Tuesday, October 30, 2007


Today is the BIG DAY! Cast-Away Day! Freedom!

We've been counting the days down to ChellBell getting her cast off and getting back to the writing-with-your-right-hand normal kind of life that we knew a month ago.

ChellBell sat there like a champ as they cut the cast off and pulled those pins out with pliers. They even put that pink cast in a bag for her to take home. Not sure what we'll do with it -- maybe put it in shadow box to hang on the wall.

Hooray! Finally cast-free!

And then the moment came. She had to move that arm, which hadn't moved in a month. And she started to cry -- you know, the crocodile tears that make even Daddy well up.

She cried because she was scared.
And it felt weird.
And it hurt.
And then she begged her doctor to put her cast back on.

Can you believe it? That big huge heavy cast. She asked him to put it back on!

I sat there being rational with big tears in my eyes, wanting nothing else but for ChellBell to be comfortable, and then I was struck with the big picture of Cast-Away Day.

If we all look at ourselves (and some don't have to look as far as others), we will all find a big, pink, heavy cast that needs to come off. You know, that thing that weighs you down. That thing that you carry around that stands between you and freedom. It's that unhealthy relationship. It's the dysfunctional work environment. It's the bad habit. It's the bitterness or score-keeping.

It's the thing that is heavy to carry but somehow becomes comfortable and safe. And we know we need to give it up -- or have it cut off -- so we can regain full functionality and freedom.

But shedding those "casts" is so hard.
It's scary.
And it feels weird.
And it hurts.
So we keep it on and carry it around.

The doctor had great instructions for ChellBell's progress. "The arm will not regain mobility in a day. Or even a week. It's going to be weeks, or even a month. But you've got to take baby steps. Every day, stretch a little more. And when you don't think you can go any further, press a little bit more before you quit. "

So that's life. Full recovery and freedom don't come instantly. Progress is hard and uncomfortable. It takes baby steps.

But if we can push through all of that, we can get there. In time.

And one day, before we know it, we'll be stretching our arms out fully and looking back to celebrate Cast-Away Day.

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