Friday, December 5, 2014

13 Days of Rainbows Opportunity

to be a NICU nurse at a children's hospital takes a very special person. you must be incredibly intelligent. quick on your feet. clear-headed. gentle. patient. kind. optimistic. tough, yet tender.

basically, an angel.

noah spent almost all of his days on earth in the Seattle Children's Hospital NICU. this was his home:

and while he was there, he was cared for by the most capable team of genuinely kind and gracious people.

our nurse, pasha, was one of those people.

this is pasha on noah's last day, getting him dressed up in his bow tie onesie

pasha cared for noah many of the days he was there. she may have known him better than we did. day after day, we literally had to leave our fragile, precious, heart-of-our-heart baby boy in the hands of others, trusting they were caring for him the best ways they knew how. it was the most terrified i have ever been in my entire life times a billion. but the good people at Seattle Children's somehow made it just a little more bearable.

pasha "just happened" to be on shift the day we found out noah had ACD. i remember dr. jackson ushering john and i into a little room that june 18th morning with another doctor (alicia) and nurse pasha where he gently, and straight-forwardly, told us the news:

noah will not survive. it's time to say good-bye.

throughout the rest of that holy day, pasha was completely present with us, answering questions, and comforting our bewildered and tender hearts. (i'm pretty sure NICU nurses spend just as much time, if not more, taking care of the parents, as the babies!)

also on that day, and i don't have a clue how she did it, she made us this beautiful scrapbook to take home. she took pictures. she made hand and foot prints. she gracefully documented a lifetime of our boy in ten, small pages.

this is one of the very few tangible items we have to remember noah. she gave us one of the most precious gifts we could of ever received - not just the kindness she showed us each minute we were with her, but the gift of our boy, to treasure always. i will forever be grateful to her.

i'm telling you all this because tomorrow begins 13 Days of Rainbows, and this year i want to return kindness to pasha, and all the other NICU nurses at Seattle Children's Hospital. there's no way in the world i'll be able to express to her, and all the other angels there, how much we love them and appreciate the ways they make our world better, but i can try.

obviously for 13 Days of Rainbows anyone is welcome to join in the kindness-spreading in any way that feels right for them, but if you're looking for an opportunity, i've got one.

i've decided that part of my 13 Days of Rainbows will be collecting and delivering scrapbook and other spoiling-type items to the NICU nurses at Seattle Children's. 

i have yet to walk back through those NICU doors, to the place our most sacred dreams died, but i think i'm ready.

SO! if you have any of the following that you'd like to donate for the nurses, that would awesome!

*scrapbook paper
*scrapbook stickers
*craft, design scissors
*photo paper
*letter beads
*gift cards (michael's, target, starbucks)
*sweet treats (gum, chocolates)

there's a 13 Days of Rainbows box at the Bellevue Presbyterian Church main office to leave stuff, or you can give/send to me. (message me for my address, if you need it.) i'll be making the delivery on DEC 18.

these small items may not seem like a lot.  but as the recipients of what can be created out of them, i know they represent the world. 

if our house was burning down, that scrapbook is one of the few most prized, material possessions we have.

i hope with our gift, others may know that love too.

thank you!!! and have a very, merry 13 days!

Monday, December 1, 2014

13 Days of Rainbows

a year ago, for 13 days over the month of december, we honored noah's life by participating in 13 Days of Rainbows. december 5 - december 18.

here's the blog post from last year explaining how it got started.

it was such a sweet time and filled our hearts with so much love and joy. and i can't wait to start another year. on friday it begins!

these upcoming 13 days will commemorate the life of our would-have-been 18 month old. at a time of the year when there's so much hustle and bustle of the holidays, i feel the void of my beloved boy all the more. this is the second christmas we'll have without him, and it's just as hard as it was last year, maybe harder. i kind of feel like last year we got a "pass" but this year we have to start making the hard decisions like, should we hang his stocking? what will we (or i mean, Santa) put in it? and on and on it goes ...

there's a lot of sadness and grief. still.

but there's also joy. especially when i think of 13 Days of Rainbows. hundreds of people who will be shown kindness and goodness because a little baby boy lived. he brings hope... kind of like another little Baby Boy we remember this season.

so we'd love for you to join us! do one kind deed anytime during those 13 days, or something everyday. totally up to you! follow your heart.

if you need a little inspiration, here are just some of the stories from last year. but also feel free to be as creative as you like!

click here to print or download a cute little card to pass out with your kindness, if you wish. (made by my talented sister in law! she's the best.)

then let's flood Instagram and Facebook with pictures and stories of good being done across the world by using #13DaysOfRainbows to encourage and inspire us all.

later this week i'll share a special opportunity for us to love on children and their parents at Seattle Children's Hospital. so stay tuned for that!

oh, my gosh. i really can't wait.

thank you. thank you. thank you.
...for loving our boy and honoring his life with us.

looking forward to seeing all your kindness-spreading!
and please share this opportunity with others!

merry christmas. with much love.