I had a dream last night. It's been on my mind all day.
I was in a children's hospital. I don't know which one (we've been in four). But, in the dream, somehow I got separated from Tom and Harlie. And I didn't have my cell phone with me. So I couldn't call Tom. And I couldn't remember why we were there or who we were seeing.
Was it her heart? Her lungs? Her back? Her GI system? ENT? Craniofacial? Infectious Diseases?
So many departments! How was I ever going to find them?
I was just walking around the hospital, feeling so overwhelmed. And LOST.
And then I walked into a waiting room (I have no idea which one) and I saw my dear friend Susan, her husband Steve, and their daughter, Ainsley. They live in Washingston (the state) and if we were to ever be in the same area, I hope we would know about it and we would see each other. So, the likelihood of us just running into each other is highly unlikely!
The next thing I know I am waking up from a nap in a hospital chair, thinking, "Why am I sleeping? I need to be finding Harlie and Tom! But, I'm SO sleepy!" The chair. The hospital blankets. So incredibly familiar.
Then I woke up.
At first, I thought it was funny. But, after just a few minutes, I realized it made me sad. It's sad that there are SO many departments that we have to deal with. It's sad that there are so many doctors, so many hospitals, so much history. IN. JUST. EIGHT. YEARS.
I wonder if having this dream has anything to do with the fact that on Friday, I got her date for her heart cath (scheduled for next Friday, Feb. the 6th). It will be in DC. As much as I want to be able to stay here for as much as we can, I just don't think I'm ready. I'm afraid to make a change where a change isn't absolutely necessary. It's kinda brainless going to DC. I know it. I know where she'll go after the cath (the heart and kidney unit). It's "the floor" for cardiac kids. It's where she'll go if she doesn't have problems and doesn't need the ICU. I know the rooms have a TV, with movies and a remote control. And they have a bathroom with a shower in the room. It's comfortable for her AND for me. There's also a playroom right down the hall for your kid to get toys, games and books to play with while they're in the hospital.
These are not things we would get if we stayed here. There is no heart and kidney unit. There is no "floor" for Harlie. If she's not in the ICU, she would be in the Progressive Care Unit, which is one big open room with patient beds separated by curtains - and it's horrible. It really is. I mentioned the remote control earlier because you are lucky if you get one when you're there. And you still have to hear the television in the spot next to you, just inches away, separated by a curtain. I swear one time, the parent next to us was watching Jerry freaking Springer at 11pm. I wanted to kill myself. I've heard other parents burp and fart. All while hearing children cry, cough, throw up - and every beep on every monitor or piece of equipment in the entire unit. It's enough to make a mom go crazy.
Please know I'm not talking about the care you get while there. I love our local hospital and our doctors. But, that particular unit's environment is horrible.
So, I stay when I can, and I go when I have to. And that leaves us without a "home" hospital. Which kind of explains part of my dream. Sometimes, it hits me hard just how many challenges Harlie has to live with. Even while I'm sleeping.
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