"Some days are hard days," we told Lydia today. "Today is a hard day for you." Lydia's emotional responses were even stronger and more regular than yesterday. As our case manager from Key Rehab, Jean explained, Lydia's emotional centre is now activated. While this is a necessary part of her healing, and we can be thankful that she has known joy for so long, it is a very painful one to see. The good news is that she will not likely remember much of this phase of recovery either. We will, so it was a hard day for us as parents too.
Lydia was fully aware of her limitations today, and her frustrations and anger, caused her to lash out uncontrollably. From repeatedly kicking, or slamming her hand on her tray, or flailing her arms about, to sobbing, she has expressed many emotions today. We encouraged her often that she would not always feel these frustrations, and that she has made so much progress already, and that she will continue to recover. But as her short term memory is limited, she does not remember these encouragements from one emotional bout to the next.
We also know that some of her agitation today was due to sleep deprivation. Lydia usually sleeps very well at night, but for whatever reason, she slept very little for the past two nights. Today, she might have been operating on 3 hours sleep, instead of 10. For as tired as she was, she was unable to sleep during the day: agitation over ruled rest. My parents who are with her at Holland Bloorview this evening, have reported that she is asleep. Please pray for restful sleep tonight and all nights. Pray too, that Lydia senses the Lord's presence with her in these days (and possibly weeks or months) of turbulent emotions. Pray that her personality, which can be altered in this phase - many brain injury patients become depressed - is protected. May she recover to be the kind, vibrant, fun loving girl we long to have with us all the time.
We are so thankful that most of our time with Lydia at home for the past week, was full of joy, progress and family unity. The emotional outbursts of yesterday and today were hard for all of us to experience. With Lydia's return to Bloorview, we are back to the divided life during the week, so we ask for the peace that passes understanding to again sustain us, and the God of all strength to be our refuge.
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Ps 34:18. May He be near to us all.