We’ve all heard the saying, “hindsight is 2020”. For me, this took on a whole new meaning after the year our family experienced. 2020 sucked. The year didn’t start out so bad. We heard of this thing called COVID19 spreading in China, but wasn’t too concerned here in the United States. Then, all of the sudden, everything shut down. We were encouraged to stay at home, limit our contact with others. I couldn’t go into the office to work and had to work from home. Okay, not all bad.
As it turns out, I really enjoy working from home. Something I never had the opportunity to do. So, I set up a home office. I arranged it for the best productivity possible. I started holding online meetings and training events. This COVID thing had its perks.
On July 6th, everything changed. Realizing my youngest son was not out of bed yet I decided to wake him up. As I woke him, he complained of a really bad headache. I told him to get up and drink some water. Suddenly, he began to panic and said he couldn’t move. He couldn’t feel the left side of his body. At first, I thought he must have laid wrong or something. However, it was apparent this was not that simple. I immediately called 911.
The paramedics arrived in less than 10 minutes. I went to let them in and when we returned to my son’s room, he was unresponsive. He was rushed to the emergency room where it was discovered he had bleeding on his brain. The ER doctor informed his mother and I that he would probably not survive. Our world began to crash.
He was airlifted to another hospital to undergo emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain. During the surgery, it was discovered he suffered a ruptured Arteriovenous Malformation or AVM, causing massive bleeding and a stroke. My son is 17 years old and just had a stroke.
For the next two months our son was in extensive inpatient therapy at Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, Maryland. My wife and I stayed in a hotel and took turns being with him since we could both stay due to COVID restrictions. Following the two months he had another surgery to remove the AVM. He then started more therapy in Baltimore for two more months. During this time, our son went from having to be lifted out of the bed with lift and placed in a wheelchair to being fully independent and walking on his own. There is still a long road to recovery ahead, but he gets better every day.
So, back to hindsight is 2020. Looking back on this year, hindsight allows me to reflect rather than respond. It is through that reflection that blessings are revealed. How can anything about this be a blessing, you ask? For starters, our son is alive. He is on the road to recovery. He attacks his therapy with a vengeance and a positive attitude. He is our hero.
Despite the tragedy, our family has become closer. We were already a close family, but through this tragedy we truly learned to lean on one another and our faith. We’ve grown individually and together. As we stand at the beginning of a new year, I don’t know what is in store for us. However, I do know we can handle anything life throws at us.
My growth journey during 2020 may be different than yours, but we all have a chance for a new beginning. No matter what you have been through, look back on the past year and make the decision to begin something new. Develop a new habit, stretch yourself out of your comfort zone and try something you have never done before. Grow closer to the ones you love. Whatever it is, begin something new.
So, this is part or my new beginning for the new year. I am committed to writing this blog twice a week. I will begin with a series on growing through crisis. I hope you will come back and visit. Growth is a continuous journey. We determine our destination, plot our path of travel, and check our azimuth along the way to correct our course. My promise to you, my readers, is to share something that you will be able to use immediately in your own growth journey. I look forward to our time together.
Until next time, safe travels and check your azimuth.