“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together.. there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart.. I'll always be with you.”
~A.A. Milne, from "Winnie the Pooh"

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Entertaining Angels Unaware....

I have written more than once about the amazing nurses in the Special Care Nursery @ IU that took care of my sweet angel after she was born. Women that I am not sure I could have made it through those first stumbling steps into a brand new world without. I have always known, and fully appreciated, the impact these ladies have had on my life and how grateful I was to call them friends. It never really crossed my mind that maybe all of us, not just Liddy, had an impact on theirs........

A couple of weeks ago, I was surprised to find a message on my voicemail from the social worker at IU's SCN. She introduced herself briefly and requested that I call her back at my earliest convenience about being sponsored by the SCN staff for Christmas. My first instinct was instantly to refuse. Our Christmas presents for the kids were already bought and paid for (early this year!) wrapped up under the tree. While it wasn't going to be an extravagant Christmas by any means, it was all set to be a good one, and I felt as if there MUST be someone who needed it more than we did......
Christmases are never extravagant here. Last year's expenditures were especially tight, knowing that we were facing the possibility of several weeks in the hospital with the coming new year. I was already excited for Christmas this year, and I made the phone call to Tracy (the social worker) set to thank her profusely for thinking of us and politely refuse.
Practically the first words that left my mouth when we finally spoke were "Isn't there someone else who needs it more than we do?" and I listened with surprise when she replied that this year they had more donors than recipients and that the SCN staff chose us. I think she might have even told me that she expected me to refuse and that was why they wanted to do it for us. *sigh* O.k. All of my carefully thought out arguments flew straight out the window. We went through the details of our family, ages, sizes, likes and agreed that we would talk the following week about Liddy and I coming down to pick up our goodies.
Friday morning, we packed up and headed to Indy. I was looking forward to seeing a few beloved faces and visiting a new friend whose child is inpatient at Riley next door while we were there. I was expecting a couple of presents for each of us, and took the Saturn instead of the van to save money on gas (plus the darn doors were frozen shut!).
Ummmm. When they opened the door to the office where our presents were stashed, my jaw just about hit the floor. Not what I was expecting at all! Two people had to bring two wagons full to my car and when it was all packed up, there was literally not a single inch of available space that wasn't piled with presents (kinda left me wishing I had taken the van anyway!).

The backseat

The front passenger seat
 When I got home, we unloaded everything and John was every bit as shocked as I was. I was conflicted. It is amazing to look at all those presents under our tree and KNOW how excited our boys are going to be Christmas morning, yet I still felt as if it were just too much. They were already going to have a good Christmas. Now it is going to be an AWESOME one.....quite possibly the best one either of them have had their entire lives.

 Later in the afternoon, I heard from one of the dear friends I made there in the SCN. She said that she heard I got a wonderful surprise and when I expressed my gratitude to her, she replied that we deserved it. As I told her that they had just given my kids the very best Christmas of their lives, she replied that that was their point. Wow. *tears*
How can it be that these women knew without it ever being spoken that we could never in our wildest dreams give our kids, or ourselves, a Christmas like this one? How is it that our little family has made such an impression on them that a year later, our names are still the first they think of to bless? And how in the world do I ever thank them enough for the smiles we get to see when the wrapping paper starts flying next week?

Christmas isn't all about the presents. It isn't really about them at all. And even if the kids only see what they get right now, I know in my heart how much love went into each present under our tree. And I will never forget it............
You ladies are, each and every one, dear to me. I can not thank you enough for every single thing you have done for us throughout the last year. Little did I know when I met you last January that I was entertaining angels, completely unawares.


  1. awesome. how fun it is going to be!

  2. I KNOW! John and I have presents under the tree and to be honest, I don't even remember the last time I had more than 1 under there! lol
    It is driving me batty though because this is the first Christmas in I don't know how long that I haven't known exactly what was in every package under the tree. I am as impatient to see what the kids got as I am to see what I did!!! :)

  3. Aw, this brought tears to my eyes, that's so wonderful. Merry Christmas Heidi, to you and your family :)

  4. Thanks Jenny! Merry Christmas to you and yours as well!

  5. Yay! You are continuing to be love bombed from all angles! What a great thing. Enjoy, and Merry Christmas!

  6. How wonderful! You and your sweet Liddy left happy little footprints on all of our hearts during your stay in SCN.

    You are a fantastic mommy, who busts her butt to provide for her kids (John too of course) You're in school, you're raising boys (uhm hello that deserves a lot of acknowledgement) you are the momma to a sweet little girl who needs a little extra and the best part about all that you do is that you document it all so that we can still know you and be with you!

    Merry Christmas Ehle's!

  7. Oh Emily! Today is the day for telling you how much I love you!!! :) You make my heart happy!
    Merry Christmas to the Ludwigs too!


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