As a parent, there are few things greater than seeing your children succeed. I can honestly say that I am so proud of what my children have accomplished, though still in their teens. They have already achieved life’s biggest reward: the enduring love of family and friends.
Today there were lots more visitors for David. Three different cars traveled from Alabama with family. One car travelled over an hour just to drop off one teen. One car came with a teenage driver (scary if you have ever seen DC traffic). One mom drove a group of kids up, even though she had never met David. One person came directly from an overseas flight to the hospital. Countless texts, calls, and Facebook messages have been sent to both David and Austin. They are loved. There is no greater success.
To put a finer point on things, eleven teens came up to see David today. He was sleeping when some of them arrived, so they sat very patiently for hours before he was awake to see them. Many sat in the waiting room for longer than their visit with David.
My parents and their spouses arrived today, and so did my brother, his wife and daughter. The hospital was so accommodating, because I’m sure we were over their visitor limit.
In the late afternoon, David’s dad arranged a visit from Chef Jose Andres. David had the great pleasure of introducing him to his family, friends, and a lot of the hospital staff. We heard about another boy on the unit who also wanted to be a chef, and David took Chef Andres down to see him.
We said a lot of goodbyes to staff in preparation for going home tomorrow. There were many tear-filled eyes as they said their farewells. In under a week, they became so attached to David. And we are so thankful for their love and kindness. It’s a crazy hard situation and they did their best to guide us through it.
Richard thanked Victor, one of his fantastic nurses, for taking such great care of David and for caring, and he said, with tears in his eyes, “I wish I could do more”. That really says it all.
David was exhausted but happy as he went to sleep. That is what every day should be.