When we walked into church and sat down for the first time after his surgery, I realized we were THAT family. You know the one. Where people watch you walk in and they have horror behind their eyes at the thought of being in your shoes. Then they quietly bow their heads and begin silently praying to God- thanksgiving that it's not their problem to face. I've done it before, I admit it. I caught the eye of a friend across the chapel who tossed me a knowing half grin as if to say 'I wish it wasn't you guys. I'm so sorry.' We wished the same, but nothing can ever be wished away; it turns out.
I did think our family would have at least a decade's break from hardship. The grief of accepting and struggle to learn of my oldest having High Functioning Autism about broken us in half. The same year we were adjusting to life with our third child I was hit hard with severe post partum depression (plus) while Mike (all the while) was traveling for work on weekdays. I thought we had our fill of climbs uphill, both ways, barefoot in the snow. Nope. Apparently not.
Even still, today I want to tell everyone we're okay. I want to show up to church and hand out fliers. Sign language it to the masses during the opening hymn. Assure and comfort every wrinkled forehead that asks about his brain. You see, as weeks went on he had adrenal failure and we found out most of his pituitary gland was removed with the tumor, it still turns out alright. He will always take hormone supplements and testosterone injections, but it could be worse. I mean, to tell you the honest truth right now I don't think either of us have been happier or closer with one another. Sure, it's mostly due to the fact that Mike now sees me through thick testosterone-colored glasses and can't keep his eyes (or hands) off me. We liken it to the mind of a 16 year old boy seeing porn for the first time. His thrill for me is nonstop and the attention is as if I have become a celebrity overnight.
It also helps that I put on some healthy weight gain by eating my way through the stress. Some of this gain happened to spill generously into the boulder holder area. I like to consider that another of the Lord's tender mercies. Each morning when I get dressed I offer up a wink of thanks. We can now plan on something else to spend his annual bonus on instead of a plastic surgeon!
So don't feel bad for The Fullers. We really ARE doing okay. Better than before, actually. We're kind of like a coupla blissful newlyweds, really. And if you happen to see scratch marks on either of us don't be alarmed. We didn't get a cat, it's just his synthetic testosterone bringing us closer together.
Posted by liz at 3:10 PM
I made it known to everyone that I liked him. I would stare at him all during class and wait for his attention. Somehow I was born with a great deal of self-confidence. Probably about 60% more than I should have, but I know no other way to go about my life than to pretend I am awesome. Sometimes it has led to situations that are not ideal, like in this post, but it has also served me very well in job interviews. So, I just go with it as much as possible. It never once occurred to me that this boy, Arnold, would not like me back. The chance mistakenly never entered my mind. When he didn't write notes back, I assumed he was awe struck by me and speechless. Or maybe he had horrible handwriting? When I finagled his phone number from a friend and called him, it never occurred to me he was choosing to not call me back. I just figured he wasn't allowed to use the phone. Or maybe he never got my daily messages?
One day we all arrived to our 3rd grade class to find the desks were moved. We all entered the room eagerly to see where our newly assigned seats were, but were instructed to gather around the snack table first. The teacher brought muffins to class so we could be more comfortable with the change. No one really ate the muffins for some reason, but I thought they tasted good and had several. I also finished 3 of my friends'. After the snack, we went to find our desks. They were connected in a way to make a giant U shape so we could all face the teacher in the front of the room. GUESS who sat directly across from me?
I did everything I could all day, everyday to get this boy's attention. How my teacher never pulled me aside to teach me a little about grace is beyond me. One day I came up with a clever idea to make absolutely certain he was aware of my affection. I figured it would at least get me a phone call. While the teacher was blathering on about something and all the other children were taking notes and watching her, I was secretly writing on the bottom of my pink high-top Pro-Wing shoes with permanent marker. As soon as it was time to take out our books, I leaned back in my chair and kicked my feet up on my desk like a boss. On the bottom of one shoe in large print read: I LOVE and on the other shoe read:
I kept my feet up on the desk until he noticed. He immediately blushed and a huge smile flashed across his face. My tummy swarmed with happy wiggles. Though he tried to hold it in, his laughter at the sheer unexpectedness of my display got him chuckling. I knew I had won him over. Big time. No other girl could have thoughts of such a brave thing. For sure he wants to marry me, I thought.
Well, his giggling led to my nervous giggling. My friends were amazed I would do such a thing. And then a curious thing happened that would redden even the most outgoing of spirits. While balancing my bum on the fiberglass seat of my orange chair, a loud fart reverberated off the seat and shot into the air.
It was so loud and high-pitched, there was no hiding it. Nor the source. I quickly pulled my legs off the desk (mostly to avoid more farts- I would have left my feet up there all day to amuse my dear
The boy never called me. I continued to crush on him the following year, but lost interest in him shortly after.
We crossed paths in a college course and he told me I looked like Liv Tyler! How awesome of a compliment was that? She is WAY hotter than Winnie any day!
To his day, I haven't since touched a bran muffin.
Posted by liz at 5:35 PM