What a weekend it was.
Friday morning we picked up the moving truck and started loading it full of books and toys and electronics and itunes cards and activity kits and so much more!!! It was amazing and overwhelming! You guys were amazing. We ended up with around 2500 books, 10 boxes of toys, 2 boxes full of electronics, 2 large itunes gift cards, 2 boxes full of activity kits, and so many large toys and play structures that I can't even list them all. A big group of us headed to KU Medical Center right after lunch. We were met there by Eli's doc, scheduler, and many of the other people in our hospital team, as well as the hospital photographer and our local TV station news team. (we didn't know they were coming). We first unloaded all of the toys and some of the books onto carts and dollies and such and spent almost 20 minutes waiting for all of us to get it all thru the elevators and up to the Peds floor. I broke down in the hallway right outside the Peds/PICU entrance. It was really hard.
We had so many things that they had to use one of the large patient rooms to load it all into. We all had a chance to talk, and cry and laugh, and share stories of Eli. It was hard and wonderful all at the same time.
The news team did their interviews and got all of the their shots. It was overwhelming.
Eli's doc was able to spend a few moments alone with Bob and I. We all went over the PICU together and spent a few moments standing outside of room 24. I had wanted to go in, but there was a patient in the room. It was strange. The room seemed so normal, so typical. Just a hospital room. I stared at the door, expecting to feel something, but numbness took over. The Peds floor was tough, seeing the halls that my son ran down and played in, the playroom that he explored, the staff we spent so much time with. The PICU was cold and numb. The last moments I spent with my baby were all wrapped up in that room, his final breath, his last bath, the last time I ever held my child, yet I felt nothing looking at that closed door. It was strange.
We re-joined everyone and had to drive over the book sorting facility to drop off all 2500 books. They were amazing there as well. They took us into their book library and let the kids look around and explore. They took photos with us and our books, and listened to stories of our little man.
As hard as the experience was, it was doubly amazing. To know that my little man's smile and playful nature will continue to bless the halls and rooms of the hospital, and the homes and families of so many patients. His legacy will continue to live on even though he's not here anymore. This melts my heart.
I try so hard to make it feel enough. To make my heart and soul and mind all sync up together in the knowledge that so many love our little man and that his legacy lives on, but I can't lie. It's not enough for me. As my arms are still empty. It helps some, but it's never going to be enough.
That afternoon we all came home and loaded up the moving truck yet again for our first load to Wichita. Bob and I left Saturday morning and came back Sunday morning. We got a lot hauled and organized. It was exhausting but well worth the trip.
This week is busy finishing up things here. The kids have another concert next week and parent/ teacher conferences.
Last night was our final night at our family group grief counseling. This cycle has ended and won't start up until the new year, long after we are gone. We are very thankful that we participated and hope to find a similar place in Wichita.
We leave 1 week from tomorrow. It's still a very bittersweet feeling for me, but I'm ready.
I will get more updates soon.