The avalanche of love and support as we have been telling people about Tim’s diagnosis has been amazing. Each and every person has brought me to a new place of God’s love and care. So many people have cried for and with us. Thank you everyone. It has carried me through a very difficult week.
I have appreciated the questions that people have asked (for the most part, anyway). I have really thought about one question in particular. I was talking to a Sparks leader and he asked, “So, what’s your new normal?” What an amazingly appropriate question! I’ve spent quite a few days thinking on that.
I think our new normal is still the same as what we’ve been doing in some ways, but very different in others. Tim is still going to work full-time, we are still participating in everything as we have been, we still eat three times a day, have dirty laundry and dishes pile up. We are still “normal” people that laugh together and bicker and argue. Some things never change.
But our new normal now includes Tim’s walking stick. We got this for him last Tuesday about 6 pm. By bedtime, he was walking with it everywhere. I haven’t really seen him go anywhere without it now. He feels much more stable with it and just last night mentioned how glad he is to have it. I think it will allow him to feel like he can continue being “normal” for quite a while longer.
Our new normal includes moving his shaver, toothbrush and toothpaste to the downstairs bathroom. This way, he doesn’t have to go back upstairs after breakfast to finish getting ready for work. Since we have the facility on the main floor, he can save himself a trip up and down the stairs. Another way to look for safer ways to do things.
And our new normal includes finding new ways for Tim and the boys to have fun together. Just last night, I was crying with Simon as his brilliant little mind understood completely that Daddy’s leg isn’t ever going to get better and that he would never get to play “Apple Tree” with Daddy again. Apple Tree is a game that Tim used to play with all three boys where he would be the lumberjack and pretend to ax at their legs. They would fall down like a felled tree and he would pick them up from the floor and toss them onto the couch. Not that they would have played this game much anymore, but Simon has now learned what it means to lose a part of your childhood.
Our new normal. Grieving for what we are losing as we lose it. Transitioning from “ours” to “mine”. Adjusting to a progressively limited way of life. Our new normal is change.