Friday, March 4, 2011


We are typically on the receiving end of people giving. We receive that perfect meal that we can just pop in our oven. We have friends who will take our Sarah any time of the day, if we need to be with Jacob. We drink lattes and treats brought to us in the hospital. We are on the receiving end of encouraging words in tough times. It is wonderful, and it is many times just that right gesture you need to get through a rough day.
At times, it can also overwhelm me a bit. When do I make all those meals for somebody else? When do I bring coffee to a dear friend? When do I plan all the play dates in my house to give another parent a break? I try. I really do, but somehow it never truly balances out.
That is why yesterday felt so good. I was asked if I could participate in the Children's Hospital Magnet audit. Magnet is a creditation for nursing excellence that basically proves that you have some of the best nursing care in the country. The task felt easy considering how many nurses we have worked with at the hospital over the years.
We were parents, some employees of the hospital, and partners of the hospital in the room. The stories came easily, one after one after one. I wasn't even sure which one to pick, since we have so many to share. I decided to share the story when the attending doctor absolutely didn't want us to leave due to Jacob looking too sick, me knowing that it was definitely time to go home, and the nurse who knows Jacob for years now, helping us to get home by being the bridge to the doctors. I told them about Jacob's core nurses who will visit him in the ICU from his regular floor. The nurses who don't just ask us about Jacob, but also asks about Sarah, about Joakim, about me. I recently found out that the nurses think I have the coolest husband in the world! He knows everything about our son, but never looses his calm. He is simply cool! It made me smile.
I am sure the Children's Hospital will receive their Magnet status, not because of what I or anyone else said in that room yesterday, but because of what each nurse does in the hospital each day. The true caring that goes in to their jobs. It is not something you can teach, it is who they are.
From the Children's Hospital, it was time to go with Sarah's girl scout troop to the home town heroes they had picked for the year - Broomfield fire department. Sarah's troop delivered some girl scout cookies to them. Everything from Samoas to Thin Mints.
These are the guys who have picked up Jacob so many times from our home, and brought him to Children's. These are the guys who listen to us, and are confident to include us in Jacob's care, even when things are not going right. I always feel that I am part of their team.
Sarah had fun timing the fire fighters get dressed in seconds, checking out their equipment and the haz-mat truck.
I made sure I talked to each of them before we left, and thanked them personally for all they have done for Jacob, but honestly for our whole family. I just loved when one of them said: "how is he doing? You haven't called us in a long time, so I guess that means he is doing all right". It was a nice feeling to be able to give them a nod in response.
Jacob also got through his sleep study for his clinical trial last night. He fell asleep in the car to the hospital, slept through getting out of the car, slept through getting all set up for the sleep study including the EEG (not a small task), slept through the whole night study, slept through the whole car ride home, and slept another 3 hours when he got home! 15 hours of straight sleep!!! That is not Jacob's typical pattern. It was as if Jacob simply didn't want to add a hospital stay to the month of March, and if he simply wasn't awake in the hospital, it wouldn't count as one!
I'll take that any day.
Lots of love,

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