Sunday, September 7, 2014

perception and memories

We are in the throes of potty training.  It is a delicate balance teetering toward a power struggle with my very feisty and stubborn girl.  The tactic changes almost daily.  There are stickers, praise, bribery, and yes sometimes ultimatums.  One day last week as I was trying to get Virginia to focus on going number two, I agreed to play music for her on my iphone while she sat on the potty.  Pharell's 'Happy' didnt get it done, neither did Katy Perry's 'California Girl.'  The next song up was Phillip Phillip's 'home' which is our anthem of sorts, mostly because we have made several slideshows to that song.  She immediately recognized the song and had a big smile on her face.  Then she kept repeating a long phrase which initially I couldn't make out.  After her expression became more serious I finally realized that she recognized the song as the one that is set to her slideshow.  What she remembered though was "baby getting boo boo fixed at doctor."  Mind you these are never words we have used while watching that video with her.  The few times we have watched it we have always told her that the tiny baby in the pictures was her, that she was very small and sick, and that we loved her.

Clearly those images and that song stuck with her, but not in the same way that it has stuck with Heath and I.  She clearly knows that the baby in the photos in the first half of that video was sick but she has no idea that it was her.  She also clearly does not remember the 2nd half of the video where she is able to recognize more recent photos of herself.

It is a huge relief to me that at nearly 3 years old her memory is only that of sympathy and concern for the baby in the video.  That she does not consciously or subconsciously remember anything from that time.  We will always be open with her and we hope that she only ever looks at those photos and feels powerful for how far she has come and thankful for the medical care and prayers that saved her.   I know those photos will always foster mixed emotions for Heath and I, but also believe that the same photos will empower her to be the mightiest and best person that she can be.

The same goes for this blog.  I have always been cognizant that one day Virginia may read her story here.  It has been a fine line to straddle and the older she gets the more aware I am of how she may feel about her story being 'out there.'  I can only hope that she views these words in the same way that she views those earliest photos.  I can only hope that she is proud of how resilient and blessed she is.  I can only hope that she continues to do amazing things and changes peoples lives for the better.

And....She never pooped on the potty that afternoon.

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