I’m celebrating my second New Year’s Eve in the hospital. Dec. 31, 2012, passed with barely a cheer. Tonight, we are anticipating the real beginning of our New Year – going home.
While New Year’s is about looking forward, it is also a time for reflecting on what has gone before. Here, on our second New Year’s Eve, are some of the things I learned during our 80-day journey from surgery to rehabilitation.
- While each family’s story is unique, it is comforting to be in a community which shares common experiences.
- The relationship you had with your child coming in – good or bad – isn’t going to change just because everything else has.
- Not all health care professionals are pinnacles of warmth
- A concerned “How are you?” from a nurse can make your day.
- Not all parents are self-sacrificing and supportive caregivers.
- If you didn’t speak the language, this would be a terrifying experience.
- Even if you doubt the “softer” professions having a social worker who will listen without taking sides is a necessary sanity saver.
- While hospital food has become more varied, it’s still not good.
- Personality is as important as professional qualifications.
- Just because people are well meaning does not mean they are right.
- “You know your child best,” does not mean you get to make the decisions.
- Parents don’t always make the right decisions.
- Being reasonable and respectful – as hard as it may be – gets you further than anger and insults.
- There is a comradery of common existence that brings you together with people you might never otherwise encounter.
- Sharing details of your child’s experience for once makes you one of the crowd, not an outsider.
- This would be impossible without a support network to help keep you going.
Happy New Year everyone! Here’s to healthy 2013- take 2.