As I have been telling my No Longer Quivering story here on the blog, I keep repeating that Warren was “difficult” to talk to because his communication skills were extremely poor. This afternoon, I was reminded of an incident which I really want to share here because it’s an excellent example of the situation we were dealing with.
This is actually funny in an oh-that’s-so-pathetic sort of way.
Three of my girls (Berea, Chassé, and Hazelle) have a rare genetic bone condition which they inherited from me. They receive treatment at the Shriners Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis ~ about 7-8 hours away from our home. All three girls see two different orthopedic specialists twice a year ~ Spring and Fall. I always took the girls myself while Warren stayed behind to look after the younger children.
About 7 years ago, we made the usual Spring trip and when we returned, I gave Warren a report on how the check-ups had gone. Chassé was going to need surgery (again) ~ x-rays had revealed that on both legs, a bone spur on the growth plate of her fibula had caused it to grow slower than the tibula ~ this was causing her ankles to turn in which resulted in pain and difficulty in walking. The plan was to insert screws into the growth plates of her tibulas ~ thereby stunting the growth of the normally-growing bones in order to allow the slow-growing fibulas to catch up.
I explained to Warren that I felt a bit hesitant about the decision to deliberately stunt the normal, healthy growth of the tibulas ~ but the other option (to leave the bones to keep growing without surgical interference) was not so great either.
Whenever I returned from a trip, I was always super busy trying to catch up on things around the house and with the business. So ~ a while later, I was at the computer working when Warren came into the room ~ obviously flustered and upset. “Talk to my dad,” he insisted as he shoved the phone in my direction.
It wasn’t exactly a convenient time for me, so I asked him why he wanted me to talk to his dad right that very minute. Warren stumbled out something about telling his sister about the upcoming surgery and then she told their dad ~ and now he was very upset and … “Here …” he insisted, shaking the phone at me, “just talk to him. Please!”
I took the phone and said, “Hello,” to my father-in-law, Kent.
In an angry and befuddled voice, he demanded to know ~ “What’s is this about the doctors planning to cut off Berea’s feet?!!!”
“Huh?” was about all I could manage ~ I really couldn’t imagine what that was all about.
“Warren told us that the doctors in Minnesota are going to cut off Berea’s feet.”
LOL! Inside, I was just cracking up. I was used to Warren getting things all twisted around, so was not at all surprised about this particular mix-up.
“Well …” I began very calmly ~ really hoping he couldn’t detect the amusement in my voice, “first of all, it’s not Berea who needs surgery ~ it’s Chassé…” I went on to explain about the procedure which they had planned, why it was necessary and all the details.
When I was finished, Kent expressed his relief and suggested that next time there was anything technical which needed to be related, it would probably be best for them to just talk to me directly.
I could only agree. “Good idea ~ let’s do that,” I said to Kent ~ though Warren was such a control-freak when it came to the telephone ~ I knew it would never actually happen.
“Try to remember this incident,” I told Warren later, “because next time I tell you that you aren’t really getting what I’m saying to you ~ I don’t want you to keep insisting that you do know and that you understand perfectly what I’m talking about.” ‹(ô¿ô)›