Day 306: 15 Minutes in Heaven Redux

August 18, 2012

On Monday, after all the chaos of the preceding 24 hours, I gave you my full attention for 15 minutes while I listened to you talk. But I didn’t tell you that I was doing this. I simply asked you to tell me how you were feeling. You didn’t need coaxing, but really let loose, which was a change from day 41.

You spilled your guts about our experience in the ER and at the dentist, how you were feeling, how you felt bad for our daughter, how we both learned much from her calm reaction to the situation, how you were glad we had doctors we could trust and good insurance, how you weren’t sure how to deal with our daughter’s change of appearance, how you weren’t sure how she would deal with it, how you were concerned about the way other kids would react to her, etc., etc., etc. An hour later I think you said all you needed to say. I didn’t say two sentences the entire time. Neither did my mind wander. You had my complete attention.

I’m happy that I served as a listening ear. I’m happy that we got through our daughter’s emergency together.

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Day 305: Change of Plans

August 18, 2012

On Sunday (7/29), I had an act planned–I intended to give you 15 minutes to talk about whatever you wanted while I gave you my full attention. I’d done this before. I wanted to do it again because I’ve been convicted lately about my listening habits (I’ve written much about this).

However–and this is a big however–as soon as I parked the car at our place, you informed me by cell phone that our oldest daughter had smashed her teeth on the bathtub and that we needed to take her to the emergency room. So, we took her.

She was brave in the ER, much more so than us. The doctor told us that he couldn’t do anything but that we should see a dentist in the morning. By Monday afternoon, we had a daughter with four less teeth, stitched-up gums, and an adorable new smile.

I did manage to commit my act of love on Sunday, though. Late, late on Sunday night (Monday morning, really), I Facebooked you a message telling you that you handled the teeth situation well and that you acted bravely. When you read this, I think it really affected you because you kept thanking me for the note and saying that you didn’t know why I thought you were so brave because you felt like a wreck the entire night.