Two years. Maybe two years doesn't seem like such a long time. But two years=730 days=17,531 hours or so. Now it seems like quite a bit, doesn't it?
Why am I obsessing about two years? Well, two years ago today, we loaded Madi up into a LifeLink ambulance that took her to the Mayo Clinic. We were "supposed" to be going down there to wean Madi off of her heart meds, while completing her transplant evaluation. It was our hope that she would be able to be extubated within the week or so. We missed her voice, her smile, her eyes. It had been so long at that point since Madi had been herself.
Little did we know that 18 hours after her status was bumped up to 1A on the transplant list, Madi would get her new heart. At the time we were so turned around with everything going on in our lives. It was literally like someone ripped the rug out from underneath us. I could not even think straight, and I was full of doubts about whether we had made the right decisions regarding her care. I think if your child is battling something that is exceedingly difficult, a parent cannot help but have doubts, guilt and questions on top of the usual fear.
Thankfully, we did make the right decisions. And in the two years' time since that ambulance ride, I have learned a lot. Most importantly I have learned that it's about the little things in life.
This afternoon, my kids and I laid on the living room floor. We read books and sang songs. We played with the shape sorter and Madi "made" Sydney and I some pasta with her dishes. (She also made cat food, she said, but that obviously was not for us.) Then both of my girls flung themselves at me and bounced on me. It was like they had coordinated that moment to wrestle with their mom.
As the nosepieces on my glasses slammed into my eyeballs (Madi tried to sit on my head), I found myself thinking "Two years ago, I would've given anything for this."
Another family looked past their grief and through their tears to give my daughter a second chance. So when I think of those moments two years ago, I think of our donor family too. They gave so much to my family. On every one of those 730 days over the past two years, I think of them.
And hope they know how much I love them.