We headed up Cascades Lakes Highway after church last weekend without a particular destination in mind, hoping to catch some sunshine at a lake before they close the highway for the winter. We landed at Sparks Lake – and it was beautiful, as usual. The ice covered shores were a fun surprise, and the kids (and Brett!) spent far too much time walking on it. The kids screamed and laughed, I worried constantly and nagged everyone to be more careful, and everyone accused me and being “no fun.”
It was normal. It was sunny and gorgeous, and it was just a regular, everyday adventure.
I haven’t been sure if I should start writing publicly about our life now, or about the journey to get here, because, for the most part, days are normal now. We are busy with our kids, with work, with paying bills, and compromising on who is going to do the dishes.
But the way that we have to navigate the world now is different. It’s harder in some ways, and in others, it’s more enlightening. A sunny day at the lake now helps me to see a moment in a snapshot I want to sear into my memory now - a portrait of Brett, standing unassisted on a frozen lake, laughing hysterically with our kids. Laughing, as it turns out, does not require words, and I am so grateful.
I thought that I needed to wait until I had this all figured out to start writing about it. And I think, in some ways, I did need to wait. I needed to wait until the ground stopped shaking and my head stopped spinning. I needed to sit in my grief for a while. I needed to be sure that God was still on my side, even in such darkness.
So here it is: a blog about life post-stroke, written not by the person who has suffered the stroke, but by me, the one who has walked alongside him throughout his recovery. I wish I could ask him to tell me exactly what it feels like to be him. But for now, I’ll do my best to tell you what it feels like to be me - and what we are learning about marriage, love, family, and God through this impossibly hard season.