I recently flew home after spending a special week in Missouri with my daughter, son-in-law, and two oldest grands, Parker and Khloe. I will see them again for Christmas so that made leaving a little easier.
In my Facebook posts, I’ve been asking for prayer for my brain function for several months. On my trip home I experienced a glimmer of hope. Here are a few snippets.
In the TSA line I talk with a fellow traveler about waiting in lines. He says, “I threw everything in my luggage. I hope nothing falls out.”
“Are you traveling unexpectedly?” I ask.
“No. I was running late with errands and lost track of time. I barely got packed in time to leave.”
As I walk to the United gate at the Tulsa Oklahoma airport, I chat with a family traveling to Washington. The dad says, “Our three-year-old daughter is going to meet her sister today.”
“That’s really special. How old is she?” I ask.
“She’s 18 months. We’ve been waiting for years.”
“What a wonderful Thanksgiving gift. Blessings and have a Happy Thanksgiving,” I say.
On the plane I chitchat with a young lady in the window seat. “Where’s Oral Roberts University? I can’t remember.”
“In Tulsa. I’m flying to Colorado Springs for Thanksgiving. I transferred from a community college and now I’m a junior majoring in English. I plan to become a high school teacher.”
“That’s great. We need excellent Christian teachers.” Just as we land I ask, “Is your fiancé picking you up?”
“No, he has to work. My parents are picking me up.”
Bummer, I think. Waiting until January 2020 to get married must be hard. When I leave the plane I say, “Blessings on your wedding and have a wonderful Thanksgiving.”
These may seem like meaningless conversations, but to me they represent a glimmer of hope. When my brain functions poorly I move into introvert mode to automatically conserve brain energy. That means no unnecessary conversations. Whether I’m in public waiting in a grocery store line, in an airport, or at home, I don’t voluntarily speak. It’s the most challenging aspect of my disability. When my brain function is the worst, I can go weeks without carrying on conversations. I don’t even talk to my Cali kitty.
After living for eight years with my brain disabiity I still I don’t recognize myself. My God-given personality is an extrovert. I talk and talk and then talk some more. There are no strangers in my extrovert world. I’ve been talking since I was a toddler. My mom told me, “The other pre-school moms loved to talk to you. Your language was fascinating to them.”
On my trip home I’m thankful. God gave me a glimpse of my former self.
The flight attendant hands me a Diet Coke and cup with ice. “Have you been super busy?” I ask.
He sighs. His face says it all. “I get to be home for Thanksgiving.”
“In Denver. I fly right back here from SFO and then I’m off.”
“Enjoy your family. I hope you have a blessed Thanksgiving.”
It’s been a long time since I’ve initiated conversations with strangers. I don’t know if I’ll have another good day tomorrow, but I’m thankful for the blessings of today. They offer me a glimmer of hope.