“Knowing how to live is not something we have to teach children. Knowing how to live is something we have to be careful not to take away from them.” Colin Beavan
Yesterday, Vernon continued to move his hands and respond to directions. Justine and my parents visited in the afternoon. He really started trying to communicate with them, squeezing their hands and moving his lips as if to say something. The determination in his face was very clear. He obviously knew what was happening and was trying to hard to talk. But with the trach, he is only able only to move his mouth without sound. I am going to talk to the doctors tomorrow about moving him into a 4-guage, so we can begin to get him either off the trach completely or at least begin some kind of speech therapy.
The fact that he was trying was immediately clear to Justine, our 4-year old. Here is a little video of her explaining what she thinks he is trying to say.
I am fascinated by the way that children deal with these things. She is so comfortable in her father’s presence and doesn’t seem to mind the slowness of recovery like even I do. She sees he is sick…in a place that will heal him…and he is getting better. That’s it. So simple. None of the worries and what-ifs that adults think about.
She is spot on with her words too…her interpretation of what her father might be telling her. Of course that is what his heart is saying. “I love you and I love to hear your voice and I want to be your friend forever.” Isn’t that what a father would want to tell his children at the heart of everything?
Today, Vernon had to have a procedure to replace his dialysis tube, so he will be staying in the hospital a little longer. He was pretty tired from that so his hand motions weren’t as strong.
He has started to track movement: he is able to follow voices and people around the room with his eyes. I don’t know how well he can see, but when I put pictures of the children in front of his face and moved them, he certainly seemed focused and followed them with his eyes.
(To Maki: see you are still a part of your dad’s life and healing, even though you are away for awhile. I think he is ready for your video tomorrow. We love you!)
“Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh, and the greatness which does not bow before children.” Kahlil Gibran