A little break on Ellie in this post as I wanted to write about our hospital. The Hospital for Sick Kids is one of the leading paediatric hospitals in North America and I have been very impressed with the care here. Surgery day was managed so efficiently, in our waiting room there was a huge computer screen with each child’s hospital number and a status update, volunteers were constantly checking on kids and notifying parents. When our surgeon was done we were taken to a private room to discuss the surgery and then to a special waiting room for children in the ICU. While waiting for surgery we met a lot of parents who had traveled long distances to be here, parents going through their 15th surgery, parents celebrating their final surgery, parents of kids with minor surgeries, and parents like us who were new to Sick Kids. The ICU was like nothing I’ve ever experienced. Each child had their own nurse, in addition to normal monitors they had two computer screens. The nurses’ level of knowledge and confidence caring for very sick children was inspiring. The ICU was a sad and scary place, parents receiving scary news about their children, emergencies in the beds next door, newborn babies without visitors. Once moved to the cardiac floor our mood greatly improved. Each patient on the floor gets a private room with a twin size bed for the parents, a bathroom with shower, and a tv. The babies get their own bouncy chairs and bottle warmers. Aside from the sad diagnosis’ and conditions here, the hospital is a fairly happy place. Kids get movies, visits from clowns and service dogs. Each floor has 4 playrooms filled with toys, play stations and all sorts of games. Their is a theatre here with daily performances. A teen room with a pool table, instruments, and air hockey. A pizza place, a special food market, a gift store with better toys than toys r us, and glass elevators that feel like rides in themselves. I see a lot of families who have made this place home and feel lucky that our stay is temporary. At times I feel sad seeing children being wheeled through the halls, but at the same time I can feel their strength circulating within the walls, from the newborn babies to the teenagers these children are special and strong. Perspective is easy to find here, I once heard that courage is a learned trait but I know it’s within us from birth and it flows within these kids.
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