As we get closer and closer to Mattie’s Homecoming, I find that periodically I get a huge lump in my throat. This is super duper emotional folks. For 11 months, my son has lived inside the four walls (or curtains) of a hospital. My son has never been outside except to be whisked onto a helicopter or an airplane. This is all he has know. There is so much more, and it is all just around the corner.
The lump in my throat is caused by two realities.
First is the reality that Mattie is about to spend his first night under the same roof as the family who loves him. He is about to have the sun shine on his face. He is about to feel grass touch his toes. He is about to roll around on the floor of his very own bedroom. He is about to snuggle on the couch and take a nap with his Daddy. He is about to be greeted by the faces of brothers and sisters each morning. He is about to hear laughter and music and noises of love (and craziness) all around him. He is about to experience his first play dates with little friends. He will get to go to church, take a trip to the zoo, and go to the park. I don’t know about you, but that puts a lump in my throat that nearly takes my breath away.
Second is the reality that we will be saying goodbye to an incredible group of people who have cared for Mattie with compassion, kindness, and professionalism for the past 9 months at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City. These people are like family to us. I mean that. They are our family. Doctors, Surgeons, Nurse Practitioners, Nurses, Therapists, and Secretaries. We have developed special relationships with them. Many of them have been directly involved in saving Mattie’s life. They have stood beside us through grieve and pain and have rejoiced with us over every little milestone. They have taken the time not only to care for our sweet son, but to watch out for John and I too. They have welcomed our children on their many visits to see their little brother. They have done everything they could do to allow us to be a family, even in the midst of what has been the most challenging journey of our lives.
We are so grateful.
I just betcha you’ve got a lump in your throat now too.