....well, everything.

Peyton is determined to get his strength back and compete on the track team for his school. Even though I know I will always worry that it's too much (I mean probably forever right?), I will be cheering from the stands(I mean probably crying too, right?). And then maybe he and I will go out to lunch together.


  1. I love this, love that you could grab this time and use the heck out of it to strengthen your relationship, you know? Teens need their parents more than at any other age, I'm convinced. It sounds weird to say, but what a lucky pair you are!

  2. I'm glad you've spent that time together and know you'll keep doing it :)