Friday, April 22, 2011

Leaving Day

I've had a hard time bringing myself to writing this blog post because, quite frankly, I don't really want to think about it. As long as I ignore the fact that my delicate, recovering brother and the rest of my family are across the country, I'm completely fine. But here we go, just for you guys...

Trevor got discharged from the hospital on Wednesday, April 20th, National Weed Day. The night before, he kicked everyone out early so he could get some sleep for the big day. When I walked into the room to pick him and my mom up that morning, he was sitting in his wheelchair, bonsai plant in lap, ready to go. He had the biggest smile I've seen on his face since the accident. He was ready to get out of there. And so were we.

On the car ride to the airport, Trevor of course got shotgun. He immediately turned the awful radio music up and danced-- well, wiggled his head around to his own imaginary beat-- the entire way. He would take a few breaks in order to tell me which way to go, like I hadn't been the airport a million times before. It's crazy how six brain surgeries later, he still knows his way around Salt Lake. He then got mad at me for not dropping them off curbside, forgetting that he obviously needed assistance.

Once we were parked, my mom told him to wait for her before getting out. Testing her, he kept sticking his leg in and out of the door, and then tried to get out on his own. My poor mom! He absolutely loves freaking her out.

Trevor was excited to go on the moving walkway, or whatever you call it. The entire time, he was trying to walk super fast and was making this exotic cooing noise, which we're not sure the origin of. It's almost like he was aiming for the Stewie voice from Family Guy, but it sounded more like an elderly woman whining about her missing dentures. When my mom tried to help get him off the escalator, he decided it was a good idea to try to ollie off. He lost his balance and nearly tipped over. At least he thought he was funny because it scared the rest of us to death.

After checking their bags, an airport employee came over with a wheelchair for Trevor. He wheeled Trevor directly to the front of the security check line, which was longer than I've ever seen at the Salt Lake airport. Just another advantage for the handicapped!

This was when we had to say goodbye. I tried to get Trevor to give me a hug, but as usual he refused, giving me a high-five instead. Then I hugged my mom. I couldn't look either one of them in the eyes because I knew I would break down. As soon as I turned around to walk away, I lost it. I'm generally okay with goodbyes, but this was indescribably difficult.

I bawled my eyes out for a good five minutes, and then a sudden feeling of relief took over. I no longer felt obligated to go spend my nights at the hospital instead of doing homework. I now had the opportunity to do what I needed to do in order to get my life together. Since they've been gone, I've driven toward the hospital completely out-of-habit three times. It's weird not having somewhere to go in between classes or during the random breaks in my day. But, it's unreal how much I've gotten done since Wednesday. I've written papers, applied for jobs and figured out that I'm somehow graduating in May!!

The reality that my brother is still recovering from his brain injury, struggling with walking and talking, has completely escaped my thoughts. It's been a really nice two-day mind vacation. And to be honest, I don't think this nightmare will become reality again until I'm back in Michigan in two weeks, which I'm completely okay with. Out of sight, out of mind.

1 comment:

  1. I've enjoyed your are uniquely talented in communications and listening. I can't help but wonder what makes you so close to your brother. Whatever it is, I pray you can bottle and sell it and become a billionaire. Well if that doesn't work out you'll be OK. You're already one of the wealthiest persons I've encountered.