Yep, it’s definitely worth jumping for joy – seven heart heartiversary today!!!!!!!! Addison is so excited, mostly I think because we’re having macaroni and cheese, sushi, and strawberry cake for our little heart party with family tonight. She feels lucky she gets to have two ‘birthdays’ because that means double the treats. Today she’s sharing these amazing heart cookies with her classmates at school.
(Full confession. I am not the Pinterest mom of the year, though I did find the cookie cutter on Etsy. My colleague’s lovely daughter Sarah made them for us.)
But today isn’t really about the cookies and the cake. It’s about little miracles, second chances, and incredible generosity and love from complete strangers. This is what organ donation can do:
When I look at that picture of Addison at three weeks old, struggling to stay alive with every breath, it takes me right back to those dark and frightening days in the ICU at BC Children’s Hospital. I remember feeling like a complete zombie most of the time, asking myself, “Is this really happening???! Is that my tiny baby??” I honestly have no idea how Aaron and I got through those painful seconds, minutes and hours. All I know is Addison kept us going. She was, and still is, the reason we remained hopeful and optimistic, without disintegrating into a complete mess of despair, anger and fear.
Then I look at the latest photo of her, standing so tall and strong, a beautiful warrior inside and out. With a healthy dose of ‘normal’ seven year old drama and hysterics, of course. Seven years has gone by so quickly and slowly at the same time. I never would have imagined we would be so incredibly fortunate to be where we are right now.
Thank you to our donor Audrey and her mom Felicia. Without you, we would not be us. You have given us everything we have today and this heartiversary is really a celebration of you. A testament to the power of organ donation.
Elaine, Aaron, Addison and Charlie