Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: RAIN (04/18/19)
TITLE: Battle Royal
By Graham Insley
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Soft, gentle rain fell on a canvas roof, as if I was sleeping in a tent. Would Tony ever experience camping? Would he even wake up from his drug induced sleep? Had he opened his last birthday present? Concentrate on the rain.
Pitter pat. One drop after another. Count the drops… a silly idea, there are far too many of them. Just constant drops falling in a never ending drum beat. Soft, but clear, fast falling rain meant to induce sleep, but joining my tears as they fall onto my pyjamas. Tony, in darkness and alone. Maybe I should get up and go back to the hospital, but they had said they would keep him knocked out for at least two days to give the swelling time to go down. Darn it, listen to the rain.
Change the setting. Rain falling on a tin roof. A steady rain. Focus on that and pray. Once again, I sent my petition upwards. I believed in God. Tony’s health didn’t change that. Live or die, that was a constant that would not change. God was above the worries of this life. He did not cause them but could change them. “Please Lord, heal my grandson. Let me see him playing in puddles, making mud pies and splashing with his mates.” Listen to the rain and trust.
The sound was soothing, no doubts about that. Artificial, but calming. What I needed was comfort and peace. The only thing that would bring that was a waking, healed grandson. But he wouldn’t want to wake up to an emotionally wrecked granddad. Listen to the rain.
Boy, this was turning into a battle royal. Sleep, worry, rain. Who was going to win? I must have eventually drifted off because the next thing I knew it was daylight. The constant sound of falling rain had done its job… I’d drifted into a fitful sleep but sleep none the less. I showered and went straight to the hospital.
For four days the process was the same. Visit the hospital, go home, turn on the rain sound, fight for sleep and eventually drift into restless slumber. I was glad for that machine. Without the rhythm of rain, I think I would have gone insane for the want of sleep. But then the anticipated moment was upon us… the doctors were going to wake Tony today.
As I drove to the hospital, worry remained my constant companion. Would there be brain damage? Of course there would… but how much? Would Tony be Tony, or a look alike, unable to relate or talk? Barely able to concentrate, I journeyed towards my fears. Funny, it was raining for real today. A small summer shower with an accompanied brightness that tried to pierce my gloom. Rain to again match my tears with windscreen wipers cleaning the screen and tissues doing the same to my face. Water everywhere, but would Tony ever see it?
That was six months ago. Today the rain is with us again. A family picnic under the cover of a public shelter. A large roof protects us from getting drenched, but it doesn’t protect Tony and his brothers. No, they are out getting soaked as they play on their scooters, laughing, joking and skidding around like young rascals. And for once, I don’t care. Let them get wet. My grandson is alive and the rain washes all other worries away.
My prayers have been answered with a resounding “Yes”. God has let His healing grace fall like droplets of life-giving dew. Tony is not only alive but has made great leaps in health. The brain damage is minimal, the physical limitations are few, hearing and vision are fine and the rain falls on rejoicing spirits. Let it rain.
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