Our Hospital Christmas

When the scheduler said December 19th I begged, pleaded, and even cried. Maddie Kate was about to have extensive surgery to fix her scoliosis, our scariest yet, with a projected hospital stay of seven days and home time on strong pain meds for at least two weeks. My mind quickly did the math that Christmas would be spent in the confines of a hospital bed rather than by the light of our tree. But in true Maddie Kate style, we couldn’t let that ruin our holidays.

We’ve always had a strict rule in our household of no decorating before December, but this year is an exception. We will milk every second of this precious holiday season we have, between the moment we put the turkey leftovers away in the fridge (because I couldn’t bring myself to start before then), to the day we go in for surgery.

Being the parent of a child with special needs makes you tough. We are faced with difficult situations, like illnesses and surgeries, and we get knocked down hard for a moment. Then the moment passes and we dust ourselves off and keep on trucking because that’s what we do. We have beautiful, amazing, children to keep moving for. Christmas time is upon us, and even if we are aware it’s being celebrated two weeks early, it is no less magical in the eyes of our babies. It’s our job as parents to help hold together their innocence as much as we possibly can. For us, that means putting on a happy face and realizing a date on the calendar is just that, and no reason to get hung up. There are far more important things in life and we sure know it. Her health for one, the smile on her face as she is admiring the lights on the Christmas tree, and her strength she has amassed at such a young age from going through more trials than most face in their adult lives.

So this year, Santa has agreed to visit our house early, equipped with lots of nice goodies that can be enjoyed from a hospital bed to pass the time: books and sticker sets to name a few. He even got his elves to whip up a puff sticker Christmas tree set that we can use to make our hospital room a little more festive.

December 25th is just a date, just like the 19th is. That day will come and pass, and our baby will get through this surgery tough as always. We will happily celebrate her health and our little hospital Christmas.

Amanda

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