Questions and Answers

Posted: 28th July 2012 by in Journal

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Today Taylor walked again – I’ll post video tomorrow because it’s late.   Then we took off for Virginia Beach and their condo.   I wasn’t going to go – but I figured the change of scenery would be a good thing.   Little did I know that EVERY trip from DC to Virginia Beach – that is supposed to be 3 hours – turns into 6 hours.     Taylor did good on the drive and he will be able to experience his condo from “legs” this time.

This article is about – questions we’ve been asked.  

Q:  When is Taylor going to shave his beard?   Why is he allowed to have it?

A:  Because of where Taylor was being deployed to – his team received a “no shave” chit.  At Christmas we saw the beginnings of what he has now.    The team that Taylor deployed with is coming home in next week.   This will be bitter sweet for everyone.   But Taylor is determined to “win” the “bad-est” beard contest.   Even though he had to leave the team – he wanted to remain in the competition.   So – he may be “sporting” a different look next week – or he many not – but his goal was to make it to this date.  After that – it remains to be seen.  

But two funny stories about the beard – and how I gotta admit – it is a distinguishing factor.  

1.  On their way to A.  the team was on a military base where following protocol required them to shave all the growth most of them had acquired in the last month – because – after all – it is protocol.   Taylor wasn’t having that – so being familiar with the construction world (from his Dad) he buddied up with some of the construction guys and burrowed some of their clothes so that he could go incognito.  He succeeded – and did not have to shave his beard while he was there.  

2.  While at the White House, on the way in, a police officer was standing by his car with another cop –  and pointed to Taylor and said “Hey – isn’t that the guy from the Chive?”.   We nodded and laughed.   Then on the way out from the White House  – another policeman – said “Hey, isn’t that Taylor Morris? – the guy on the Chive.”   Again we nodded – so we learned that day that Policeman follow the Chive.


Q:  Which brings me to the next question we get – how did you get onto The Chive. 

A:  We were told that two people submitted Taylor’s story to the Chive.   One he did not know, she was a friend of a friend from Cedar Falls.   And the other he had met – and was also the friend of a friend from Taylor’s bootcamp.  


Q:  When are Taylor and Danielle getting married?    Why aren’t they married?  etc

A:  Heck if we know.   All we know is they both come from a long line of marriages.      


Q:  Will they be able to have kids?

A:   Yes – but first comes love, then comes marriage, THEN comes babies!      


Q:  How long have they dated?

A:   Over 7 years – Danielle and Taylor BOTH are from Iowa and they have dated since high school.     


Q:  Does Taylor ever have down days?  Does he have any problems with PTSD

A:  Taylor is a quiet guy – he might get frustrated sometimes – but his demeanor hasn’t changed since the injury.  I know when Danielle was gone, and I’d peak my head in the door to his room and ask if he was up – I’d see him laying there, as a quad – wheel chair by his bed – and feel a twinge of OMG – this is what he’ll deal with every day for the rest of his life.   And I get that every day that’s what he wakes up to – the nakedness of the raw truth – his life has been changed forever in that one moment.   But – everyday – he just engages – sits up – scoots on to his chair and begins his day – and doesn’t wallow in that moment.   I don’t know how he does it – he just does.     

Regarding PTSD – PTS is the emotional processing of the horrors that they see over there.   From what I’ve been told – everybody that goes to A. experiences it – Special Forces, all branches, etc – it is the decompressing of the f’ed up world over there.   I have learned that 1% of the US population is military these days.   That 1 service member commits suicide per day over there, and that we’re losing our    most highly trained service people to a faceless enemy  (I will write more about this later).   Regarding PTSD and amputee’s – we’ve been told they ALL will go through it.   They either have a lot of anger upfront – which Taylor has not had – or they heal physically, and then they process though the emotional stuff.   Most process through and I’ve heard the clinic that guides them – is amazing.    

With Taylor his demeanor is no different than it was before he left.   What happens after his rehab remains to be seen. 

Q:  Are Danielle and I really getting along.   How do we get along.   How’s it going with you and Danielle, etc. 

A:  Short answer – Yes Danielle and I are REALLY getting along.  We both love my son – and have each other’s interest in mind.  

Long answer – and the stories – This is such an unusual situation we’re in – as typically T and D would be off on their own, checking in periodically with Dan and I and that’s  how it should be.   However, our son could have died over there – and we just want to be around him until we feel we can let go again – and – his girl – doesn’t want to let go of him for the rest of their lives.   And . . . in spite of all that – we’re in close quarters during this rebuilding process.   All I can say is thank goodness Taylor is an easy going guy!  And Danielle is too! 

Each family has their own dynamic – ours is – Always want the best for those you love – if there’s a problem – put it out there, create space, and get over it!     And in walks Danielle – a girl that I didn’t raise.   But hey – I’m no dummy – I know that girls rule the roost.  And it’s important to get a good communication thing going – so that you don’t have problems. 

An example of what we did when Dan and I came to visit Taylor and Danielle last year – Dan helped Taylor build the deck on his condo.   Taylor and Dan were out working their butts off – and Danielle and I looked at each other and said “Well – what should we do for the week?”   We decided to do some “batch” cooking – so that would have easy meals for their busy schedule – and created a backyard space.   Anyway – the condo being her first place and because I know that I am vocal, and she is more quiet. – we came up with a code word between us – and it was –  if ever I suggested something, or voiced an opinion, or harped about something – that she wasn’t crazy about – she could say – “I’ll think about it”    This was important, because – it’s hard for me to NOT share my opinion – because I know that opinions are like ###holes and everyone has one.   And because I’m interested in learningn from others and not threatened by their input. 

Result – If she said “I’ll think about it:”   I would “get” that she wasn’t crazy about the idea and I shouldn’t go on and on about it – as my kids say I do.   Actually – when that happens – they usually say “Ma – give it a rest!”.   Anyway – this was a good solution – so that she didn’t have to say “give it a rest”.   I know my place (most of the time)  – and this code word worked flawlessly – and I still remember the first time she said “I’ll think about it.” To me and I’m sure she would too.   It empowered her and it let me know I was overstepping bounds. 

When we came to Walter Reed – we did not create a new code word.   Maybe we should have – but we didn’t have time, we didn’t think about it – for whatever reason – we didn’t.    I’m not even sure that would have made a difference in the ONE situation when we clashed.  I take full responsibility for it.   It was a misunderstanding on my part and my feelings got hurt.  And as it is with feelings – if your feelings get hurt – you react in a multitude of ways – anger, claming up, etc.     Anyway – we chalked this instance up to emotions being high – and the misunderstanding – and we’re over it.    We gotta lot of years ahead of us and it doesn’t do anyone any good to hold on to stuff like that.

Those are the biggies that I can think off.   Danielle is LOVING being back in the space she created – and Taylor is loving seeing his friends again.  I love to see that boy laugh!



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