At the beginning of April we were contacted by one of the child life specialists at Cook Children's. They wanted us to represent Cook's at a Benefit Gala being held in conjunction with the ACM Awards. The gala was benefitting the Child Life Zone at Cooks. They needed to choose a patient who had been positively affected by the Child Life Zone. Alex has spent countless hours there over the last few years and especially the last few months as he created a Lego Stop Animation Movie with the production staff. I am not sure I can even put into words what that night was like. It was amazing to see my boy confidently meet celebrities and donors and speak eloquently about the hospital and what child life means to the patients and families. Everyone was so kind and genuine. It was so nice to see my boy with such a huge smile on his face. We are so grateful for the opportunity to attend this gala and help raise funds for something that means so much to us.
Garth Brooks and Tricia Yearwood
The magic continued...As we were leaving we were asked to come to the hospital the next afternoon to once again speak with Garth Brooks. While the child life zone was swarming with people anxious to get autographs, we were taken out to meet Garth as he came in. We spent a few minutes talking to him. He presented Alex with an autographed cowboy hat that a generous donor had bid on and wanted Alex to have. Such an amazing memento of our weekend. Monday as we were trying to recoup, I received a message on Facebook that Alex and I were on Entertainment Tonight! What a crazy, magical experience. As I profusely thanked the child life staff for this experience, I let them know what a great teaching tool it is for me to be able to point out that as hard as his life is, as much as mito has taken from him, we also gain...incredible experiences, amazing friends, and unforgettable memories.
Our crazy life continues in full swing, but I see a light at the end of the tunnel and hopefully some slower days! Alex is busy finishing up school. We have 2 weeks left in fifth grade! Homeschool co-op finished this past week. We are busy with Wish Night (The Huge Make A Wish Fundraiser that we participate in every year) rehearsals where Alex was given a featured role in the opening number. Alex is also still busy with TKD, boy scouts and has done some other volunteering with Make A Wish. he continues to do well medically. We are so thankful for the incredible team of doctors and nurses who have brought him to this place and found the right mix of interventions to have him the most stable he has ever been.
Miss Maddy Moo also has some exciting news. After months of therapy three times a week, she is starting to walk with the help of orthotics and a walker. She loves her new independence and is so proud of herself. It has been and continues to be such a struggle. Her PT always says that she only walks by sheer determination. She works so hard, but she has come so far from a few months ago when she wouldn't even bear weight on her legs. We are so proud of her.
We continue to work with hematology, GI and neurology to try and sort out this little sweet pea. We saw GI in April and they started her on a special medication to try and increase her absorption and gain some weight. She seemed to be making some strides, but she has been sick this past week and was unable to eat as she had blisters in her throat. Hopefully, now that she is feeling better she will start to gain again.
We did manage to sneak in time with Heather at H. Parker Photography to get some bluebonnet pictures. Our session was right around Maddy's bedtime and she was a bear. I was really worried we wouldn't get any good pictures, but somehow heather worked her magic and got some beautiful photos!
Thank you for sharing this crazy journey with us!