Archive for the 'Madelyn' Category

My Chance to Say Thank You

As we pulled into our event on the Fourth of July I was overcome with emotion. There set-up to the direct right of us were The Shriners.

Sure, they are in every small town parade. And they are easy to recognize by their tall, Aladdin-like red velvet hats with extremely long tassels but to me this sighting meant so much. So, incredibly much. Before I even put my foot on the brake I looked at my co-worker as tears filled my eyes and said, “I have to go say thank you.”

Madelyn’s Story

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Part V

So as soon as we were in park. I bolted out of my seat, flew open the door and headed directly to the man in the tall red hat. I put out my hand and told him how grateful my family and I are to the Shriner’s. I explained  Madelyn’s story and showed him the pictures on my cell phone of my baby cousin while I expressed to him how much the Shriner’s have helped my family and most importantly will continue to help Maddy.

I was shaking as I talked to him. Today my family would be all together, I guess this was the very first 4th of July I would not be a part of.  And at the same time it reminded me, once again, that I am no longer a part of Madelyn’s recovery and adjustment. I have not seen her since she arrived home from the hospital. I have not seen her hands unwrapped, or the pressure garments that adorn her head. I have no real idea of  what Maddy, Olivia, Cassie and my Aunt and Uncle’s daily lives are like now.

But even at this distance from my family I felt connected by being given the opportunity  to thank these men for whatever secret operations they conduct (we have no idea how they raise all that money and create those fabulous hosptials)  that have helped our Maddy so very, very much.

So while my family was enjoying a BBQ by my Aunt Darla’s pool, I was jetting around in the Shriner’s Car as they posed  and said “Cheesy Weenies!”

That’s all the reason I needed to be in Oak Brook, IL. Just to thank those Shriners. It really, truly meant so much to me.

And here are some new pics of my girl!!! Check her out now that she is out of the hospital and back at home 🙂

Maddy on her new bike that she got for her 2nd birthday almost 2 months late, but her party waited for her to come home!

The girlies looking cool in their shades 🙂

All photos courtesy of my family—I LOVE GETTING THESE PICS! They make my day, thanks guys!


She’s Back!

Our girl is back…

and pissed!

So, she isn’t loving being wrapped up at all…

But we couldn’t be happier.

Maddy’s surgery was a success so now she is breathing on her own, coughing on her own ( a great sign say the Doctors) and crying for her Mommy and Daddy.

Of course this adds more stress to my Aunt and Uncle, as well as extreme happiness that Maddy’s recovery is moving forward.

Aunt Jenny told me this afternoon that she is still receiving medicine to help with the pain but for a little girl it is scary to be in the hospital and although none of us can understand exactly how she is feeling, we imagine she is not comfortable.

But there is no doubt in my mind she is loving seeing her Mommy and Daddy and Naked Baby right next to her.

So here we go.

Recovery will take time. We have been told since the beginning that this is going to be a long road.

But for now all I can be is happy.

Happy that our girl is back in action.

Love since day one.

Thanks for sending your love and prayers. There is no doubt in my mind they worked. And they will continue to help Maddy as she gets better. Day by day.

❤ Sisters ❤

If you pray…

Pray for Maddy. My 2 year-old-cousin who is at the Shriners Hospital in Boston.

Pray for her parents. Mike and my Aunt Jenny (a frequent commenter on this here, blog).

Pray for her sisters. Livi (3) and Cassie (13).

Pray for the doctors that they help Maddy heal.

Pray for the nurses that need to give her 24 hour care and attention.

Pray for my family as they try to find ways to help my Aunt and Uncle and care for Cassie and Livi.

if you don’t pray…

Give blood.

Donate to the amazing Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Send positive vibes.

My parents came to PA on Saturday to visit/take stuff home before the big day that is Graduation. They arrived at around 11 and by 12 we were done ordering our food as we sat at a table with SallyJo sipping Yuenglings and talking about my cousins. This lead to my mom discussing what she had got my birthday buddy Madelyn for her 2nd birthday (4/28). That’s when Uncle Sean called.

Madelyn had fallen into a fire pit and has been rushed to the hospital. We knew nothing else. Then we heard it was bad. She may have to be flown to Boston that day. My parents got back in the car and I followed. The longest 6 hour drive of my life. It didn’t feel real.

We made it to Bridgeport where she was flown from Norwich.

I got to see my sweet baby cousin. Hear the news and attempt to comfort my incredibly upset Aunt. Nothing was set in stone at this point. We just waited. The Wait. Is horrible.

This was the little baby that was born a day before me. 20 years apart. The baby I watched all summer. That I cuddled with on the couch. That fell asleep and drooled on my shoulder. That loves to dance. That loves to be naked. That loves her babydoll.

With her curly hair and adventurous spirit. And the cutest nose ever. And her big blue eyes.


Why was she wrapped up in a hospital bed?

I can’t begin to describe the pain in my heart. Especially the pain I feel leaving.

I have been in CT since Saturday. But I still have finals. I did not think twice about being absent from class this week. My family needed me.

Not only did I need to rub her soft baby tummy in the hospital, or tickle her little piggy toes as she slept. I needed to hug my Aunt and listen to her talk and worry and vent. I needed to pack bags, send books, and pack snacks. I needed to make breakfasts, cuddle, dress, love and sleep with Livi and Cassie. I needed to explain things when Livi asked questions. I needed to hold her hand and wave goodbye as she boarded the big yellow school bus.

I am still needed.

But where?

I want to be there when she wakes up. I want to be there so bad. But my family doesn’t want me to miss the end of school.

So, I am being shuttled back to school. For the last two weeks of my college career. The last two weeks that I was supposed to cram everything I ever wanted to do or remember about Penn State in. But that doesn’t matter.

What I wouldn’t do to trade places with Maddy. The baby. My birthday buddy.