Playground Perspective: Resiliency at Home

The Floricane team has been spending a lot of time talking about resiliency lately. From all appearances, it is going to be one of our 2017 calling cards.

The Sarvay team has been spending a lot of time experiencing resiliency lately. We'd like it to be completely absent from our lives as we move through 2017.

Resiliency is defines as an ability "to recover quickly from misfortune; to return to original form after being bent, compressed, or stretched out of shape; to recover quickly from disruptive change, or misfortune."

I've had plenty of time lately to think about the various ways the four members of our close family demonstrate resiliency, and our unique strengths that collectively go a long way toward helping the whole family cope with change.

Take, as an example, Jack. Now, two-year-olds are designed to be human putty. They run into walls, and bounce. They hit the ground, and get back up. And they get sick, and usually get better.

Last week, Jack got sick. And he stayed sick. Getting better took time, medicine, an amazing pediatrician (Dr. Gayle Smith at Partners In Pediatrics, FYI.) and resiliency. On all of our parts. Our little guy, and his mom, spent the better part of a week in the hospital, confined to a single room with only his 1970s Fisher Price Little People (all 21 of them) to keep him company.

He rolled with it all -- the confinement, the bad food, the needles. He was the model patient. Seriously.

Nikole was the model mom, staying with our kid 24/7 through the most traumatic moments to the most mundane. She was patient, caring and connected with Jack the whole way. Her resiliency often comes in the form of grace and just simply being in the moment she is experiencing.

On the other hand, I need action. Which made me the perfect person to parent the eight-year-old during the experience, and to go get coffee, go get palatable food, go corral the doctors and ask them detailed questions. You give me opportunities for movement and motion, and I can take anything you throw at me.

Thea sort of splits the difference -- a bit of still water running deep combined with a need to visibly express her emotions. Say, with a "Welcome Home" shrine for Jack with flowers, banners, drawings and other icons.

As I experienced each of our responses to the health crisis in our home, I gradually moved from a place of judgment to appreciation. Staying with a crisis over time allows each person's approach to add value, and be more visible -- something that doesn't always happen in the day-to-day rush over more trivial dramas. Watching Jack, Nikole and Thea each add their own strength to our family's ability to move through disruptive change reminded me why we form families, communities, teams. Politics aside, we are all stronger together. All it takes is a challenge and the ability to rely on and appreciate others for who they are.

As for Jack, he's on the road to recovery. Which is exactly what you'd expect from a kid who eats sugar cookies (made by his sister who was unable to visit him in person) for lunch.