We are pleased to report that Ryder’s slow-and-steady progress continues to be slow and steady. Most notably, his shoulder appears less “sharp” which means he is regaining muscle tone and strength in his deltoids. This is important because those are the muscles that pull the shoulder up in the correct position, and make it possible to lift the arm. Here is a side-by-side of the front and back of his shoulder that I took in March.And here’s one I took two days ago.I know what you’re thinking: They look almost identical. I freaked out a little at first too. But here’s the thing… pretty much right after that first set of pictures was taken, his shoulder dropped significantly, and jutted forward quite a bit. While it didn’t cause any pain, it certainly caused concern because the weight of his arm was doing quite a number on those tendons. If they stay over-stretched for any length of time it can cause permanent issues down the road, even if he does regain full use of his arm. Through continued prayer and a variety of different kinds of therapy, we are relieved to see that some tone is returning to his shoulder, and it’s in a much more natural position than it was just a couple of months ago.
Ryder’s favorite form of therapy is strength training with our personal trainer. Ric does an incredible job of packing in lots of “work” masked as fun competition. They do crazy things like Ninja Rolls, Rolling High-Fives, and Slug Crawling races.And after the work is done, they get to “play” games like Foam Roller Bowling or football (which still involves plenty of work because Ryder has to catch the ball with both hands). We used to joke that Ryder was our quarterback and Evan was our linebacker. With the speed and accuracy of some of this little monkey’s (left-handed) passes, that may actually become a reality!On another note, there’s something I haven’t talked a whole lot about because I haven’t really recognized it until recently. Or maybe I recognized it, but didn’t think I would still be dealing with it six months later. Anxiety. It’s kind of a buzzword, really. People either get all worked up when you mention it and suggest the newest medication on the market; or they run and hide because they deal with it too, and they’re ashamed. If you’ve known me for any length of time you know that I avoid medication like the plague, and running-and-hiding isn’t really my thing when it comes to the trials of life, so here we go…
Six months ago, we ended up in the hospital with yet another unsolvable medical mystery… only this time it happened to be my kid laying in the bed, and not me. The beeping machines, the 24/7 merry-go-round of doctors and nurses, the driving back and forth from Modesto to Roseville, the sleep deprivation, and on and on and on… they took their toll.
I suppose it’s possible that I might have been a bit of a control freak before all this happened <ahem! that’s a lie.> But since then, my tolerance for crowds, chaos, repetitive noises, clutter, and major schedule changes has taken a nosedive. I haven’t experienced any kind of sweaty, heart-racing panic attacks (except maybe once), but I find that I need a calm, quiet environment here and there throughout the day or I totally lose my junk. And if you’ve read this far and you’re thinking “But you have two busy boys, a husband, and a crazy horse-dog… is there such a thing as calm, quiet, and clutter-free?” The answer is “No… and now you see the problem. I’d like my straight jacket to be pink and sparkly, thankyouverymuch.”
All of this is neither here nor there… just sharing the truth of what’s happening behind the scenes.
And through it all, God is still faithful. We can rejoice in the fact that we are still experiencing progress, and we wait expectantly and prayerfully for the complete healing we trust our Lord to provide.
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Philippians 4:6, NLT