Even I Have Moments that are so Wrong and Out of Place

September 18, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Posted in ACL recovery, attitudes, Move to Park City Utah | Leave a comment
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I wanted to share my feelings about Jeanee because of course I don’t hate her. I love her. I wanted to share that even a “great” mom who has been working with parents for over 20 years as a counselor in all kinds of capacities has moments that are so wrong and out-of-place. My feeling of hatred was 100% misplaced anger- And lucky for me and Jeanee she never felt it. But let me tell you this- That moment of hatred at Jeanee really helped me to help her, which I’ll get to later.

By the time I picked up Jeanee from school I was well past any feelings of hatred toward her. We had a great ride home. She was very happy with her classes. It was her fun day- art, dance, and science. And she had lunch with a ski friend she had made a couple of years ago. All good.

So back to the screaming that was going on in the morning. Oh joy! Jamie was not any more hurt than before. She was just awake knowing that it was real. She really had blown out her knee again. I put ice on her, gave her meds, and fed her. She was now asking all the questions I had been asking myself. I gave her the same silent treatment I gave myself. I didn’t, and still don’t, have any answer why a person who did everything possible to be strong and ready physically and who is a really fun and happy kid would have this happen to her- again.

After a few minutes Jamie calmed down. Well, she didn’t actually stop being upset. She just became bitter. The meds began to take effect and she dozed off. Right after I got back with Jeanee, I had to keep things going smoothly for Jeanee and Jilly. Needy mom had to call others to help her- The girls needed a ride to the ramps. Well, it wasn’t really necessary, but I did think it much better than having them stay home and do nothing. Jamie and I left to go to physical therapy and the DR. She cried her way into physical therapy. Her wooden leg moved 15 degrees- and was constantly in pain. While waiting for the Dr, Jamie stoically took out her kindle and read.

As is the usual case, sometime much later than our appointment, we entered the space that just might give Jamie her freedom. There was anticipation, hope, deep desire.

The Dr and his assistant were pleasant and efficient. They had three other re-ruptured ACL’s that very day. We were in good hands. At least that was good. And with great care the Dr tested the ACL. Nothing. Loose- no tight locking. It was gone. Jamie felt her life was over. Doomed to be someone who never was.

During the day I forgot-I did go shopping and get more food. I also got up the courage to call my family. Not easy. And her father. It took all my abilities to tell him. I knew he would be crushed. I had to hold onto that. And not listen to the words that came out of his mouth. All he was doing was being crushed. “How did it happen?” he demanded. “Oh my poor Jamie- hurt.” is what he meant. “Didn’t anyone tell her to stop?” he barked. “I can’t stand it.” He meant. And so on for about five minutes. Finally I said, ” I know you are as upset as I am about this. Please give Jamie the respect to not call her till she is ready.” And instead of continuing to grill me on what happened and what was I going to do, he said OK and let me hang up the phone.

Dinner that night was terse. The food- who knows- I didn’t even have a pantry with supplies in it or a freezer filled with home made meals. The conversation was about as palatable sawdust. But we made it through.

That night Jamie had a huge change. She made it clear she did not want pity. She was sure her life was over. “What’s the point? No matter what I do I will never be able to really feel free again. I am now just trapped in a body that can almost do something, but will always stop just before- scared to go on.”

At this point something snapped in me. No pity for sure. But this kid was taking this a bit too far. For God’s sake she was walking, talking, and angry. But her life was far from over. This was too much for me to take any longer.

I put on a funny movie from netflicks and began to move that block of wood. I massaged from the foot down. I wiggled the toes. And I talked.

“You know Mommy- there is no point in doing this. The Jamie that was injured is dead.”
“I know. And now there is a new Jamie.”
“Well, this Jamie has no optimism in her.”
“That’s OK. She can be a pessimistic, negative, nay sayer for all I care.’
Yeah, well there really is no point in doing anything.”
“Look here- You may hate everything right now, And I don’t blame you. But you have an obligation to this new Jamie. You must give this new Jamie the same chance the old Jamie had. And unless you kill yourself or have a fatal accident you have very little choice but to live for about another 90 to 100 years.”
“What’s the point? I’ll never be happy. And this will haunt me for the rest of my life.”
“So you think that George (My uncle who was in the Olympics twice and injured both times who went on to become a multibillionaire) was haunted his whole life that he didn’t make it all the way in skiing?”
“No but”
“There is no BUT. He lived on. And made a wonderful life for himself. He is one of the MOST happy and satisfied people I have ever known. Oh, and how about your Aunt Eleanor? Over 80 and hiking all these mountains with the ease and energy of someone your age?”
Yeah, I know.”
“So no pity. You owe this new Jamie a leg that moves, is strong, and will keep up with her energy- happy or angry. That doesn’t matter. You can’t give her a gimp leg.”

And for almost 48 hours I had to keep moving her leg, keep talking to her with strength, rationality, passion, and absolutely no compassion, sympathy or pity.

Still I couldn’t leave her alone. She was in an acute depression. Those days were exhausting! But the worst was yet to come.

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