Friday, May 5, 2017

Celebrating the End: Toilet Training

The backpack gapes open, a black hole that consistently holds more than I think it will.

This day I'm after one thing - a packet of papers tucked into the communication notebook that travels back and forth between home and Big C's therapy center.

I pull out the packet and flip through page after page of data. The data tells a story; it would sketch a picture if I were to graph it.

I like these sheets of data. Their story has a happy ending (who doesn't like that?!), and the picture they paint is a masterpiece of Hard Work riding off into the sunset, its victory settled. Yep, I definitely like these sheets a lot!

Some celebrations are noisy affairs, complete with cheering, high fives, maybe some confetti thrown in.

Others are quiet - a heart so filled with joy and thankfulness and relief that no outward expression can rightly celebrate the joy.

This day the celebration is immense. And it is quiet. Of course, in the months leading up to today, we've filled the house with high fives, clapping, and cheers.

But today I celebrate, and instead of confetti, it's whispered prayers of thankfulness that mark the end.

I quietly slide the data sheets into the drawer. And that's that. We are done with them. I suppose I could just as well throw them away, but I'm not ready for that yet.

This journey of toilet training was hard.

Discouragement and doubts tagged along. It took several years, and then several intense months, to cross the finish line.

These sheets remind me of God's faithfulness and strength, and from time to time I want to look back. To remember. (And maybe yell out a great big cheer every so often that we actually reached the end!!!! Technically, we still have one more hurdle - we're still waiting for Big C to tell us when he needs to go. But really, compared to what life was like a few months ago, I'm so okay with that part not being perfect yet.)

I wish I could ask Big C about his feelings on reaching the end. He seems rather impressed with himself and his independence. But at the same time, he now seems pretty matter of fact about the whole thing, which I guess is where most of us eventually end up when it comes to the bathroom part of life!

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