"The Early Days" represent the first several months of our marriage. So almost all of the posts for the next few weeks will take place in that time period. It was a period of INTENSE, multifaceted training for both of us. Combine that with some time spent trying to win over Elaina, and I had my hands full. Needless to say, it also tested, and streghtened our marriage. Tony and Elaina attended the Ottawa Area Center every day, and like any other school, there were parent teacher days. One of Tony's teachers, a very petite thing, called me aside during during my first such visit and shared some life changing secrets with me. In her opinion, Tony had been "coddled" for way to long. He was, as she put it, a spoiled, manipulative child. She believed that if someone, namely me, worked with Tony, he could be taught how do most all the required daily chores, like showering and dressing. Now the way she put this it was not a suggestion. More like I expect to see changes before me meet again, DAD! So off I went. That night at dinner, I reviewed all this with Geri and she said to go for it. She always gets this little funny half smile when she says that. I told her I would tackle showering first. So later that night we headed for the shower. Once I had Tony undressed and in the shower, I took and put the hair shampoo in his hand and then with my hands started to make him wash his head. No biggie right? Wrong. Tony in his own way understood that I was trying to change his lifestyle and he began to scream like I was cutting off his fingers one by one. I couldn't believe it. In my mind I was thinking Geri would divorce me. But my mind was set, and I was not going to give up. I made Tony put the soap in his hand and then I would take his hand and help him wash. All the time he would be screaming. This process did not take as long as the "pinch and turn training". In less than 30 days Tony was showering himself. Just get his water set set to the right temperature and send him in. What a piece of cake showering him became for me and really good for Tony as he now had learned new skills. It also confirmed what the young lady had told me, Tony was smart enough to learn, and so was I.
In all of this, what really impressed me was my wife. Day after day, listening to Tony scream, she never interfered. She just supported me and let me do what I had determined was best for our son. Brings to mind a Proverbs 31 woman...one who supports her husband. It was response I was not used to and it was an incredible booster to our relationship.
My One Word: 2016 and 2017
2 months ago