Sunday, November 15, 2009

11/15 A Special Sunday

We arrived early at the Salvation Army Citadel and found the sanctuary empty but the two Sunday School rooms down the hall packed out. We joined the tail end of John Sosa's study and it was literally standing room only, people jumping up to get more chairs, then jumping up again to get more chairs. It was exactly the kind of colorful gathering I love the most and almost never find: people of all ages, races, and economic classes all mixed together earnestly applying themselves to the project of living more Spirit-centered lives, from the not-quite sober homeless guy who'd brought along another homeless friend, to pastors and teachers, kids and coaches to the Sandstroms, just in after a lengthy life-changing hospital ordeal.

We also greatly enjoyed the church service. So many people genuinely delighted to see Chuck and to give us hugs.

We went out to Aladdin's afterward with Jim and Sue Betts and their three kids Katie, Emily and Ian for MiddleEastern cuisine. (Someone had to explain to Jim what a chick pea was.)

Chuck is practically speechless with fatigue after all the stimulation, but he was the one who took the initiative to go to the SA Church today and to invite the Betts' to lunch. Though he didn't speak a great deal, he was very much in the spirit of it all.

Saturday night:

We had a terrific time with Mary and Kevin O'Shea and our new friends Cindy and Jerry. Jerry's TBI recovery has been slow and Cindy has what looks to me like an impossible burden. Our hearts just went out to both of them and we hope to spend more time with them. We had blue gill, walleye and perch for dinner (Kevin's catch) and I'm telling you that the way Mary prepared it, it was the best-tasting fish I've ever had in my life. And I'm funny about fish. Kevin, you may remember, occupied one of the net beds at Edwin Shaw a few years back recovering from TBI. He teaches and cuts down trees for a living, volunteers everywhere, has a gorgeous wife and quite a testimony. And he misplaces things, like his glasses, but he's no worse than I am. (I wish I could claim TBI as a reason for my scattered ways.)

At the end of two weeks at Gilcrest, I feel nearly all the pieces are in place except for good rest. The facility isn't set up for Chuck to get quiet spaces and this is taking a toll. He has been over-tired. Today he told me he had felt angry about being left in the day care but then he realized the importance of both of us doing our part to move our lives forward. It's an imperfect situation, but it's the season we're in. Once Chuck has a phone he can operate, we'll be a step closer to more independence. Meanwhile, he's got a world-class trainer and a whole cadre of professionals working to get his speech and body back while his brain heals.

We are both in good spirits.

1 comment:

  1. Auburn,
    It was great speaking with you today. Remember to check out my blog at Try and add more authors -- people that "touch" Chuck on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.