To all you moms out there who are separated from your children and family due to illness, military service or work, I want to say that I grieve with you tonight. I have never been so home sick in all my life. I have cried all day and I am literally sick to my stomach. My heart feels like it is broken in two. Being an hour away was hard enough, but I knew that at any given time I could see my kids if I wanted to. Being here, its not even an option. What's worse is that as we spend more time here we realize that this is not a floor that is conducive to Jack visiting and Lucy's schedule will hardly allow it either. I miss LeBonheur and St. Jude. I miss our familiar nurses and doctors. I miss the faces that I knew in the hallway and I miss the family that was have come to know over the past 16 months. CHOA is great, don't get me wrong, its just new.
And don't get me started on Atlanta. It is so big and I can't even make my way out of the parking garage. I almost threw the Garmin out of the window the other night when it was pouring rain and I was trying to navigate to Target. I was a mess. I haven't felt that incompetent in a long time. I'm going to stop having a pity party and move on. When I look around this hospital I am constantly reminded of how blessed we are. Lucy is on special child and she has the opportunity to have a great life. There are so many children here who won't ever have that chance.
We tried to go to chapel today. I had to leave after about 20 minutes. My emotions are still too raw. It was more than I could handle. Lucy and Erik stayed, though, as she was doing OT during the service. These therapists are quite tricky that way. As soon as the service was over, Erik's sister and some of her family came to visit for the day. Boy, were they a site for sore eyes. My heart just melted when I saw them. It was such an immediate comfort being with family. They even brought me us dinner, which was my first home cooked meal in over 20 days. It was wonderful!
After we spent some time visiting, Erik and I headed out on a little excursion. Today is our 12th wedding anniversary and it was such a treat to be able to spend a few minutes together alone. We had planned on dining at a nice restaurant but the appeal of a home cooked meal was just too great. So, we settled on Fro Yo instead. We window shopped at REI and dreamed of one day taking all three kids camping, hiking and rafting.
When we returned, Lucy was so tired. While we played cards with in the family room, she fell asleep in my lap and slept for about 2 hours. She had three 45 minute therapy sessions today and was utterly exhausted. I have no idea how she is going to make it for 6 hours tomorrow. There are times I look at her and compare her to other children on this floor. She seems so healthy. But then, after almost collapsing after 25 minutes of PT, I am reminded that she does need to be here. Her body is so worn out. She (we) have a long way to go.
Tomorrow is a long day, just as the rest of the week will be. I am excited, though, because I am going to have a visit from two friends and I am thrilled. My friend Carrie moved to Atlanta from Memphis several years ago. She is such a great person and I just love her family to death. Her whole family (Camille) treated us so well when we lived in Memphis. We are going to have lunch or dinner one day and then her husband is going to come take Erik out the next day. The other friend was a total surprise. I totally forgot that a sorority sister (Pi Beta Phi) of mine lives in Atlanta. Amber actually works here at CHOA as a therapist and I am beyond giddy about seeing her.
One day down, now clue how many more to go. We will never stop praying for many, many more years. Oh, and Happy Anniversary Erik. I love you more today than I ever have before.