Roberts dad had a stroke yesterday. It was mild but they said it could have been much worse if he had not come quickly to the hospital. He has lost much of his vision and that is causing him a lot of anxiety. He is thinking that he is no good if he can't see and that this is the beginning of the end.
I sat my kids down and told them. I told them it was not like mine and that Papa was okay. But they heard the word STROKE and they knew it was serious. I had to also tell them that it was not okay to joke about. That is a big difference for them because we joke about mine all the time. Jain doesn't even think of it as a joke when she calls me her stroke mama. It's just who I am.
I have always used humor to deal with things. If something is too serious to joke about then it must be awful. Laughing helps me know that either things are okay or they soon will be. For a while after my family learned that I had been abused, nobody joked about it. For a bit after my stroke it was the same.
For Roberts dad and all of us around him, it's much too soon for laughter. It's too raw.
But, at least for me, there came a time when the seriousness became like a dark cloud around me. It was almost scary. But let me be clear, some wounds are too deep to ever be joked about. But few things can relieve tension or dark clouds like a good laugh.
1. skip was my dentist and eventually lost his dental license. Now whenever someone in my family needs a dentist, someone always tells us that they know somebody who will work cheap.
2. Once as my therapist was helping me use my walker, she said the word hospital. It reminded me of a line from the movie "Airplane!" and I jut stopped in the middle of the hall and shook with laughter. The others around me had no idea about what I was laughing but they started to laugh because I looked and sounded so funny.
3. When I was in the hospital and unable to speak, I finger spelled the word twice to my mom and niece, Kaitlyn. Neither one of them could get it and they kept saying twiky? It was frustrating but also hilarious!
So no, now may not be appropriate to laugh or joke, but soon we will laugh again. Right now, though, Roberts mom and dad are in that awful first stage of...I don't even know how to explain. Fear? Unknown? Shock? Denial? A sliver of hope that you don't dare really focus on? And seeing Robert hurting just takes my breath away. He was out of town when he heard and hearing him cry over the phone was heart breaking. I wanted to reach through the phone to hug him. Please pray for him. Pray for us all.