Thanksgiving will always be an emotional time for us. It was this time last year that we were in the midst of Kevin’s medical crisis.
Matt and I came home from the Hospital last Thanksgiving for a short visit. I remember telling myself not to go into the room that we had made into Kevin’s nursery but I could not stop myself. I sat in the chair in his room and just sobbed for the baby boy that I thought I would never be able to bring home.
Later that day we went back to the hospital and spent more time with Kevin, reading books and singing to him. It was so difficult to watch my tiny baby boy fighting so hard and knowing that we were running out of options. The next day we knew we were going to have to make some serious decisions regarding Kevin’s care. I will never forget when Dr. Burkhart, Kevin’s surgeon, came into our room. He had a pink sheet off paper in his hand, which I knew was a consent form.
It was at that moment I knew they had a plan. Even though no one was certain whether or not another heart repair would help Kevin, something inside me knew this was our only hope. I will always be grateful to Dr. Burkhart for everything he did for Kevin.
The next day our very sick little boy went to surgery. Before he went I had a moment alone with him. I felt that I needed to tell him that if he was tired and needed to leave us it was ok, but if he could, I really needed him to keep fighting. I told him how much we all loved him and wanted him to come home. I had hope that everything was going to be ok, but it was hard to let myself think that way.
Kevin’s nurse that day was Bob. For those of you who met Bob, you know how great he is. He came in after we had been waiting for what seemed like an eternity and told us that Kevin was stable and not on ECMO (heart bypass). This was huge for Kevin, and honestly it took me a moment to process what he was saying. I made him repeat it, just so I knew I was hearing him correctly.
A few hours later Kevin was brought back into intensive care, and I was not prepared for what I saw. Kevin did not look real to me - he had tubes everywhere and his chest was still open. It didn’t matter though. I went over to him and kissed his forehead and told him I was so proud of him for being so strong.
This Thanksgiving is so different. I am so thankful that we have Kevin with us and his health is stable. He is a beautiful child inside and out and he brings true happiness and joy to our lives. I hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving.
Matt made a video for Kevin showing pictures of him over the past year. The link is in the menu bar on the left, we hope you enjoy it!