You may remember a post I did a while ago about Josh being down at Children's and we did Hospital Bingo. At the time Josh had been in the hospital for a while, and although an 8 month old baby can't play Bingo, he could look at the clown on tv dressed up in bright, fun clothes talking to him along with the kids that were able to make it to the 5th floor to participate in person. Josh won Bingo the first day, I was so excited calling down to the 5th floor on his phone to shout Bingo over the tv! He won a Build-A-Bear! The following week when we did not win, he got a goldfish beany baby as a consolation prize (can't win 'em all!). Anyways, we were down at Children's for quite some time before being discharged, and then returning just a day later to what would end up being his final days with us. Being constantly at your child's bedside, comforting, and doing all you can to keep life "normal" for the rest of your family can oftentimes be very hard if not near impossible.
Another post you may remember was from this past October (I think not posted until early November) where I spoke about going down to McCormick Place to pick up my packet for the marathon. They have a huge expo with lots of different vendors and people trying to raise money for different charities, etc. You may remember I smirked and sighed at the guy who was asking for a t-shirt from the Children's Memorial Hospital team because his son stayed there for a few nights, when all I wanted to say was my son died there one night! After passing that booth I came to a booth that wiped the tear before it could even start to fall...Open Heart Magic. They are a group that go to different hospitals and perform magic for kids and parents. Sounds kinda silly? Well, when you are in the hospital day after day you don't need another nurse, doctor, friend, or family member telling you to "hope for the best" or giving their words of wisdom which come from no experience like yours at that moment. What you need is to get away...you need to go to a magical place, not just your kid but the parent as well. You need to be able to forget everything that is going on, remember what its like to smile, to learn, to engage, to feel a part of something outside of the medical staff's rounds, you need Open Heart Magic!
Within seconds of seeing a trick I was sold...this is what I had to bring to the Family Advisory Council at Central DuPage. It was such an easy thing to do, and Mike the Director/Founder of Open Heart Magic was so wonderful to work with. It was with a joyful tear this morning that I found a very overly complimentary e-mail in my inbox stating that this past Tuesday CDH has started Open Heart Magic! I know that Josh continues to grow in me and makes me grow as well. He is the driving force behind many of my actions and I am so very proud that CDH now has Open Heart Magic. If you live in our area and, heaven forbid, you wind up at CDH and happen to run into one of the fantastic magicians know that Josh is visiting you as well. They will be visiting the Peds Units: PICU, Peds, possible NICU) Pediatric ER, and Pediatric Outpatient Services. They may even at some point flow into the adult units as well, as the hospital staff saw that this magic is not just for kids its for everyone!