Thursday, July 8, 2010

Spa Day

It is hot here in Seattle. We've broken a few records today, and may again tomorrow, although it's supposed to cool down to 90. So, this afternoon I contemplated what to do to relieve Annie's sweltering misery and decided to give her a bath, shampoo and blow dry her hair, then massage scented lotion on her hands, arms and legs and feet. So that's what we did. After her bath, I sat her down on the floor in the living room, plugged in the blow dryer, put the setting on "cool" so it wouldn't add any more heat to our already baking house, and went to work on her long, wet hair. When I was done, I put the blow dryer down on the floor and got ready to comb her hair up into a ponytail.

"No," Annie said adamantly, while reaching over to pick up the blow dryer.
" you want me to keep drying your hair?"
Big smile.
Annie turned around again with her back to me and waited for me to start brushing and drying her hair again.
"Wow," I thought. "It's been three and a half years since we've shared this much communication!"

Since the brain injury, she has been mostly passive, and only says "No, no, no," or expresses any kind of preference when she's mad, hurt, or after you've waited for many minutes for her to respond. And, it isn't unusual for you to wonder if she's really saying what you think she may have said...or not.

Today was different. It was immediate, appropriate, and clear. And she was happy when I immediately, appropriately and clearly understood what she wanted. I think I could get used to this.

I guess sometimes answers to prayer just kind of sneak up on you when you least expect it.


Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. John 16:24


Marilyn said...

How cool is that!?

Anonymous said...

I'm praying for more sneaky answers...


aunt rebecca said...

WOW and Praise the Lord.

Especially because it's her hair - which has been a struggle every day.

Hmmmm...I wonder if she's 'hot' like we "women of a certain age" and just likes the cool air of the blow dryer?

Gretchen said...

Awesome, Jean. You know what? When I worked in the rehab hospital (with adult neuro patients), I would often give "manicures" to ladies with communication issues. Regardless of our ability to express ourselves, I think we want to feel pretty and cared for--and you know what? When people go to the beauty salon, they usually talk, no? It was a nice way to gently start building rapport.