Saturday, June 7, 2008

Waxing Philosophical... and Kung Fu Panda?!

Dan and I go to the movies almost every Friday night. The local theater in our town allows people with disabilities in for free – and so Dan and I like to go to a lot of movies. Last night we saw “Kung Fu Panda” and I thought it was awesome... it was funny and had an underlying message that has caused me to ponder.... (how can one ponder over a cartoon.... hmmm) Even though the scenery was hand drawn, it reminded me of China, the big tall temple buildings, the rope bridges, the noodle shop and the dumplings... It was fun for me to think of the wonderful people that we met in China that we grew to love. We wish that we could go back and see them all.... There were so many good people there from the nurses, therapists and doctors to the people that we met in the hospital. Going to China was a rich experience for us and the experience has forever changed us.

For many years we have not had association with others that have had serious accidents in their lives. I didn't really gain much strength from the early support groups that we were encouraged to participate in. I was expecting Dan to get better and every one else was trying to face the reality of never getting better, so needless to say, we ended up not participating. I am sure that I missed a wonderful opportunity to meet many really great people.

Those of you who know us may know that Dan is much more social than I am. He treasures his relationships with so many people and it means a lot to him to go visit and know how they are doing. I, on the other hand, get dragged into my work-day living and really only associate with family and close friends. I do enjoy my friendships and relationships – I just find it harder to reach out because of the other pressures that are in my life. Much of “keeping in touch” with others comes through Dan's emails, texts and communications than with my own.

I have been thinking a lot about our friends that we met as a result of our China adventure and Dan's stem cell treatments. Many new friendships have developed that we cherish. We think of Tori – who was the first inspiration to us all as we watched their courageous story, Missy and Travis that we have come to know since to Chris and Koo, Ty and Renee, Glen and Monnie, Jack and Dorene, Gary, Lorraine and Gary Jr (the wonderful young man that helped Dan climb the Great Wall!), Norm and Marlene, Stephen from Florida, our Aussie friends (Judy, Nichole, Maria, Dennis, Diana, Nathan) to all the doctors (Dr. Wisdom), therapists (Lily – the slave driver!) Nancy, nurses (Esther, Shirlene, Sunny, Kelly, Tina, Jingjing...) to the wonderful hospital staff (Diana, Wendy, Kamee, Kotan, Suzie, Isabelle) to the wonderful people we met at church (Mac & Janet Coleman, Phil & Donna Coleman, Steve & Kristie Hendrix, Donya Harvey and family... ). The list could go on – but these are a few that we think of when we reminisce on our wonderful adventure to China....

Dan is doing just great – he is working out and trying hard to improve. He goes up to Sandy three times a week and spends the full day at a therapy center called Neuroworx. Many who have seen him since the China trip may wonder if there is any progress... (and back to my pondering from Kung Fu Panda... where we learn that there is no secret ingredient to become the great Kung Fu master – it is only found in one's beliefs and perceptions of what their potential is...) Some may say – why hasn't the secret ingredient (the stem cells) worked already?! That was sure a long journey and a lot of money and time – where is the benefit?? ... and all we can answer is that we are trying our best to make an improvement come to pass – but it may take time, and perhaps the greatest secret ingredient we have is our belief that God will bless us as we make the effort on our own.

I am not sure what the end of this story will be... I can say that I feel good about the journey and that we trust in God enough to know that the outcome will be a blessing in our lives. We know that we have been blessed already by the wonderful people we have met. Out hearts go out to them in each of their situations and we pray that they might have some of the wonderful blessings that we have experienced. We have a desire to share our faith and beliefs with them in a hope that their lives may be blessed as ours have been. There is no doubt that life could be better – but let us not always be looking so hard for a better life that we forget to stop and count the blessings of the life we already have. There can be joy and peace, even in the midst of great challenge and sometimes it is the greatest challenges that drive us to find the anchor and the peace that we need so desperately.

So – my recommendation for the day – go see the movie (Kung Fu Panda)! I hope it will help you to believe in your potential – and also that you will have a good laugh and release any tension from the week you may have just had! Dan and I send our love and best wishes to all – we so appreciate your support and continued prayers in our behalf. It is because of you that our burdens are light, and we appreciate all of your thoughts and prayers in our behalf.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear LaNae and Dan,

I love this post. I can relate to a lot of things you wrote and feel the same in so many ways.
We are such early movers on this stem cell… we do not understand how and why it may or may not work yet, but as you, I feel it was so worth trying.

I think of you often as well and in many ways closer to you and others in similar situation when times at tough dealing with Chris injury.

With love,