In 2002, at age 17, I was diagnosed with osteosarcoma. My family found ourselves in a new world of medical treatments far away from home. My parents were incredibly grateful for a CFC-supported facility, as it provided them a home away from home while they cared for me during my treatments. They still speak often of the friends they met there and the impact that the facility had on their lives.
I never truly understood how impactful and life-changing the CFC-supported organization was for my parents until I too became a parent of a critically ill child. At 25 weeks pregnant, my water broke, and I was rushed from our home via ambulance. Six days later, I delivered our daughter, Eleanor Vivian, at 26 weeks. She weighed 1 pound 15 ounces, measuring 12.5 inches long. Over the next 108 days, my husband and I lived crib side as we cared for our daughter and watched her grow. The same CFC-supported facility that assisted my parents became our home, and the staff there became our friends. Each morning as I walked through the facility on my way back to the hospital, someone would ask about Eleanor with genuine care and gentle compassion. It was so helpful in our journey to be surrounded by others who cared about us and understood that our whole world was across the street being cared for by the amazing professionals at the hospital.
When the day finally came, and we were preparing to leave the facility to take our daughter home, it hit me: this is the facility that love built. This is the facility that supports you in your weakest, scariest, most vulnerable times. This is the facility that also cheers you on, and offers you so many small pieces of normalcy in a time that is anything but normal. As we left the facility, with tears of joy in our eyes, we knew we were no longer leaving “the house” we were leaving “our house” and we are forever grateful for everything.
Cause: Healthcare/Human Services