*Disclaimer…Lately finding the time to write and then actually get what I write onto the blog at the same time has been proven impossible. For weeks now I’ve written off and on but the moments to post have been fleeting so I’m left with half finished thoughts, paragraphs and updates no one will ever read. Whoops. Anyway…this one was too important to stay in just my possession so while I know it is now Thursday (or at least I think it is) this was written Sunday. Forgive me? xoxo
Riley is next door…on the floor with Papi playing their millionth round of Barbie wedding. I’m next door as well shoveling leftover pasta into my mouth with crossed fingers that each bite will soothe the hangover rattling in my brain. My brother doesn’t come into town often and turns out we had a bit to catch up on and that clearly involved more beers than my next day body felt necessary. I stroll back to my house to get Rileys afternoon meds ready and as I open the back slider I hear the door bell. It’s Sunday. Who solicits on a Sunday? Rude. Don’t these people know I’m in no mood to say no to solar?! (not because I don’t support it I just can’t afford it). I open the door to an empty porch…no salesman…just a gift bag, I look up and see a car pulling away but not one I recognize. I lift the gift bag and peer into it…there’s an envelope protruding that reads To: Riley and Family. I set it on the counter, pull up the meds and then carry back next door with me two different pain meds, chemo and a gift. Happy Sunday. Riley is expecting the meds but the bag excites her. We open it up and as I read through the cards I’m humbled…there is never a name other than ours. I don’t now who its from…before I even get to the gift I don’t know who to thank and am immediately consumed with curiosity and my all time favorite emotion…gratitude.
Inside is a blanket…a quilt. It’s blazing pink and stupidly soft on one side but the other side…the other side is a mix of patterned fabric and pictures. There is an image of Chris and I donning Zebra capes in New Orleans during a SCID convention, one of the hospital staff happily holding a sign announcing Rileys initial release from the hospital, a couple of the sketches that my cousin had done that saved me during this latest stay. And the middle…the middle has “Go Riley Go”…smack dab in the center which has been my mantra from the beginning. When I’ve had no other words “Go Riley Go” has conveyed what we all want. We just want her to go, to keep going and going and going. Denise and I grab the edges as we notice that there are names…we both have the same initial thought…this must be who it’s from. But then we look closer and there are names going around the entire perimeter…names of people I know, people I don’t, people who are my dearest friends and family members and people who are strangers but vigorous Riley supporters. The words on the card now make more sense… it reads:
To Riley & Family,
We made this blanket to represent each person & family that supports you through your journey. Hopefully, for everyday we cannot be there in person to show our love & give big hugs you are able to wrap yourself in this blanket to give you strength & support. Or at the very least make those uncomfortable days just a tad more comfy. Go Riley Go! 🙂
I’m speechless. Humbled. Moved to tears. The cure to my hangover was not pasta…it was this. It was the reminder that our little family is still in the hearts and on the minds of so many. A reminder that our journey is nowhere near over and someone took an obscene amount of time to let us know they knew that. A reminder that when I’m not at my best I can be made better by my support system. A reminder that no matter what life throws at Riley she will always be loved by so many. That WE will always be loved by so many.
Thank you doesn’t do it justice and especially because I don’t know who to thank. For now I’ll thank you all…each and every name that flanks the edges of our new go to hospital blanket:
Mickey & John
Danny & Didi Stout
Dan & Jessica Proctor
Cathy Mitchell & Family
Elsie Brooks & Family
Walsh Family (SCID Group)
Shannon Reed & Family
Your Hughson Family
UCSF Nursing Staff
SCID Angels For Life Foundation
Ane & Family
Entire SCID Group
Thank You, Thank You, Thank you.
We had an appointment up at UCSF on Tuesday and let’s just say on the drive home she felt all the love & support. 😉 xoxo