Today was the big race. Team members wrote “For Corey” on the back of their calves and forearms. Corey was waiting for them at the finish line. I was apprehensive about the noise from the bands and her comfort levels with the thousands of spectators attending. She handled the crowds better than I could have hoped for. She was anxious but never acted out. Thank you again to the runners and all our sponsors!
Going into Philly last night and this morning wore Corey out! Fortunately, she napped when we got home and it was just the two of us for the rest of the evening. I love the quiet time we share. We sit at the kitchen table, chat, play games and/or play on the computer. Tonight’s game was more like a memory puzzle.
At any given moment Corey’s memory jumps from middle school to high school. In fact, I can tell how old she thinks she is by the topics she chooses and the memories she describes. Every once in awhile she will see, hear or think of something that jolts her to what I’ve labeled as ‘Moments of Clarity’.
The puzzle piece that she focused on tonight was my Johnson and Wales University sweatshirt she won for me during the Career Exploration weekend the summer before the accident. Seeing my sweatshirt triggered many questions and conversation. She momentarily found puzzle pieces that seemed to fit high school and memories of friends. She asked to go on facebook. We went through pictures and posts that sparked more conversation.
At one point she was very quiet; extremely pensive. I asked her what was wrong. She pointed to her head with her pointer finger and gestured half a circle stating she was thinking. “About what” I asked. She replied, “Lots of things”. “I’m thinking about my brother, when did I see him last”? “When will I go to college”? “Did I play sports”? (in response to her girlfriends birthday) “She was always older first. I wonder if she had a fun day”.
I watched Corey concentrate and process the questions circling her mind. I can only imagine what she must be thinking. In my minds eye I envision her seeing a 1,000 piece puzzle in front of her. The pieces are scattered across a tabletop. Some are facing up and some are facing down. She picks up a piece, tries to interpret the clue from the color and the shape and searches for its companion piece to decode the hidden picture.
Corey each puzzle piece you pick up will fill you with an assortment of emotions; happy, sad, frustrated, confused, angry and/or peaceful. Don’t be afraid to keep selecting. Ask questions and share the story that comes to mind. The most important piece of the grand picture your putting back together is that you keep reaching out and within to find the answers. You will finish this puzzle some day Corey; it’s a Matter of Time! xoxo