For the second year in a row I will be running the Boston Marathon with the Children’s Hospital Miles for Miracles team. This year I have the honor of having two patient partners, my daughter Brigid and our very close friends’ son Eamonn.
Brigid’s connection with Boston Children’s Hospital began at birth and she continues to be followed and cared for by many services and specialists at the hospital. It is through the efforts of these amazing clinicians that Brigid has received both life saving and life altering care. On January 9th Brigid celebrated her “2nd transplantaversary”. She would not be here and she would not be thriving if it weren’t for the access we have to such amazing specialists. I have heard more than one of Brigid’s doctors use the word “miracle” to describe her in the past year. I do believe in miracles. But I also believe and fully know that without the care of those same doctors and specialists we would not have this miracle to celebrate. She simply wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for them. Her smile, laughter and 2 year old sassiness remind me every day what this hospital has given back to us. Brigid has had over 200 appointments at BCH since she came home from the NICU. And when we walk out of the hospital hand in hand no matter where we have been or what tests or exams or procedures have needed to happen I hear a little voice next to me saying, “Thank you hospital for helping me.” It started as us saying those words together…but now she says them on her own. It’s simply not possible to say thank you 200 times over. But by participating on this team, it’s our small attempt at trying.
And now to talk about another miracle. This year I have the honor of having a second patient partner. He is truly a little boy who has defied all of the odds. And there is not a person who hasn’t commented on the (just under) 25 weeker who’s smile and eyes light up the room. When Eamonn was born 3.5 months early at 1 lb. 13 oz. his parents were told a long list of complications a baby born this prematurely might face. Slowly, Eamonn faced nearly every one of those complications. Within Eamonn's first month, he faced life threatening situations and was rushed to the operating room for an emergency surgery when he weighed just 2 lbs. The amazing doctors at BCH were able to successfully operate on his tiny body. Eamonn spent 5 months in the NICU under the expert care of many specialists at Boston Children’s Hospital. Eamonn is now home with respirator/oxygen support and “G-tube” feedings. He continues to be a rock star through everything and is always flashing his huge smile. His smile and bright eyes don’t tell the tale of what he has endured to get here, but they certainly give a glimpse of his love of life and determination to thrive and overcome any hurdle he might face along the way. His family will be forever-grateful to BCH for everything they have done.
Two children and their families who are beyond grateful. Please help me in our mission to support Boston Children’s Hospital. In honor of Brigid. In honor of Eamonn. In honor of all the children they help every single day. “Until every child is well……”